Typical Applications of Sonic Drilling

Typical Applications of Sonic Drilling

One of the primary advantages of the sonic drilling method is that it can be used and is suitable to a wide range of applications. A sonic drill is a unique technology that is more efficient and quite versatile compared to conventional drilling techniques. Here are the following applications of sonic drilling:

Geotechnical Investigation

Sonic drilling is ideal for geotechnical investigation, where conventional methods have difficulty dealing. Sonic drilling bridges the gap where other drilling techniques fail. Some of the problems of conventional drilling methods are alignment, tolerances, poor or no recovery, inefficiency, and inability to penetrate, but sonic drilling surpasses all of these. Typical projects include foundations, dams, landslides, tunnels, and bridges. Sampling with sonic drilling is paramount in any geotechnical investigation as well as environmental investigation. The core sample quality and integrity is just superb. Borehole deviation is only less than 2% or even closer to 1% at times.

Earthen Embankments

Earthen embankments have unique challenges, but sonic drilling can mitigate them successfully. One example was with a project, where it is not allowed to use fluid or air-based drilling methods. However, sonic technology offers a viable drilling technique, which is able to accomplish the project despite the limitations.

Environmental Remediation

Environmental remediation projects are also successfully handled by sonic drilling. The advantages of sonic drilling in this type of project include achieving both high-mobility for grout curtains and low mobility or compaction grouting.

Instrumentation and Monitoring

Sonic drilling is great in getting accurate subsurface information with least environmental impact. Sonic is also best used in the case of instrumentation, where the instruments are placed in a plumb borehole that is fully cased.

Obtaining Groundwater Profile

Based on successful projects, it is safe to say that sonic is the number one drilling method for groundwater profiling. Obtaining a groundwater profile involves lowering a subsurface water pump into the borehole.  The water pump helps the technician pump water up to the surface in a way that the integrity of the boring is not compromised.

Heat Mitigation for VOC Sampling

Some drill sites are difficult deal with, and heat will possibly become a problem. As the drill bit is driven into the subsurface, friction causes it to heat up. This heat must be mitigated and reduced for the integrity of the sample to be maintained. Sonic technology helps lessen the heat by using infrared thermometer, which determined the outside temperature of the sample as well as the inner center of the sample. Other ways that sonic mitigate heat is by shortening coring time in half, changing the drill bit and the barrel in between core runs.

Other Applications

Other applications for sonic drilling are wireline high speed coring, DTH hammer drilling, bedrock packer testing, pressure meter testing, and so on. Other market served by sonic drilling include mining, well installation, and other environmental applications.

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