The display screen for Atlas Copco’s Edge drill monitor.
Atlas Copco’s Edge drill monitor, originally developed for the oil and gas drilling market, was introduced to the mining community. Edge provides a simple graphical display to show the driller what is happening with the hammer and, therefore, the bit at the bottom of the hole. This real-time feedback allows the driller to optimize the penetration rate, maintain consistency and reduce the chance of over-extending the tools, thereby avoiding breakage and costly delays.
Edge is a system for continuous monitoring that can be fitted to all types of drill rigs that use Secoroc DTH (down-the-hole) hammers. It consists of a sensor, a data capturing and processing unit and a rugged personal computer with a 7-in. display screen. The sensor is mounted on the drill head or rotation unit, which is connected by a cable to the data capturing unit mounted on the rig.
When the piston in the DTH hammer strikes the bit, it creates vibration, which is captured, processed and interpreted, and that data is transmitted to the PC. The PC displays this data on screen in both a graphic representation and in actual numbers. Any problems or unexpected changes that occur are displayed in the graphical view in real-time with alerts when something out of the ordinary occurs. These spikes can represent different in-hole scenarios such as the sudden presence of a new type of rock or geological zone, the presence of water or flushing problems. This feedback enables the driller to continuously optimize the drilling process as if he has eyes in the hole.
Testing by experienced drillers has revealed that Edge equalizes production at a higher level from one driller to the next and decreases the training period for new drillers. EDGE also gives companies the ability to move drillers to locations unfamiliar to them, bringing them up to speed on the local geologic formations and their specific drilling characteristics instantly.
T.J. Plunkett, Atlas Copco’s engineering manager of Secoroc DTH Products, said “Around the world, experienced drillers use Secoroc tools because of the advanced technology and productivity. Yet, because of lack of training or experience, some customers are unable to benefit from the full value engineered into our products. The Secoroc Edge drill monitor provides the driller the ability to squeeze every dollar out of our tools.”
For more information, call 800/732-6762 or visit www.atlascopco.us.