As opposed to what crosses many people's mind when they hear about drilling, this exercise is not just sinking of holes into the ground, but rather a well thought out process consisting of several mechanisms. Each of the drilling types has its own merits and demerits with reference to the depth of drilling, the costs involved, the rate of penetration, and the geological core sample obtained. Two main types of drills are used in exploration drilling: those that produce core samples and those that produce rock chips. Below are the common types of drilling:
Air Core Drilling If your drilling project involves soft rock and soil formations, you may not need heavy machinery to drill through to your desired depths. The unique feature with air core drilling is that it uses three blades attached to a hollow tube which cut the earth. The work of the hollow tube is to take up the loosened materials and separate them from the samples. This ensures the samples are not damaged and therefore available for analysis. Mining companies looking for minerals prefer air core drilling if the depths involved do not exceed 300 metres.
Percussion Drilling This exploratory drilling technique uses pneumatic pressure to drive steel bits right into ground so as to create holes. It can penetrate hard rock hence appropriate for mineral and ore deposits explorations. All the debris from the drilling process comes out to the earth surface to enable you to do the sampling. The main advantage with this drilling method is its speed and versatility in penetrating different rock types.
Diamond Core Drilling Whenever a cylindrical column of material needs to be removed from the ground for sampling, diamond core drilling is the best for the job. The drilling bit is packed with industrial strength diamonds which aid in cutting through the material. This method derives its advantage from the incredible strength of diamond which can cut through any strength of rock. In addition, the diamond core drilling process is not as noisy and as dusty as the other processes.
Blast Hole Drilling This method is accomplished using explosives. The target rock is first blasted and then crushed so that it can be separated from the other materials for analysis. The most important consideration in this drilling method is the diameter of the blast hole. Most large-scale operations work with holes of approximately 400 mm in diameter while for small scale operations, the hole diameter can be as small as 30 mm. Other drilling methods include underground drilling, sonic drilling, hydraulic rotary drilling, and direct push method.
For more information, contact companies like Rock On Ground.
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