GPR VS. Electromagnetic
When scanning a site for utilities, utilizing GPR for the entire site would be beneficial to any project & profit any customer by providing a significant amount of data, due to the radar’s capability to discover non-metallic utilities without any plans or previous information that were any existing in the area.
In comparison, while covering the same area to scan, it would be quicker and lower priced with EM scans, it would yield an insufficient amount of data, particularly if any non-metallic utilities existed, in turn causing dangerous excavation conditions, not to mention respecting the project timing without causing headaches.
Therefore, when scanning to detect utilities, the greatest tool we can provide is our certified technicians and their training. We believe each employee shares the obligation and responsibility to prevent incidents or accidents. Monthly safety training, analyzing risks on a job site are just a few of the tools we use to help our technicians prevent incidents from ever occurring. In the end, how the technician is trained to utilize either technology far outweighs the importance of the technology itself.
GPR is most effective when used as a complement to EM scanning technology and should not be used as the primary tool where visual surface features and utility access points exist. EM technology is almost always “best” in those circumstances.
While being at the forefront of technology will always be a demanding factor to our business, it’s the processes that we create and continually clarify over time that makes us unique in this industry and allow us to maximize our utility discoveries while keeping costs down for our customers.
What are your experiences on the subject? Comment below, we value your opinion.