Diamond drilling is a technique used for mineral exploration. Diamond is a strong material and industrial diamonds, not diamonds used for jewelry, are sometimes used to make tools for the mining industry. Diamond drilling is used to ascertain if a site will be mined or not. A diamond drilling system has a rotary drill, the drill rod and the diamond bit. There are many careers you can pursue related to diamond drilling.
Surface Diamond Driller
Surface drillers tear down and transport drilling materials and supplies. When they get to a new location, they organize the new drill setup. They install safety devices, fences, barriers and other necessary aspects in the field. They keep daily drill logs and reports. Once drilling commences, they check for hazardous gases and conduct operational checks on the drill.
A driller's assistant (also called a driller's offsider) helps the crew set up, operate and move drilling equipment, and can also connect hoses for water, air and power supplies. Assistants may help obtain mineral core samples, plan and execute mud pits and drains, test drilling fluids and chemicals, help insert casing screens, lend a hand to welders, operate air and water pumps, and fix drill hole problems with tools and equipment. Driller's assistants also do routine maintenance and minor repairs. Maintaining equipment and camp sites may also fall within their responsibilities.
Geologists work in the diamond drilling arena because their expertise in minerals is essential. They plan and carry out the diamond drill layouts for exploration. They keep logs about the drilling and the core. They assist the chief geologist and are responsible for whatever accountabilities he has specified. Ideally, geologists should have a degree in geology or geological engineering.
Senior Mining Planning Engineer
A senior mining planning engineer's responsibilities can vary from mine site to mine site. But the professional in this position usually prepares budgets and plans, completes conceptual studies, partakes in long-term mine planning and forecasting, completes conceptual studies on mineral samples, monitors the engineering systems, keeps track of business processes, and ascertains how to make improvements and ensure work safety.
Diamond Drill Foreman
Another career in diamond drilling is the diamond drill foreman. The foreman ensures that all drilling personnel follow safety standards, are properly trained and mentored, and that contractors are working properly. In essence, the foreman offers leadership to the personnel. The foreman minimizes loss and maximizes productivity through preventive maintenance. Foremen make sure the equipment is set up properly and according to prearranged standards, including safety standards. The foreman ensures accurate reporting and current inventory. When it's time to move to a new site, the foreman is responsible for making the move efficient and safe.
- "Introduction to Mineral Exploration"; Charles Moon, Michael Whateley and Anthony M. Evans; 2006
- "Applied Mineral Inventory Estimation"; Alastair J. Sinclair and Garston H. Blackwell; 2006
- "Wills' Mineral Processing Technology: An Introduction to the Practical Aspects of Ore Treatment and Mineral Recovery"; Tim Napier-Munn and Barry A. Wills; 2006
- Photo Credit Photon-Photos/iStock/Getty Images
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