Locating things like wiring and piping systems buried underground is the main purpose of precision utility mapping. An important part of any civil engineering project, utility mapping helps prevent delays associated with unexpected utility installations; thereby, saving time and money as a result. It is always easier for a project planner to make accurate estimates of the cost of an undertaking when they have a valid utility map in their possession.
However, it is worth mentioning the fact that when it comes to getting an accurate utility map, there are many obstacles you need to overcome. With the many hidden objects that tend to be buried underground nowadays, surveyors have often faced all sorts of problems in this field.
Overcoming Challenges In Utility Mapping With The Help Of Technology
Mostly due to the Subsurface Utility Engineering sector, advancements have been made in the process of identifying and mapping utility installations in recent years.
To collect the highest amount of insights relating to underground infrastructure as possible, it is now possible to use geophysical technologies together with analysis of historical data and other similarly less technical approaches.
Commonly Used Utility Mapping Technologies
While Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) has enjoyed widespread use, EMI (Electromagnetic Induction) has become a useful alternative. To amplify a primary magnetic field, Electromagnetic Induction makes use of electrical currents sent through a transmitter.
To locate underground utility installations, a receiver is tuned to the correct frequency in order to pick up any deflections in the magnetic field. Although this method can be rendered ineffective due to interference caused by metal objects, EMI is a great alternative in situations where excessive moisture hinders the use of GPR.
For those who specialize in utility mapping projects, like Precision Utility Mapping, GPR (also known as Ground Penetrating Radar) is the gold standard. Electromagnetic waves in both MHz and GHz ranges are sent out using GPR equipment, with the location of utility works being captured using the subsequent return signal.
Advantages Of Ground Penetrating Radar In Creating Accurate Utility Maps
In addition to making it possible to spot both metallic and non-metallic installations underground, it is clear that GPR also offers a high level of accuracy. High speed of data collection, high-quality images, and relatively low costs are some of the main reasons why a large number of surveyors choose to use Ground Penetrating Radar for utility mapping projects.
However, GPR can produce highly accurate mapping results when used in combination with other methods, such as radio detection, because it can be negatively affected by a variety of factors including soil moisture.
- About the Author
Alex Grigoryan is a Professional Home Improvement and Lifestyle Writer. He has been in the industry for over 6 years and has been writing for Chique Home Living since 2019. His work has been featured in prestigious blogs such as Spruce Home, Better Homes & Garden, and more.