Marc Kieler
Globexplore Drilling
View from the Top

Drilling Company Offers Industry-Leading Technology

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 15:20

Q: How has the market in Mexico reacted to this addition to your Core Logging Web Service, which uses Hyperspectral Imaging and XRF X ray fluorescence analysis?

A: The overwhelming majority of our clients have embraced the fact that this is the path of the future. However, we launched this during a severe economic down turn with slashed budgets which has slowed the momentum of clients making the shift from old habits to new technologies. It is certain that this service will generate consistencies with more accurate, non- destructive Geochemical and Mineralogical analysis with the cost savings of less delay and misinterpretation of human error.

Q: How does this product solve problems for your clients, and how does it differ from other data analysis software solutions on the market?

A: In 2016, Globexplore teamed up with Terracore and Intellicore to create our Geosite Service, which provideson-site Mineralogy and Geochemistry analysis using Hyperspectral and XRF technologies for real time sharing of accurate consistency of core logging. Our partner Terracore is respected as a worldwide industry leader, and its platform has been relied on by innovative companies including Anglo Gold, Barrick Gold and The Swedish Geological Survey from the first core ever drilled to the last core drilled in their country. The Intellicore software platform is easy to use and focuses on a wide or narrow search engine of spectral images, detected minerals and alterations organized by depth and interpolating additional values like geochemistry.

Clients have chosen Terracore for many reasons, but I will share a few examples. The Intellicore software platform is really easy to use with the ability to focus on a wide or narrow search functionality of viewing spectral images, detected minerals and alterations organized by borehole, box, depth and integrating additional data such as geochemistry. This powerful platform manages all the features required for any core logging and with precision generates a comprehensive set of data products for the ease of sharing with corporate offices and third-party software platforms such as Leap Frog, Vulca, MicroMine and similar programs.

In addition, our system can scan a complete core box in one pass whereas our competitors can only scan a 10cm wide surface of one core sample at a time. This gives our clients approximately 75 percent more data, 10 times faster and at a significantly lower cost. Also, only our system can scan RC chip samples. We are offering this technology on site next to the drill or at the core shack as part of our Geosite services which in effect provides a mobile lab. We believe we are only drilling company offering the service that allows geologists to take quick decisions to maximize their budgets and speed of exploration evaluation. This is a huge advantage when compared to the traditional months or at best weeks of time to receive analytical information from a lab.

Q: Could you provides a success story that demonstrates the impact Core Logging service has on a client’s drilling operations?

A: There are many success stories. For example, an exploration company made a greenfield discovery using traditional prospecting techniques. At the beginning of the exploration process, the company identified certain minerals and alterations and then used this information as its pathfinder. The geologists were first skeptical to try hyperspectral technology. After several months of frustration with traditional exploration analysis, they analyzed a number of core boxes with Terracore as a test and discovered a crucial misinterpretation of mineral and alterations. With this correction, they were able to reset new pathfinders that made the correlation with the mineral values toward a very significant discovery that was not previously evident.

Q: How are technological advancements in drilling helping to make exploration projects more viable?

A: We ensure our drill fleet is up-to-date by replacing each rig every five years, giving us the most modern fleet in Mexico. We purchase our rigs from the highest quality rig builders in Canada who specialize in the latest safety technology rather than attempt to build our own rigs - as some of our competitors do - to save money. For example, our Man Portable Drilling eliminates the environmental impact and permits required for road and drill pad construction. We are working with one of our rig builders to develop a high performance, single engine Man Portable Rig that is significantly more compact than any other rig available on the market. Having a single engine, rather than the typical three or four, decreases the drill pad size and reduces the risk of accident during transportation. This reduces fuel consumption, maintenance costs and mechanical downtime. We can now move faster and safer yet maintain the power to  reach 400m in HQ, 750m in NQ and 1,000m in BQ. Another innovation we are working on with our partners is a Man Portable RC rig that can reach depths of 200m. Both of these rigs do not have a single component that weighs more than 420lbs.

Q: How is automation impacting the drilling segment and to what extent is Globexplore developing unmanned, automated solutions for its clients?

A: The industry is not quite ready for unmanned drilling in the exploration area. Unmanned drilling is working for some large and repetitive types of drilling campaigns like the level plains in Australia. While Artificial Intelligence will eventually help the industry, current exploration needs flexibility to quickly react to a variety of ground conditions, which requires the experience of a well-trained driller at the controls. Globexplore has automated every function possible to remove the chances of human error. Our Globexplore Management System (GMS) is a custom software system we developed ourselves with experts in this field. It was a substantial investment but the increase to our overall efficiency and productivity levels has been incredible. The GMS gives us a highly detailed, real-time experience starting from the drill hole to procedures that automatically generate drill logs, invoices, productivity data and preventive maintenance for all drills and support equipment. The GMS, for example, automatically reorders and maintains our inventory levels in the field and alerts us when a driver exceeds the speed limit or drives outside set boundaries. It generates numerous productivity reports and gathers important information that helps us take our performance to a higher level that cannot be reached without such an automated, real-time monitoring system.