Finding True North

In the oil and gas industry, precision is vital. In early 2019 we received an extremely interesting enquiry from one of the industry’s leading names – an international company specialising in the design and manufacture of drilling equipment and software.

Case Study in Detail

We recognised that there were three possible methods to accomplish the task:

  • Astronomical observation – but this could only be undertaken at night and would be weather dependent.
  • GPS – but the physical constraints of the site rendered this approach unreliable;.
  • Use of a gyroscopic theodolite.

The client’s team in Japan had already undertaken a similar exercise using a gyroscopic theodolite, and hence this was the preferred approach for the UK work, to ensure consistency.

To help us deliver the optimum result for the client, we called on the specialist services of Dr Andrew Wetherelt of Camborne School of Mines, part of Exeter University, to work alongside our team.  A highly-respected expert in the world of tunnelling, Dr Wetherelt has recently worked on the Crossrail project in London; and previously on the channel tunnel.

In order to achieve an extremely high level of accuracy, Dr Wetherelt and our surveyor, Jake Smith, conducted manual calculations multiple times using the Gyromat 2000. This unusual challenge was our first project for the oil and gas industry, and we’re delighted to say that the client was successfully provided with the information they sought, with the work being completed in one day.

The key to success was our thorough understanding of survey methodology, as well as our strong industry partnerships.  We’re proud to offer bespoke surveys and deliverables to all our clients – but we especially relish interesting challenges such as this!

Subscribe to our newsletter