New Trends and Tech in the Global Excavation World

group of GPR professionals looking at different antennas

Our founder and CEO, Forrest Sim, recently had the opportunity to get his hands on some of the latest GPR equipment and other new technologies in the global excavation industry. We’re breaking down his experience and takeaways around emerging ground penetrating radar technology, industry trends, and other important take-aways concerning safe excavation.

Exploring New Technologies in Ground Penetrating Radar

Testing out the latest antennas on the market is one of the ways that our team at Enhanced Scanning stays up to date on new technology. Forrest had the opportunity to try out the latest antennas from all of the manufacturers who were present, and he was impressed. Each company has come out with new software, interfaces, or hardware that he was able to experience firsthand.

Forrest and colleagues took the antenna testing outdoors for some real-world application. By scanning the exact same swath of the sidewalk and examining the data from each one, they were able to compare several antennas head-to-head to assess the similarities and differences between equipment. You rarely get an opportunity to do this as a GPR technician.

Forrest and colleagues compare different GPR antennas

One startup making waves that Forrest connected with was Exodigo, a company offering a combination of hardware and software that benefits the underground locating space by combining multiple sensors onto one platform and then processing all of the collected data together. They then produce a geolocated map of underground assets with a very high level of confidence and a lot of redundancy. It’s pretty cool stuff.

Some general trends we’re watching in the industry include:

  • GPR hardware design is becoming less bulky, more streamlined, and less heavy
  • GPR software is incorporating more and more geolocating and 3D visualization in order to better position and better understand scanned surfaces
  • GPR antenna designers are paying more attention to ergonomics, working to make their equipment less unwieldy and easier to operate for technicians
  • While the general user experience in the field is becoming more comfortable, GPR depth penetration hasn’t really changed (probably because physics hasn’t really changed), though each has their own method of improving the signal-to-noise ratio
  • A lot of progress has been made, however, in post-processing software, with manufacturers improving their own offerings and 3rd party companies creating offerings that will accept data sets from numerous manufacturers

These are some of the companies with whom we spoke at the Global Excavation Safety Conference:

  • Geolantis Software (Pelicancorp) – A software provider, their GeoLantis software is intriguing for its reporting capabilities.
  • DGT Associates – A Boston-based surveying and engineering company, their Director of Subsurface Utility Mapping, Mike Twohig, brought his new Kontur-built towed array GPR to show it off in real life. 
  • GSSI – A well-known GPR equipment manufacturer based in the US.
  • Hexagon – A global leader of digital reality solutions, including GPR.
  • Mala – A Sweden-based manufacturer of equipment and software with offices in the US.
  • Kontur – A manufacturer of towed-array GPR systems based in Hawaii
  • Proceq – A GPR manufacturer and creator of the world’s first wireless, handheld continuous-wave GPR solution.
  • Impulse Radar – A GPR solutions manufacturer and maker of products like the PinPointR.

Current GPR Trends and Tech: Key Takeaways

We never miss an opportunity to develop professionally and expand our knowledge in the industry. After testing out new software and technologies from companies that weren’t previously on our radar, Forrest and our team now have a better idea of which hardware and software will advance our operations and provide the best results for our customers when it comes time to purchase new equipment. 

At Enhanced Scanning, we’re proud to do what few other companies of our size do: invest in staying up to date on the industry’s best practices, new trends, and technologies. Even as a smaller business, we’re committed to staying competitive and relevant in the industry to continue providing best-in-class service to our customers.

Contact us today to get started on your next project. 

For more insight and details about all things GPR, follow Forrest’s LinkedIn page.

Give us a call: 951-783-2483