Diamond core drilling is widely used as a diamond bit. Diamond drill bit is composed of small and industrial grade diamonds. Exploration of diamond drilling is different than other geological drilling. The drill uses a diamond encrusted drill bit to drill over the hard rock. Hard rock in drilling is around 7 to 8 on Mohs scale, where Mohs hardness scale shows the relative hardness of various minerals. Mohs hardness scale consists of numbers 1 to 10, wherein 10 is the hardest and 1 is the softest. Hard rock includes gneiss, jasperite, quartzite, and taconite.
Diamond drilling offers significant benefits over conventional drilling. Under this technique, cutting is more accurate than other techniques. It also reduces the chance of damage. This is driving the exploration diamond drilling market. The equipment is highly portable and lightweight and can be used in situations where space is at premium.
Furthermore, diamond drilling technique can be carried out in any location without fear of producing excess noise. This is also expected to be one of the key drivers of the exploration diamond drilling market. On the other hand, the size of the drill bits limits the hole size (1500mm). This is anticipated to hamper the market. However, this factor can be negated using a technique called stitch drilling. The De Beers Corporation, a key producer of mined diamond, announced that it had develop a synthetic meter detector that can automatically check authenticity of large volumes of small diamonds.
The exploration diamond drilling market can be segmented based on drilling type, technique, mine type, end-use industry, and region. In terms of drilling type, the market can be bifurcated into rotary drilling and wireline drilling. Wireline drilling is used for solid core sampling, while rotary drilling is used primarily for bore hole drilling. Based on mine type, the market can be segregated into open pit mines and closed pit mines. In terms of end-use industry, the market can be split into industrial and construction. Based on technique, the market can be divided into stitch drilling and underwater diamond drilling. Stich drilling technique overcomes the issue of size of drill bit during exploration of diamond drilling, as diamond bits usually do not come bigger than 1500mm. This makes it difficult to drill large holes. Stich drilling is used primarily when a site is too small for other methods of cutting. Diamond drilling is also suitable for underwater usage, such as working on water treatment facilities or off-shore platforms.
Based on region, the exploration diamond drilling market can be segmented into North America, Latin America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific is the key region of the exploration diamond drilling market, followed by North America and Europe. Russia is the leading diamond production country in the world. ALROSA Group dominates the total diamond production in the Russian Federation. Major mining companies are involved in mining diamonds in key producing countries, the exception being Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) in Africa, where diamond deposits are industrialized by prospectors and small companies. The mined diamond market is expected to contract at a sluggish pace, as existing mines get depleted and no major new deposits reserves are found. Thus, the supply of mined diamond is also expected to decline.
Key players operating in the global exploration diamond drilling market include Rodren Drilling, Adamas Drilling and Exploration, Hilti, BOSUN, Atlas Copco, and Diaset.
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