Published: June 30, 2018 | Last updated: July 5, 2023

What Does Transmitter Mean?

A transmitter is an electrical device that is installed on a Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) cutting head. The transmitter emits a magnetic field which is intercepted by a receiver at the ground surface.

These signals allow operators to determine the drill’s location and depth at any given point in time. Other information including pitch, roll, temperature, and battery status may also be transmitted back to the receiver.

A transmitter is also known as a sonde.


Trenchlesspedia Explains Transmitter

The transmitter is usually placed in a housing unit behind the HDD cutting head. As drilling progresses, a crew member walks directly above the drill bit at ground level with a handheld receiver unit. This receiver unit collects the information emitted by the transmitter which then sends it to the drill rig operator’s station.

Once the drill operator has collected the location information from the transmitter, they can then adjust the bore path to any desired location.




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