Water sampling techniques for use at mine sites

14 September 2023


In the world of environmental research and monitoring, obtaining accurate water samples is crucial for assessing the quality and safety of our water resources. Mines present a range of applications, conditions and challenges, but there are many options available to fulfil the need.  Here are some options HydroTerra can offer:



When looking for a disposable, cost-effective and easy-to-use method for taking water samples, Hydrasleeves are a great option.  Hydrasleeves are ideal for taking samples at larger depths.

A recent development has been the use of Hydrasleeves with drones. This new technology provides an alternative option to using boat-based water sampling crews, increasing worker safety.





Bailers and Biobailers:

Bailers are ideal for obtaining high quality, representative samples of groundwater from specific depths. They allow for the collection of water that has just flowed into a well at the desired sampling point. This can avoid purging and disposal of purged water.


Bailers are available in stainless-steel construction of varying lengths, diameters and capacity and are suitable for re-use.


Biobailers are also available for limited sampling. They are made of biogradable PVC designed to biodegrade in a microbe rich landfill environment.



Pumps – Double Valve and Bladder Pumps:

Double valve pump

Double Valve Pumps and Bladder Pumps are efficient solutions for groundwater sample extraction, particularly for Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).


Double Valve Pumps ensure high-quality samples with benefits like, high flow rates, easy maintenance, and durability in harsh conditions. They are easily transportable, reduce sampling time, and minimize the risk of cross-contamination, excellent features for when working in demanding mining environments.


Need to do sampling from a significant depth? Then Double Valve Pumps may be a very good option as they will operate at a submergence depth of 150m. That is up to 150m below the standing water level.


Bladder pump

Bladder Pumps provide consistent, accurate, and reliable groundwater samples in all applications, with the options for both PTFE and cost-effective polyethylene bladders. These stainless-steel pumps are effective at various angles, can reach depth of up to 150m, and are ideal for low flow sampling.


Double Valve Pumps Bladder Pumps


Discrete Interval Samplers:

Discrete Interval Samplers allow for precise extraction of groundwater samples from various depths within wells, including beneath and within product layers. Pressurized with a hand pump before deployment prevents water from entering during descent. Upon pressure release, the samplers collect samples directly from the desired zone, enhancing accuracy and conserving water. In mining, where resource conservation and precise data are crucial, these samplers come in handy.



Discrete Interval Samplers


Submersible Pumps:

Submersible Pumps efficiently extract groundwater from depths of up to 36.5 meters with adjustable flow rates up to 13.5 L/min. Its compact 6” design allows it to easily navigate wells that may not be straight and fit in 2” PVC pipes. It also includes a LED status indicator.


This lightweight, portable system comes with a 3-year warranty on the controller, making it a reliable choice for groundwater pumping.

Submersible Pumps


Low Flow Sampling Kits

Low flow purging and sampling involves extracting groundwater at rates comparable to ambient groundwater flow (typically less than 500 ml/min), so that the drawdown of the water level is minimized, and the mixing of stagnant water with water from the screened intake area in a well is reduced

Low Flow Sampling kits involve the use of a pump (e.g. Bladder or Double-valve Pump), a controller (such as the Solinst 464 Electronic Pump Control Unit), and a compressed air supply (air compressor or bottled gas).


Low Flow Sampling Kits


Drone Boats

The Flow Seeker drone boat by Surfbee

This is a technology we are looking at developing further in the next few months.  We are investigating a drone boat with an integrated autosampler and a drone boat for bathymetric survey work. An ideal platform, which is locally manufactured, has already been identified in the form of the Flowseeker.

There are significant advantages to using a drone boat for sampling on water bodies. For example, being able to take reliable samples from the exact same position in a short time. There is also the big advantage of increased safety when not having to deploy boats on difficult-to-access water bodies.  Watch this space