Drilling Services

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DDH1 Drilling is Australia’s premier provider of diamond coring mineral drilling services. We drill the deepest, most complex holes in Australia and provide the highest quality samples in the shortest possible time, strong emphasis on safety and in a cost-effective and environmentally conscious manner. We are the global leaders in mineral deep hole directional drilling.

Our fleet of modern, state-of-the-art drilling rigs (click here to see our equipment) includes dual-purpose rigs that are able to perform Reverse Circulation drilling as a precursor for our clients who wish to drill deeper. We are also supported by our partner companies, Ranger Drilling, Strike Drilling and Swick Mining Services which support the DDH1 deep-hole capabilities with specialist shallow drilling and underground services across the commodity chain.

DDH1 Drilling also offers specialist engineering services to deliver innovative solutions to the most technical drilling challenges in some of the most complex operating environments in Australia. We offer a complete suite of specialised drilling services to meet the needs of our clients, to optimise the outcomes of their drilling programs, and to support them in complex drilling projects that occur throughout the resources lifecycle.

Diamond Coring

We are Australia’s largest and most specialised provider of surface diamond core drilling capabilities to extract mineral core samples to depths of 3000 metres.

Diamond Core drilling is the primary drilling method for increasingly complex deeper mining and exploration or where structural information advantages from intact core samples are required.

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Reverse Circulation

Our fleet consists of truck mounted multi-purpose modern equipment which is capable of completing deep Reverse Circulation drilling.

Reverse Circulation drilling offers a more cost effective drilling method for preliminary geological data prior to investing in detailed diamond coring exploration programs.

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Specialised Engineering

Our unique expertise in highly complex deep-hole drilling allows us to perform specialised work that is extremely difficult to replicate.

As the clear leader in Diamond Core directional drilling, our expertise in specialised Engineering drilling is required for complex new projects where bespoke solutions are required.

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The Value of Experience

Established in 2006, DDH1 Drilling provides technically innovative drilling solutions to the Australian mineral exploration and mining industry. We have built a premier reputation for drilling expertise, and commitment to risk management and safety.

Deep and complex diamond core capability

DDH1 Drilling provides highly specialised mine development and expansion expertise to extract mineral core samples at depths of up to 3km. This type of work requires specialised knowledge and the right service provider due to the highly technical nature of the services performed, the experienced personnel, safety systems required and the specification of the equipment needed. DDH1 are uniquely positioned in the Australian mineral drilling industry to perform specialised services at such depths due to the quality of equipment and experience.

In 2018, DDH1 drilled Australia’s deepest mineral cored hole at Jundee of 3,217m, a testament to the strength and technical expertise of the DDH1 team.

Multi-directional expertise

In addition to very deep, accurate directional drilling, DDH1 Drilling’s unique competitive advantage in the market is its technical ability and its fleet capability to undertake multiple intersection directional drilling work. This typically involves the drilling of “parent” holes with up to 30 multiple intersections (“daughter holes”) to depths of up to 3000m. Each hole is effectively “bent” (i.e. directionally drilled) so that the underground deposit can be intersected at multiple planned points, increasing the accuracy of the geological information gathered and facilitating the most productive possible development or expansion of mine production on any particular site.

The multiple intersection drilling methodology employed by DDH1 delivers a significant cost and time benefit to customers.

Highly accurate drilling

Conducting deep drilling operations at a mine site often follows time consuming and costly preparatory work. DDH1’s directional drilling techniques ensure reliable intersections of planned drill targets.

DDH1 Drilling’s directional drilling techniques ensure reliable, spatially accurate intersections of planned drill targets. We recognise that deep hole drilling is a costly business and those costs have been preceded by significant investment to refine drilling targets. Missing targets is not just about the cost of the hole but includes project costs when a critical decision is based on a drill hole result.

Our emphasis is on personalised service to design and deliver accurate drilling programs that achieve our client’s targets. We are confident that with our best-in-class drilling equipment, on-rig spatial software and highly experienced personnel, that we can deliver optimal results.

High quality sample cores

DDH1 delivers exceptional core presentation by using industry best practice and the most advanced technology available.

Core samples provide critical information about the lithology and structure of a rock, such as any shears, contacts, faults or mineralisation, and the potential orientation of any such structures. The core can also be assayed for elements of interest contained within the rock. Where information is the principal requirement, careful control and interpretation of all drilling indicators are essential. Inaccurate sampling intervals, partial recoveries, induced fractures or incorrect orientation of cores could result in poor quality or incomplete samples being produced, to the detriment of a drilling program.

At DDH1 Drilling, we understand the importance of sample quality and we strive to deliver exceptional core presentation by using industry best practice and the most advanced technology available.

What sets us apart

DDH1 Drilling’s roster system allows us to provide a 24/7 service necessary to complete our clients programs in an efficient and timely manner. The field personnel are experienced professionals who are selected not only for their technical skill but also for the ability to communicate clearly and interact well with client representatives. DDH1 Drilling’s support equipment includes all wheel drive trucks, rig office and store caravans with well appointed modern self contained camps. The latest communication systems are utilised in all remote areas.

Whether drilling on a mine site or conducting exploration in remote regions, DDH1 Drilling will match its operations, rig configuration, safety management and personnel to optimise the drilling outcome.

Diamond Coring

Diamond Core drilling involves using a hollow drill bit that has been impregnated with an industrial-grade diamond crown to cut a cylindrical core through solid rock. As the drill bit penetrates rock, a core is extracted in a solid cylinder and is winched to the surface through the centre of the drill rod in complete sections. This produces a rock sample that can be analysed for mineral content and also shows the structure of the cored interval.

Diamond Core drilling is used across all stages of the mine lifecycle and is the predominant drilling method used underground for exploration and ore grade identification. The main reasons for this are:

  • The need for lighter equipment suitable for shaft and decline access
  • The capability to set up in confined areas
  • The capability to drill deep holes in all directions
  • To minimise ventilation and power requirements
  • Substantially more detailed geological information can be obtained from a drill core than from sampling rock chips

DDH1 Drilling’s drilling services are predominantly focused on mine site and exploration coring as well as specialised deep directional and mine infrastructure drilling.

DDH1’s Diamond Core drilling offering

DDH1 Drilling operates the most standardised drilling fleet in Australia to perform Diamond Core drilling. Our crews are well trained and have experience in all different aspects of core drilling including:

  • Deep hole – core to 3,000 metres
  • Multiple intersection drill holes
  • Predictable directional drilling
  • Surface coring
  • Underground coring

For detailed geological data from quality core samples, DDH1 will be able to provide safe, hassle-free drilling with the right technical expertise and  rigs and equipment that are reliable and compliant.

Our agile drilling teams mobilise quickly to meet your timelines. Once on site, they will focus on achieving productive drilling results and importantly, on consistently hitting the target and delivering quality core samples by using industry best practice and the most advanced technology available.

Reverse Circulation

To accomplish drilling project objectives within budget, Reverse Circulation drilling offers a more cost effective drilling method for assaying chip samples and getting preliminary geological data prior to investing in detailed geological data from an exploration coring program. Reverse Circulation drilling is primarily used for exploration and grade control and can penetrate hard rock to depths of around 500 metres. Reverse circulation is also faster than coring which means more holes drilled.

DDH1 offers Reverse Circulation capabilities through our multi-purpose specialist rigs. We generally offer this service as a pathway to full Diamond Coring drilling. Our partner companies, Ranger Drilling and Strike Drilling, also provide specialist Reverse Circulation drilling services across the commodity chain.

Engineering Solutions

Our clients are able to call upon DDH1 as the premier provider of bespoke solutions to complex technical problems. Our breadth of experience allows us to provide highly accurate directional drilling used to drill mine service holes designed to break into existing mine workings at very specific points.

As a first step to most projects, DDH1 directionally drill pilot holes which are steered to the target by using advanced gyro down hole surveying and oilfield directional drilling equipment. These holes are used to deliver paste backfill directly from a surface paste plant to the underground area, to lower large high voltage electrical cables directly from surface to deep underground, and to pump ground water from underground workings.

Once the directionally drilled pilot core hole has broken through, the holes are then enlarged to accept a designed casing size. Enlarging the hole diameter is accomplished by using down hole hammers and significant expertise is required to ensure that holes are not blocked up or lost. We generally find that if holes are into open mine workings then spoil from the opening is allowed to drop into workings which minimizes down hole compressed air requirements.

As an example of our technical expertise, DDH1 drilled an electrical drop hole for a Western Australian client which involved a pilot hole to 1,446m. This hole was opened to 12.25 inches, cased with a 9 inch diameter 100 ton oilfield casing string and grouted back to surface with 60 cubic meters of grout. This hole is the deepest single pass cable drop hole in the Southern hemisphere and is now powering the deeper mine extensions.