Finding anything underground can be a daunting task. However, with the correct tools and some practice, you’ll discover that it can be simple.

Sonde transmitters is a type of underground service locator and are used to find underground gas pipes, plastic water pipes, and any other underground items that aren’t magnetic. Sondes are transmitters that come with a cable and locators.

Are you curious about what a sonde transmitter is and what it can do? Learn what it is and how it works here.

What Is a Sonde Transmitter?

The wide variety of functions and applications of a sonde system requires just three basic building blocks:

  1. A signal generator or transmitter is used to send a signal to an underground line
  2. A small self-contained transmitter suitable for insertions
  3. A handheld receiver to locate the signals from the transmitters or to locate signals occurring ‘naturally’ on buried lines

A sonde transmitter is a device that is often installed inside of a drill head to broadcast sound waves. However, you can also install them into items such as:

  • A plumber’s snake
  • A fish tape
  • A duct rubber
  • Any other similar insertion types of equipment

This device communicates with your locating device through the use of a magnetic field. You can then use this information to locate the precise location of where you’re drilling or entering. It is also possible to employ radio signals from a sonde transmitter to assist you to pinpoint things such as:

  • Ground temperatures
  • Depth of items
  • Sound frequency

For utility work, sonde transmitters are highly useful because it is extremely expensive and time-consuming to dig regions that include pipes or other similar infrastructure. Therefore, without a sonde transmitter, if you make an error in your calculations, you may find yourself adding days or weeks to your project.

Different Uses of a Sonde Transmitter

You can use a sonde transmitter in a variety of applications. Also, across a wide range of industries.

Utility Industry

As a starting point, sonde transmitters are quite useful for locating sewage and water lines, in addition to other types of subsurface utilities.

In particular, they can aid in the identification of any flaws or obstructions discovered inside the pipe system.

Sonde transmitters are also suited for periodic checks of material-transporting pipes in the industrial and gas industries.

Plumbing Industry

While we’re on the subject of pipelines, it’s also beneficial to the plumbing industry. In some situations, it’s used to pinpoint the source of a septic tank clog.

It’s also used to simply mark changeover or access points within a pipe system.

Telecommunications Industry

Non-metallic pipes, on the other hand, are not the only material on which you can use the sonde transmitter. For example, in the telecommunications industry, you use the sonder device to aid in the mapping of the route of a vacant fiber duct.

Electrical Industry

The sonde transmitter can be used in the electricity sector. It’s used to trace the path of damaged conduits that need replacement.

Drilling Industry

Directional drilling is a technique employed by large companies to gain access to subterranean resources such as:

  • Oil reserves
  • Natural gas reserves
  • Other natural resources

Most wells are located above the intended reservoir, therefore in order to access them, you must first drill down to the well below the desired reservoir. To reach these reservoirs a pilot hole needs to be drilled.

During the pilot hole process in horizontal directional drilling, sondes such as the digitrak f5 are used to determine the exact placement of the drill head.

Location, depth, and other transmitter data are provided to a remote terminal on a drilling rig once the sonde housing is underground. In this manner, the operator can maintain the drill head’s position along the pioneer drill path and withdraw at the predetermined location.

Sonde transmitters can be used for various applications in many different industries, as you can see in the examples above.

Maintenance of Your Sonde Transmitter

When the battery in a Sonde transmitter becomes entirely oxidized, it is the most typical cause of failure. When this happens there is no connectivity from the battery to the body of the sonde device. Let’s look at the signs and maintenance needed to keep your device in shipshape condition:

  • Conduct routine maintenance on your sonde equipment as this is one of the most effective techniques to avoid failure
  • Keep a close check on your equipment for symptoms of oxidation and deterioration
  • When you spot any damage or oxidation, make sure to clean and oil the device as soon as you possibly can

Taken together, the measures outlined above will ensure that your equipment has the longest possible life span.

Advantages of Using a Sonde Transmitter

With the help of a sonde location device, you get a lot of benefits and services for obtaining info from underground that isn’t available with any other method or combination of methods. A sonde transmitter can:

  • Locate underground lines by searching a region from the surface
  • It is capable of tracing and identifying a specified line
  • It is capable of tracing and identifying sewers, as well as any non-metallic ducts and pipes to which it has access
  • Identify obstructions and collapses
  • As mentioned before, it is capable of determining depth from the surfaces.
  • Track the progress of ‘No Dig’ equipment and machines.
  • The technology can be used to transmit data to guide equipment above and below ground, as well as on the seafloor
  • Can detect some types of cable faults, monitor the state of pipeline coatings, and detect water leakage in plastic pipes
  • Can determine the location of joints in iron gas pipelines

Other advantages are:

  • The device is easily transportable
  • Workers are able to successfully operate the equipment because it is simple to use and manage
  • You can use it in all soil conditions, including underwater
  • Last but not least, parts are reasonably priced

As you can see there are many advantages and benefits to using a complete system with transmitter.

What’s Buried Beneath!

We hope this post informed you more about a sonde transmitter. As you can see, this device is essential and useful across many industries.

Not only does this equipment assist in reducing the costs associated with digs, but it also assists in reducing time spent!

Did you find this article interesting? If you answered yes, you’ve come to the correct place. Continue your research to discover additional topics that you’re guaranteed to enjoy!

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