DCA Europe

Members‘ Forum

Recommendation – Education – Networking

Members‘ Forum

Since January 2018, the DCA has been offering a new event, the so-called DCA Member Forum HDD Technology.The forum offers a platform for members of the association to exchange experiences and is primarily aimed at site managers and machine operators, but is also open to interested technical supervisors, planners and Clients as well as interested parties from the supplier industry. Participation in the forum is free of charge and reserved exclusively for members. Since 2022, the event has been held in parallel in two linguistically separate rooms (German speaking/English speaking group).

The following member forums have already been held:

The DCA-Member Forum HDD-Technic will take place for the fourth time in Aachen on Wednesday, 3rd May 2023. After the kick-off event at the beginning of 2018 at DCA member Open Grid-Europe in Essen on the subject of “HDD-Trouble Shooting”, there was followed in the years since by many interesting workshops on changing topics. In the course of the Members’ Forum 2023, the focus will now be on the topic of “Accuracy in HDD-drillings”. As in previous years, this HDD workshop will again take place in two language-separated groups.

The topic “Accuracy in HDD-drillings” was already on the program at the 26th annual congress of the association in Stratford-upon-Avon as workshop 2. The accuracy of a horizontal directional drilling is one of the most important quality features of this closed construction. After all, the drilling is to be created with the greatest possible accuracy along a planned drilling line of different lengths and the desired target point is to be reached! There are a number of hurdles to be overcome between the first meter drilled in the pilot bore and the final position of the inserted media pipe, which make this undertaking more difficult.

Despite lively discussions during the workshop on the different measurement methods, among other things, it was not possible to look at it comprehensively due to the limited time. As the topic was of great interest to the membership, it will now be the topic of the Member Forum 2023 and in the course of this the contents will be intensified once again.

The workshop is primarily aimed at decision-makers, project and site managers, technical supervisors as well as planners and clients of DCA member companies, but is also open to foremen and maschine operators from HDD drilling technology trained in accordance to GW 329. Participation is free of charge and reserved for DCA member companies.

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The 4th DCA Member Forum, which took place in Aachen at the beginning of May 2022 under the topic “Use of tools in the borehole”, had a new record participation of about 50 participants from different countries. For the first time the forum which was designed exclusively for DCA members, was held in two linguistically separate groups, analogous to the workshops at the annual congress.

Under the direction of the two moderators President Jorn Stoelinga (English-speaking group) and board member Jörg Himmerich (German-speaking group) a total of five one-hour blocks were filled with interesting presentations and discussions: The overarching theme was “the use of tools in the borehole,” with the first block serving to explain how tools work in general: How is a drill head controlled, how do the different reamers actually work, and why do different ground conditions require different tools. The following four other topic blocks explained in more detail the different soil conditions and their specific tools.

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The 3rd DCA Member Forum, which took place in Aachen under the theme “New trenchless techniques linked to HDD technology” at the end of January 2020, was well attended with 23 participants. 10 regular and 13 associate member companies, including clients from both gas pipeline construction and cable laying, took part.

At the annual congress in Krakow in October 2019, the DCA had held a workshop on the topic of “New trenchless techniques linked to HDD technology”, in which intensive discussions were held with the participants on the areas of application of the other laying methods as well as on the advantages and disadvantages compared to the classic HDD technology.

In addition to the above mentioned points, the application limits and the costs of the individual methods were also discussed. The methods compete with HDD in the field of large and small drilling technology and complement the classical construction method.

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On 05.02.2019, the second DCA Member Forum HDD Technology took place in Aachen. The event was held as part of a workshop on the topic of “Requirements for small drilling technology”. A total of 18 people took part in the members’ forum. Nine drilling companies, three planners and one client and further suppliers were present. Three participants had to cancel due to illness.

The following points were discussed:

  • Definition Small Scale Drilling
  • Requirements in the DCA-Guidelines to small scale drilling technology
  • Project classification according to degree of difficulty (see chapter 10.5.1 ff of the TR)
  • Drilling mud disposal
  • Dealing with inadequate planning on the construction site/ Dealing with unreasonable demands of the client etc.

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The first members‘ forum on HDD technology took place on 18th January 2018 in Essen at the invitation of DCA member Open Grid Europe. Under the motto “HDD Trouble-Shooting”, the DCA has set itself the goal of establishing a kind of “error culture” within the membership.

The HDD drilling companies in the DCA are well aware of the unplanned and undesirable incidents that can complicate the work or cause additional work in practice during drilling. In order to increase the quality and reliability of the HDD process as a whole, these experiences should be used more and more in the volume.

Read more in our members’ area.