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Geotechnical field expertise goes digital with Geotab

L’expertise terrain en géotechnique passe au numérique grâce à Geotab

Our colleagues in the geotechnical department recently accelerated their transition to digital technology with Geotab, a tablet software that allows data to be entered and validated directly on site.

Taking advantage of a Quebec innovation developed by Sobek Technologies, the geotechnical teams can now transmit data from their field surveys directly from the worksite. A first cohort of six technicians recently experimented with this new tool that promises to revolutionize data collection practices.

When digital technology takes over the field

Known for its Geotec software and now with Geotab, the Quebec company Sobek Technologies is well established in the field and recognized by specialists. In short, Geotab facilitates the capture and validation of survey data directly at the worksite on Android tablets. The application allows, among other things, to save transcription time, to avoid errors and to perform a preliminary validation to ensure that all the survey data is available before leaving the site.

Our colleagues from the geotechnical department, as well as from the environmental characterization and rehabilitation department, tried out the software in a first phase with the purchase of six annual licenses. The experience was positive, and despite a few technical problems that were quickly resolved, the teams were able to benefit from the advantages of live data management in the field. Here are a few highlights relayed by our teams following their experience:

  • Drilling report in PDF format: The drilling report can be received quickly at the end of each drilling day in PDF format. This report generated by the Geotab application is clear, readable, clean and represents all necessary information. The PDF drilling report can be sent to the client as a preliminary version without having to redo it on Geotec.
  • Photo taking: The Geotab application allows for the taking of photos during the acquisition of drilling data, i.e. photos of the location of drill holes, photos of samples (cores, spoons, etc.) as well as any other photos taken on site. These photos are grouped in the same file and generated at the same time as the drilling report.
  • Drilling location and sketch: The drilling location can be done with the GPS location option, the X and Y coordinates and the spindle are automatically calculated with this option. Once the borehole location is done, it can be visualized on the map with the Gmap option.

Training on the use of the Geotab application at the job site was recently offered to field personnel by the software developer. This training allowed the employees to better understand the different options and also the proper way to acquire data at the construction site. Regular collaboration with Sobek Technologies’ support staff has also allowed us to bring up problems experienced in the field and to optimize the software with certain updates.

This is another fine example of digital transition applied to our field expertise, a success that could not have been achieved without the outstanding collaboration of our site teams!