TerraCarta locates cables and pipes with drone!


TerraCarta also searches for directional bores and underwater pipes and can do this with a very high degree of certainty.


But things continue to develop…

On fast-flowing rivers, working with a workboat is a lot more difficult than, for example, on this canal. On larger waterways there is also marine traffic safety to keep into account.

Within the (UGI) innovation program with Shell we had already made progress in recording readings from well-known types of locators based on radio detection (EML). This innovation with Shell could provide (part of) a solution to the problem. In discussions about this problem with Rijkswaterstaat (Department of Waterways and Public Works), Shell and KPN (Royal Dutch Telecom), we have started looking at other possible solutions. This is where KPN has given us the opportunity to map one of their directed drillings, using a drone.


Initially this borehole was, of course, mapped using the existing “trace and confirm” method. This method provides the highest possible security.

A drone was then equipped with a converted locator that continuously logs the detection values. The cable’s location was fixed by flying over it in a zig-zag fashion.

The results of the drone measurements corresponded exactly to the position of the traced cable, so we can consider this first test a huge success!

We found a deviation of 1.81 metres; KPN corrected this immediately. Another cable corrected in the KLIC, but this time in a unique way!