Laying utility lines is a critical aspect of urban development and as technology has continued to advance it is now easier than it has ever been before, thanks to horizontal directional drilling. This is a fascinating process which involves some high level technology, and it is used across the world for the laying of gas and water lines. Very often these lines have to be laid across enormous distances and that has presented so many challenges throughout the years. Thanks to horizontal directional drilling however, this is an easier process than it has ever been before. 

Let’s take a deeper look into the technology behind this process, and exactly what the benefits are. 

Understanding The Process 

The challenges of this kind of drilling is that the earth and the soil and stones beneath it is not consistent in its makeup. This means that precise drilling was often hard, and for that reason shorter lines would be put in. Using horizontal directional drilling however means that we can be more precise over long distances and do so regardless of the structure of the earth. 

First a course is mapped out using imaging software, as to where the drill will take the line. Once this has been mapped, a professional driller is able to control a large drill bit below the earth. To bore the hole the drill bit uses high pressure liquid to break up the earth and follow the line which has been mapped out. Once the earth has been broken up, the drill bit rotates to ensure sufficient space for the water or gas line, all controlled by the driller at the computer. 

Soft Earth 

If the area which is being drilled is soft, then the driller will control the line and the drill bit using bursts of high pressure liquid, which will break up soil and stone. Once this is complete, they will rotate the drill bit from the computer, and then push the drill line through the area of least resistance, as close to the line as possible. 

Harder Earth 

If the drill bit runs into harder earth, things will be performed slightly differently. Usually the driller will use the high pressure liquid whilst rotating the drill bit. As the drill motor rotates the bit, the direction of the drill will also move up and down, in order to break up the earth. Once this is complete, the drill line will move forward and continue boring. 

Benefits of HDD Boring

The reason why this technology is so widely used is that it offers a range of benefits which more conventional methods simply cannot. Thanks to the reduction of labor needs and a faster time frame, companies can save a lot of money when laying utility lines. Furthermore this is a much more environmentally friendly option, as it uses far less energy than a boring mill would. Finally this approach means far less disruption to the landscape and a significant reduction in soil contamination. 

This is high level tech which has created the ideal solution for the laying of pipes and utility lines. 

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Lauren Sanchez - Author

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