DCI Introduces 3D HDD Locating System

By Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor | January 2009 Vol. 64 No. 1

Digital Control Inc. (DCI) has introduced a new directional drilling tracking system the company describes as more intuitive and easier to use than any other tracking product available in the horizontal directional drilling market.

The Digitrak F2 is the first three dimensional field view HDD locating system with a single button user interface and graphically driven menu, said Christian Weise, DCI director of sales and marketing.

The system consists of a handheld receiver, a transmitter, a remote display, a battery charger and rechargeable lithium ion batteries to power the receiver and remote display. The system can be used with any brand of HDD unit.

It will be introduced at the 2009 UCT (Underground Construction Technology International Conference & Exhibition), Jan. 20 22 in San Antonio, TX. The product will be available for purchase following the show, said Weise.

"The F2 is an exciting product with a new look and feel," said Weise. "It has faster processing capabilities, greater accuracy and can locate to depths of 85 feet. The F2's active display enables DCI's exclusive target in the box, look ahead locating capability for Intuitive transmitter tracking. The field of view with the F2's new design and graphic menu interface offers both performance and stylish simplicity."

Advanced features

Weise said in addition to the basic locating capabilities of directional tracking and depth, the DigiTrak F2 includes the advanced features of "Off Trak" locating and target steering to easily and accurately navigate the drill even when obstacles prevent tracking over the drill head.

The enhanced target steering function on the F2 menu allows the operator to place the F2 receiver in front of the drill head along the bore path and to use a target on the remote display to steer. The operator can see in real time the distance and depth of the transmitter relative to the receiver. The high degree of accuracy for DCI's DigiTrak systems is due to the company's unique 3 D antenna configuration, Weise said.

The F2, with its 4 channel radio, enables multiple F2 locators to be in the same vicinity and work up to distances of 2,000 feet. This excellent telemetry range makes the new F2 suitable for maxi rigs currently in use.

The new DigiTrak locating system will be sold through dealers around the world and serviced by domestic customer support centers located throughout the United States and Canada and internationally at DCI regional offices in Germany, India, China, Australia and Russia.