Line Locating

Published: July 16, 2017 | Last updated: July 5, 2023

What Does Line Locating Mean?

Line locating, in the context of directional boring, is a process by which the bore, or drilling head is located and guided. The line locating system is a Magnetic Guidance System (MGS) that reads Inclination and Azimuth. The MGS, also has a secondary means of location verification utilizing wire grids laid on the ground surface. It is the only system that has the capability of verifying the location. This information is transmitted through the wire-line fitted within the drill string. At the surface, the Navigator in the drill cab performs the necessary calculations to confirm the parameters have been met.


Trenchlesspedia Explains Line Locating

Line locating has become easier with the advent of line detecting technology. Ground penetrating radar uses an electromagnetic antenna that uses radio waves which can penetrate through concrete, soil or rock, and provides a 3 dimensional survey of the area under consideration. GPS systems can pinpoint exact locations and allow the proper alignment of utilities. The magnetic guidance system, even without the use of the wire grid, has been accurate to over 2 km with an accuracy of 2% at depth. Metal detectors can identify copper, iron and steel pipelines as well as aluminum and copper electrical wiring, television and telephone cables and structural steel cables used in foundations. A passive sound detection method is used to detect leakage along pipes and on hydrants by using a highly sensitive ground microphone.

Using these methods to locate lines should be an important part of any rehabilitation project to minimize cost and damage to other utility lines running underground.


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