Utility Survey Corp. has been in the utility locating business for over 20 years and we’re often asked if we use X-ray to look for conduits, rebar etc. inside of concrete slabs?
The answer is always; No, we have a better option for you; Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR)!
Only GPR will provide our clients with a safer, more efficient, and lower-cost way to achieve their objectives. In most cases it is the only technology that can do the job.
Ground Penetrating Radar is the only real choice for pretty much any concrete slab scanning application where there’s a need to find rebar, mesh, conduits, post-tension cable, voids, delamination, slab-thickness etc. And here’s why:
GPR only needs access to one side of the slab whereas X-ray needs both sides - and this is impossible in most applications. For example, slabs-on-grade cannot be scanned with X-ray but they’re routine and perfect for GPR.
X-ray generates harmful radio waves, GPR does not. The benefits of this are obvious; there’s no potential danger to our technicians or our clients with GPR and it requires no elaborate and cumbersome Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) to be worn. Also, No designated safe area is necessary with GPR but a clear zone of around 100 feet in all directions away from the work area is needed for X-ray. This means that a great deal of unwanted, unnecessary, and most times unacceptable, disruption and/or shut-down of the client’s workplace is avoided with GPR.
The latest Ground Penetrating Radar systems that we use are very compact, highly portable, and can access areas of a job site that X-ray cannot. Many of our clients need to drill, core or bore through slabs in out-of the way, discrete places. Inside of a closet to run pipes through the slab seems to be a favorite, for example. Scanning and marking a clear path for these pipes can only be done with our hand-held, Palm antenna GPR systems.
Many of our clients want to know if there is anything lying underneath concrete slabs in addition to what may be inside of them. With rapid interchangeable antenna capability, our GPR systems are an excellent tool for this.
GPR also gives us on-site, on-screen, imaging which X-ray does not. The GPR units are even equipped with an odometer which enables the technician to back up over a target for another look and evaluation in real time. Impossible with X-ray.
Last but not least, GPR is a far more cost-effective option than X-ray. GPR requires almost no setup time. Time that the client is paying for and which is better spent doing the important work. No costly off-site data processing is needed with GPR. Information is provided immediately and marked on the slab. This allows clients to do their work without delay providing for efficiency and further cost savings.
To summarize; Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) provides a safer, lower cost, more versatile, option for scanning concrete structures than X-ray.
Call Utility Survey Corp. when you need to know what’s inside of, or on the other side of, that concrete floor, wall or ceiling. Let us tell you where it’s safe to saw-cut, drill, or core.
Find out more about Ground Penetrating Radar and concrete structure scanning...
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