The 26th DCA Annual Congress in Stratford-upon-Avon, UK was held as an attendance event and was very well attended with over 145 participants from Europe and the USA. After an absence of 10 years – in 2012 Cambridge was the venue – a DCA Annual Congress was again held on the British Isle. More than 10 new members from the UK in the last two years had persuaded the board to move the association’s main event to the birthplace of the famous playwright and lyricist William Shakespeare in England’s Midlands, despite Brexit. All participants quickly agreed that the professional exchange in the industry “face to face” during the congress and in the course of the once again extremely attractive spouse programme cannot be replaced by telephone calls or video conferences. You simply have to be there!
“To drill or not to drill, that’s the question ” was the stylish motto of the congress or perhaps expressed in other words, “how and by whom should the multitude of HDD projects actually be carried out in the course of the energy turnaround, the connections of the wind farms, the north-south connections of the high-voltage cables, the upcoming pipeline layings and quite apart from that in the course of the acute broadband expansion in the next two decades”. The investments that are being made are reaching dimensions that pose a great challenge to the industry in the wake of a constant shortage of skilled workers and supply bottlenecks, but thus also characterise it as an important building block of the energy transition, without these projects cannot in fact be realised. In addition, there are technical challenges for HDD technology and the supplier industry, especially in the area of laying the power lines, which have yet to be solved. These and other questions were discussed and answers sought during the three-day congress.
After an introductory highly interesting lecture by Heinz Leuters, experienced pilot and flight instructor as well as certified leadership expert on the topic “Don’t f**k up the Landing” “Mastering risks when they occur – Making situation-specific decisions”, there were again two workshops on the topics “The role of drilling mud in the borehole“ and “Accuracy in HDD drillings“ in addition to interesting lectures on HDD technology. Conclusion: Both topics are far from having been dealt with and discussed to the end. However, there is a clear tendency to discuss the topic of “Accuracy in HDD drillings” in more detail at the next DCA members’ forum in May 2023.
From the series of technically and thematically very appealing presentations on both congress days, the joint presentation by Renzo Chirulli, Vermeer and Thorsten Kaas, Max Streicher GmbH & Co. KG on the subject of “Plug & Drill – The fully electric HDD Jobsite”. Although both companies are factually competing on the market and thus naturally want to place their products and services first and foremost, the two lecturers understood how to present the topic in an excellent manner, factually and technically at a high level, without the focus on their own product becoming apparent here. From the point of view of President Jorn Stoelinga and his board, the lecture was a living association work in the sense of the DCA family! Many thanks for that!
The congress documents and the presentations of the workshops as well as further information on the event will soon be available for viewing and downloading in the members’ area.
See you again at the 27th edition of the DCA Annual Congress on 4th – 6th October 2023 in Leipzig in the east of the Republic. Please note the date!