Large sectors of the South African economy are familiar with blast hole drilling and its associated equipment. As water becomes more expensive in South Africa, more and more people are investigating their underground water options. Both domestic and agricultural parties seek out groundwater for the cost-effective and clean resource it provides.
There is more to drilling than only drilling for water, however, and a number of regular drilling applications form the more comprehensive workload of those running drilling rigs. Monitoring drilling, for example, is normally about water – but not simply about bringing it to the surface for potable water. Monitoring drilling determines where exactly it’s sitting below the ground, how it fluctuates, and whether or not it poses any danger of damaging or curtailing operations.
Reverse circulation (RC) drilling is applied for various reasons, and essentially means that air is blasted down the outer drilling tube, which in turn allows for uptake and expulsion of the debris on the surface as it is forced up through the inner tube. This not only keeps it out of the way as drilling progresses, but also enables constant process evaluation as the debris is deposited on the surface. Core drilling can happen vertically or horizontally, while geotechnical drilling is usually associated with pre-building sampling or drilling to allow for some aspect of the building process.
The Fireworks of Blast Hole Drilling
Pretty much as dangerous as it sounds (at least when the hole is packed with explosives), mines and large construction projects often have to blast their way through rock in order to access material or meet specifications and carry on in the desired direction. That said, blast hole drilling is a technique used mostly in mining application, where a company needs to position explosives in a manner that will see them cause fissures and cracks in the subterranean rock, thus enabling further drilling and mining.
There is a lot of precision included in the process. Depth, aperture, and ultimate access are all considerations and, if miscalculated, the ensuing explosion won’t have the desired effect. Since blast hole drilling often involves either a stoppage or at least a schedule to keep, it’s important that you get it right first time around. Since the aim is to induce the weakening of the inner geology of the surrounding rock, blast hole drilling needs to be a precision operation. Rock doesn’t move easily! If it’s not successfully fragmented, operations can’t continue.
The blast hole driller is responsible for meeting the specifications of the drill, typically based on a geologist’s survey and understanding of the subterranean rock. Drilling through rock might seem uncanny for many people, but today’s drilling rigs are more than up to the task.
The Alternatives to Blast Hole Drilling Don’t Really Exist…
One of the principal surface drilling techniques employed by mines all over South Africa (and the world), blast hole drilling is the setup needed for successful exploration by mining houses, looking to access new deposits for extraction. Indeed, a fair percentage of those deposits would either be completely off limits, or force mining houses into alternative methodologies to access the raw material, were blast hole drilling not an established practice. Indeed, there aren’t really any viable alternatives – some rock layers are simply not amenable to mechanical attack, either because of the hard nature of the material or their sheer size, or both.
Blast hole drilling may appear to be a relatively simple process, but its value is unfathomable, as the quest for an alternative would lead many mining houses, for example, to either abandon deposits that lie beneath impenetrable rock, or severely dip profits in trying to get around it.
Inyati Group Has You Covered
Ask any seasoned mine manager, and they’ll tell you they’d prefer a seasoned drilling outfit 10 times out of 10. A great deal of expense is involved in setting up and enacting the packing and detonating of the explosives employed to fracture rock, and the necessary expertise is invaluable to the process.
Call on the Inyati Group to provide swift and accurate services on blast hole drilling. We’re experienced professionals running great rigs. We will get it done in the most cost-effective and successful manner possible.
We are here, at your service – call us.