Spotlight: Pipe & Cable Locating Equipment

Products from MALA GeoScience, Sensors & Software, Heath Consultants, Sensit Technologies, Radiodetection, Pipehorn Utility, McLaughlin, Vivax-Metrotech, SubSurface Instruments, Ditch Witch and Schonstedt Instrument.

MALA GeoScience

The Easy Locator locates buried objects such as non-metallic and non-conductive utilities that include PVC water and gas lines, ductile iron, concrete, terracotta or other conflicts. The system boasts an easy user interface with almost complete automation of settings whereby the user needs to provide minimal input to begin measurements. Interchangeable antennas are available for shallow or medium depth situations where most utilities are installed. Extra upgrades include jpeg screen shots of a scanned utility radargram as well seamless integration with GPS. The latest feature is the depth calibration tool that readily computes the depth to targets on-screen. 843.852.5021,

Sensors & Software

Detecting deep buried utilities with GPR is now possible using the Noggin 100. With an operating frequency 2.5 to 5 times lower than normal utility-locating GPRs, and a larger antenna surface, the Noggin 100 offers increased penetration to detect deeper utilities. The Noggin 100 system also provides the best opportunity of finding utilities in poor GPR environments with high signal attenuation. Noggin GPRs balance flexibility and simplicity in an easy-to-use package for full subsurface imaging functionality. The SmartCart and SmartTow configurations allow rapid coverage of large areas. Geo-referenced mapping is easy with integrated GPS positioning. 800.267.6013,

Heath Consultants

The Sure-Lock multi-frequency pipe and cable locator is designed to increase locating accuracy and productivity. With frequencies ranging from 8.1K to 480kHz, a field technician can easily locate audio, radio and ultra-high frequencies. A unique feature of the All Pro is “continuous depth” readings. No need to press a button for your depth, a depth reading is continually displayed on the receiver as you near the target conductor. All Pro can provide you multi-frequency technology in a simple two-button operation, allowing your field technicians to become expert locators more quickly. 800.HEATH-US,

Sensit Technologies

A new technology with the promise to provide accurate location data about buried pipe has been licensed to Sensit Technologies. This technology, developed by Gas Technology Institute (GTI), is expected to save the industry millions of dollars by helping to reduce the potential for damage to buried pipes and the resulting incidents that can create customer outages. The handheld technology has been demonstrated to detect and locate small-diameter plastic pipes to depths of up to five feet and has been tested for the most common ground conditions, including concrete, tar, grass, and dirt. The buried pipe can be detected in most soil conditions. 219.465.2733,


A rechargeable battery pack is now available for Radiodetection’s Precision Cable & Pipe Locator ranges. The new pack, compatible with all RD5000, RD7000+ and RD8000 models, offers both operational flexibility and improved cost-of-ownership to locating professionals. Operators won’t need to replace, manage and recycle alkaline batteries, reducing the associated costs, workload and environmental burden. With a run-time equivalent to the best alkaline batteries at normal operating temperatures, and significantly improved in cold temperatures where alkaline batteries can struggle, the rechargeable pack can be fully charged in only three hours and topped-up or charged on the move from vehicle lighter sockets with the optional DC charger. The battery pack also can be specified as an option when ordering Radiodetection’s RD5000WL, RD7000+ or RD8000 precision cable and pipe locator kits. 626.796.6637,

Pipehorn Utility

The Pipehorn 800 Series boasts new improvements. The high-frequency pipe and cable locator features the same high frequency (480 kHz) performance as the Classic Pipehorn. It works on cast iron, un-energized power (streetlights), tracer tapes and worn out tracer wires, short side services and fiber. New simultaneous conductive transmission of both high (480 kHz) and low (9 kHz) frequencies provides better performance in congested underground areas. A new fast-response signal strength meter and sharp audio tone combine for precise pinpointing in all conditions. The transmitter features a new all- weather / high impact ABS housing. Audio tones indicate “transmitter on”, battery strength and good connection. The Pipehorn comes in a new lightweight, space saving carry bag. 800.952.3710,

McLaughlin’s GPS-enabled utility locator uses one-touch operation using a software application that allows its Verifier G2 utility locator to share real-time data with an integrated Magellan GPS unit installed on the Verifier G2 utility locator. A software application loaded into the locating receiver allows the receiver, through a serial port, to export real-time depth, current measurement index (CMI), frequency and locator mode (peak or null) to the integrated GPS unit. A second software program allows the Windows-based GPS units to receive the locator data. When the GPS unit receives that data, it cues the Magellan unit to record the latitude and longitude coordinates for the specific underground facility. Facility owners can download the raw data into a geographic information system (GIS) as a layer. They can use it to update existing or create new maps. It can also be overlaid on aerial photos or as-builts, along with the other surface facilities that they’ve mapped providing a bird’s-eye view of the excavation site, giving facility owners a much clearer picture of where those lines run from a big-picture perspective. 800.435.9340,


The vLocPro system is a completely new system for pipe and cable location. The system has a classic look with an intuitive user interface designed to minimize training needed when transition from other manufacturers’ equipment. Both receiver and transmitter allow use of any frequency between 50Hz and 200 kHz. The usual broadband Passive Power & radio modes are also accompanied by specific narrow band, 50Hz & 60Hz narrow band modes. Both transmitter and receiver operating systems can be upgraded via a standard USB interface – making for the ease of additional software options and enhancements from your PC. 800.638.7682,

SubSurface Instruments

The PL-1500 LOW Transmitter has 3.0 watts power output in the Direct Connection Mode, allowing locates for longer distances. Use the Inductive Mode to quickly locate shorter pipes and cables. The PL-1500 Receivers are very light-weight, weighing only 3.5 pounds, with large, easy-to-read LCDs and thumb-controlled switches. The single vertical bar (line) in the receiver displays above is the “Peak Hold” feature. The Peak Hold shows the maximum signal measured in the last 3 seconds. Press the “DEPTH” switch, and the depth is displayed (down to 16 feet deep). The PL-1500 Transmitters show the actual, measured Output Current in the Direct Connection Mode. If the Output Current is low, then increase the Output Power Level or move the Ground Stake. 920.347.1788,

Ditch Witch
w/digital photo

The 980T dual-purpose electronic transmitter can transmit signals to any Ditch Witch pipe and cable locator or fault locator. Equipped with automatic mode-sensing capability, the 980T detects the type of cable that is plugged in and automatically transmits the appropriate signal to the fault or line locator. The 980T also can transmit to a line locator via direct line connection, induction clamp or induced broadcast signals. Simultaneous 8 and 29 kHz transmission to a line locator makes an alternate signal available if one is hard to detect, while higher frequencies locate metallic lines with insulators that weaken or block low frequencies. Fault-locating mode includes a pulse rate of three to four seconds and an LCD display of pulse; fault impedance indicator gives an approximate value to the fault. 800.654.6481,

Schonstedt Instrument
The TraceMaster II offers a remote link between the transmitter and the receiver units – a radio frequency two-way communications channel is used, and makes it possible to change the transmitter frequency from the receiver up to 1,500 feet away. TraceMaster II offers four classes of frequencies. The low range frequency is the best choice for tracing over long cable lines. Medium range frequencies are generally the most useful range for location. If the signal is weak during the beginning of a trace, you can switch to a higher range frequency. Very high range frequencies are good for rapidly sweeping for all utilities in a congested area. The locator features simple operation with only two buttons and two knobs. No transmitter settings are required. In addition, the receiver has the ability to operate in manual or automatic gain modes. 800.999.8280,

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