Drilling a test hole for a future geothermal project, a Sonic Drill Corporation rig managed to bore past 300 ft. and fill out the hole in 2 hours and three minutes. No other drill exists that could do the job any quicker.
The drilling project, part of a law library expansion for the University of B.C., was contracted to Hemmera Energy, a division of Hemmera Environmental Services Consultants in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. In this first step, the company was asked to conduct a feasibility study to find out whether it was practical to install a geothermal field from the proposed extension.
“Our role is to perform the test holes to determine if a larger scale project is achievable,” said Christiaan Iacoe, an environmental scientist and adviser at Hemmera Energy. “If you are going to drill 200 holes or longer, it is a good idea to understand the conditions.”
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Located on the campus close to the high sand bluffs overlooking Burrard Inlet, the strategy was to drill a single 350-foot hole. The first hole was drilled with a traditional mud rotary rig, however, once the drill rig got past the 320-foot mark, it had been stopped in its tracks. That is when the sonic drill was brought into a”rescue rig”