With an existing and substantial fleet of exploration drill rigs, geotechnical service specialist Geogroup intends to get back to the exploration space.
“Geomech Africa, a subsidiary company of Geogroup with its Level 1 Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment, has not been involved in any exploration drilling projects in the recent past, as the company’s attention has been focused on the geotechnical market. We are waiting for the mining sector to recover and stabilise from the latent effects of the 2008 financial crisis,” explains Geogroup director Grant Rijsmus.
The company believes that there is an expected and upcoming boom in the coal exploration sector, with several announcements of commitments to greenfield projects that are planned for development over the next two years.
“The company expects to benefit from this expected boom in exploration activity by being involved in projects in Limpopo, Mpumalanga and the Northern Cape,” notes Rijsmus.
He tells Mining Weekly that Geogroup’s current fleet consists of rigs that are continually maintained at the company’s 4000 m2 factory, in Lanseria, Johannesburg.
“This maintenance is carried out by our highly qualified and competent workshop team,” he adds.
Rijsmus notes that the equipment is also continually upgraded to meet all the health, safety and environmental requirements of the relevant mining houses.
“The benefit of using these rigs is that they are far less complicated than the newer rigs. This makes them more reliable and maintenance friendly. It ultimately gives us the ability to service our clients on time, as there are no delays because of importing complicated spares from Europe,” says Rijsmus.
Geogroup has a fleet of 33 exploration drilling rigs, ranging from very nimble, diverse tracked mounted rigs for difficult terrain and site conditions to very mobile trailer-mounted rigs and much larger skid-mounted rigs.
“Our rigs range from being able to drill 200 m holes to 2000 m holes. This, combined with us having worked all over Africa, puts Geogroup in a very favourable position in terms of offering clients a premium service.”
Geogroup uses Atlas Copco, Boart Longyear and Sullivan drill rigs. One of the Sullivan drill rigs is the company’s largest rig able to drill to a depth of 2 000 m.
Further, the company is continually trying to grow, adapt and advance its capabilities. “We also purchase rigs with rod-handling equipment to make the drilling operations safer for our teams. Another addition in advancing our offerings is the superior telemetry data-capturing to assist our clients with better information about the ground conditions,” concludes Rijsmus.