Australian Researchers Record a World First With Successful Carbon Fibre HQ Drill Rod Trial

april 16 2012

In a world first, a carbon fibre drill rod has successfully drilled in mineral exploration at the Deep Exploration Technologies Cooperative Research Centre’s (DET CRC) Drilling Research and Training Facility at Brukunga.

The carbon fibre drill rod, produced by Queensland-based Teakle Composites, will revolutionize the drilling industry according to CEO of the DET CRC Professor Richard Hillis. “It will provide a stronger, lighter, safer and smarter drilling rod than the traditional steel product,” he said. “Teakle’s prototype drill rod is more than 50% lighter than a steel rod and there is the potential to embed a sensor within the wall of the rod. “This will enable drillers to collect information about the type and value of material they are drilling through, the precise direction they are drilling and also about potential drilling hazards.

“Until now this has not been possible as it is very difficult to embed sensors in steel rods. Also, many types of sensors are incompatible with steel and metals, sensors such as borehole radar and neutron tools which are used to detect the composition of rocks.

“Composite materials do not have these limitations, so drillers will have the ability to make important decisions about where and what they are drilling in real time. “This will ultimately make the practice faster and more efficient,” Richard said.

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