Geotechnical Investigations

Geotechnical Investigations

HGC specializes in planning and executing all forms of geotechnical investigations. By combining a comprehensive knowledge of engineering fundamentals, a strong desire to provide practical solutions and access to modern technology, HGC is able to provide our clients with quick, accurate and economical engineering solutions.

As identifying potential concerns early is important to reduce the overall project risk and geotechnical investigations occur in the early stages of project design, a properly planned and executed geotechnical investigation is key to a cost effective design for any project. Therefore, the procurement of an experienced consultant who can address all aspects of a project will ultimately reduce risk resulting in the best chance of the overall project being a success.

The principles of HGC have over 60 years of combined experience completing geotechnical investigations throughout Canada. We have completed countless investigations in support of design for bridges, highways, buildings, mines, tunnels, treatment plant sites, and pipeline projects. Our experience includes extensive work with track and truck mounted, heli-portable and marine capable drill rigs. The familiarity with all forms of subsurface boring and excavation allows us to undertake and successfully execute any geotechnical investigation requirements.

Project Examples

Kami Iron Ore Mine

HGC personnel were involved in a comprehensive geotechnical investigation for a proposed iron ore mine near Wabush, Labrador. A combination of three heli-portable and one track mounted rig were used in the sub surface investigation for various aspects of mining infrastructure including the tailings management facility, tailings pond, screening sites, railways, roadways, office buildings and rock quarries. A comprehensive sampling and testing program was undertaken including packer testing and vibrating wire piezometer installation and evaluations. Upon completion of the drilling program, a comprehensive report was provided to the client outlining the results of the investigation and providing recommendations on how to properly construct the various aspects of the mine.

Nanisivik Naval Facility, NU (2010 – 2015)

Located in the Strathcona Sound, Northern Baffin Island, the Nanisivik Naval Facility is a repurposed mine load-out facility. HGC personnel carried out various aspects of the project, including geotechnical programs (2011, 2012, and 2015) for the dock reconstruction, proposed tank farm and facility infrastructure. The field investigations consisted of drilling 22 land-based boreholes to depths of 6 to 100 m, a marine borehole to a depth of 35 m and the excavation of 17 test pits. Project challenges included difficult drilling conditions due to permafrost, presence of coarse grained soils and a stipulation that drilling mud could not be used due to environmental concerns. Slope inclinometers and thermistors were installed in many of the boreholes upon to monitor dock movements and permafrost profiles.