THERMAL RESISTIVITY MEASUREMENT OF SOIL AND BACKFILL MATERIAL


Powertech provides field and laboratory testing services to measure the thermal resistivity of soils or backfill materials required for underground transmission lines, oil and gas pipelines, radioactive waste disposal, and solar thermal storage facilities.

As an organization built on knowledge and technical expertise, we provide only the most experienced geotechnical engineers to describe the thermal behavior of your soil. One of our largest customers is BC Hydro, a large electric utilities company in Canada. However, we also provide services to a number of global clients in the electric and gas industry.

Estimating thermal behavior of soil should be part of any cable design or any thermal storage facility design. It is the only way for you to receive a complete soil diagnostic that will allow you to determine the variations and/or characteristics of thermal dissipation that exist in the soil. This extremely valuable information helps you determine the correct cabling requirements, cable alignments, and if necessary, identify the suitable cable backfill material.

When using Powertech’s soil thermal resistivity services you can expect the following:

On-site thermal resistivity measurements.

On-site thermal resistivity measurements.

First Stage:

  • Onsite Thermal Resistivity testing of the area in which cables or thermal storage facility is proposed to be installed.
  • Collection of representative soil samples

Second Stage:

  • Soil samples are taken back to the Powertech laboratory for further evaluation. Each sample will be dried to identify thermal resistivity with variations of moisture content. The density and water content play an important role in determining the soil thermal resistivity.
  • In cases when the soil samples indicate that the thermal dissipation is not suitable, Powertech provides testing of various potential backfill materials for you with a recommendation on the most suitable backfill material for your needs.
Laboratory thermal resistivity measurements of a rock sample.

Laboratory thermal resistivity measurements of a rock sample.

Laboratory thermal resistivity measurements of a soil sample.

Laboratory thermal resistivity
measurements of a soil sample.