Exploring our capabilities and expertise in understanding borehole geophysics techniques

Borehole geophysics takes advantage of using a range of geophysical survey techniques at depth down a borehole. The techniques operate in broadly the same manner as they would when undertaken at the surface, with the advantage of providing higher resolution data at depth than would be possible from surface level. Borehole seismic surveys are used to obtain in situ properties of soil and rock strata and are often used as part of a comprehensive geotechnical investigation.


Borehole geophysics techniques

Downhole seismic testing

An external seismic energy source, such as a hammer striking a plate, is applied adjacent to the borehole on the ground surface. Clamping geophones in the borehole measure the one-way travel time of the initial arrival of the generated seismic energy and the distribution of compression and the shear wave velocity as a function of depth in the vicinity of the borehole. Our tests conform to ASTM standards.

Crosshole seismics

The crosshole test measures the one-way travel times of seismic waves emanating from an external source placed in a source borehole to geophones placed in a receiver hole or holes. The results provide velocity information and dynamic properties with depth, which are useful for civil and environmental engineering purposes (velocity anomalies may represent voids or faults between the boreholes). This technique requires two or more boreholes.

Parallel seismic testing

Many UK cities have been built-over numerous times. The ground is often full of old foundations. Therefore, the reuse of old piles is becoming increasingly necessary. As part of the investigation of old piles (or sheet piles) to test load bearing capacity, parallel borehole geophysics can be used successfully to characterise the geometry of the piled foundation. A borehole is also required. RSK Geosciences can provide the drilling services for this.

Other geophysical surveys techniques

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The RSK group is a leading integrated environmental, engineering and technical services business offering bespoke end-to-end solutions to a variety of sectors. Headquartered in the UK but with an established presence throughout Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Australia, RSK helps organisations around the world achieve their business aspirations in a sustainable and efficient manner.