Before there was Noggin, Conquest, LMX or Rescue Radar, there was pulseEKKO. pulseEKKO systems are the initial GPRs designed and built by Sensors & Software. Discerning professionals around the world know of the superior performance and signal quality of the pulseEKKO brand.
The product evolved from the early days of GPR, when many of the data collection techniques we take for granted today were still being developed by Sensors & Software and other GPR pioneers. This required a GPR system with the flexibility to change any data collection parameter or deployment configuration to try something new - time window length, temporal sampling interval, step size, stacking and triggering. Flexibility was also required to go beyond simple common-offset reflection data collection (the standard method for Noggin, Conquest and LMX) and change the antenna geometry for collection of Common-Mid-point (CMP, see the accompanying story), Wide Angle Reflection and Refraction (WARR), cross polarization, borehole, transillumination and multi-channel surveys. Today's pulseEKKO still retains this flexibility; this sets it apart from any other GPR system in the world and makes it the system of choice for GPR professionals.
A wide range of antenna frequencies are available for the pulseEKKO - from 12.5 to 1000 MHz - to cover every conceivable application for GPR: Antarctic ice sheets, glaciers, deep geology/stratigraphy, mining, geotechnical investigations, archaeology, forensics, utility detection, roads, bridges, and concrete.
Further, pulseEKKO systems offer several deployment configurations - Fully Bistatic, One-Person, SmartCart, SmartTow and SmartChariot to provide efficient data collection in any terrain, temperature and environment.
After more than 30 years of innovation, pulseEKKO systems continue to improve. The latest evolution of pulseEKKO - the DVL-500P data logger-has many features to make GPR surveys easier and your time in the field more efficient.
DVL-500P for pulseEKKO - New Software Features
Many parameter screens show a graphic or animation to help explain their purpose; a mini training course on the screen - very useful for novices. Once you are finished setting up the survey parameters, enter a name and save the configuration for future surveys. Multiple system configurations can be saved, allowing users to easily switch between them while collecting data
The new user interface makes setting up surveys simple. Default parameters based on the antenna frequency are available.
The DVL-500P allows the operator to easily optimize the Line Scan image on the DVL screen: change the color palette, gain or background subtraction filter, all without affecting the raw data. Further, zoom in to see a feature and zoom out to see the big picture - all while still collecting data!
During data collection, if a feature of interest is found, add a field interpretation by touching the screen. A colored dot appears at the location and the GPS coordinates of the feature are saved to the GPR project (GPZ) file and to a separate CSV file available when the data is copied to a PC. Field interpretations are available in colors to differentiate different types of features.
The user interface makes it very easy to set up and collect a grid of data.
Select the grid size, square or rectangular. Set the line spacing and line direction. Use the on-screen automatic hypotenuse calculation to assist with setting up the grid with right angle corners. The user interface guides you through grid collection, always indicating where you should start the next line and the direction. The Auto-stop option uses the odometer distance to automatically stop the grid line; this makes collecting a grid fast and efficient. Obstacle in the way? End the line at the obstacle and collect the second part of the line on the other side of the obstacle.
When grid collection is complete (or even partially complete) use the Slice View option to generate depth slices in the field and then slice up and down to different depth and look for targets.
The Map View screen displays a plan view of the GPR survey based on GPS. This shows the paths of GPR lines and grids. It also displays any field interpretations and fiducials/flags added to the data during data collection. This is a very powerful tool for seeing the spatial relationship of subsurface features of interest. It also suggests other areas you might want to collect data before leaving the site.
All the data line paths, grids, field interpretations and flags are also saved to a Google Earth KMZ file, available when the GPR data is transferred to a PC.
DVL-500P for pulseEKKO - New Hardware Features
The new DVL-500P screen makes accessing the user interface easier - even when wearing gloves. If using the touch screen is not desired, the DVL also has buttons to access all menu options.
The internal GPS is used to geo-reference GPR screen captures and grids. The internal GPS is about as accurate as the GPS in your Smartphone or your car - it provides the approximate position of a GPR survey on the Earth - useful for many reconnaissance surveys. When more positional accuracy is required, the DVL-500P accommodates an external GPS.
The DVL Bluetooth capability is used to trigger data collection when an odometer wheel is impractical, for example, during a fully bi-static survey across rough terrain or in highly vegetated areas. When collecting data with a 2-person crew, the Bluetooth trigger allows either person - the person carrying the DVL or the person at the antennas - to trigger the data trace collection.
With a USB port on the DVL-500P, use a USB-memory stick to quickly copy data from the DVL to a PC for plotting, editing, processing, interpreting and reporting using the EKKO_Project software.
Connect to a network using the Wi-Fi and e-mail a mini report, consisting of a data image and the data collection parameters, from the field - very useful to get a quick answer to customers or to get feedback from a colleague before continuing with the survey.
The new DVL-500P is compatible with most pulseEKKO PRO components - transmitters, receivers, antennas, odometers, and is still compatible with pulseEKKO 100 transmitters.
The addition of feature-rich DVL-500P to the pulseEKKO system truly creates a GPR system with no limits.