Pond Leak Location & Leak Detection

HGI’s pond leak location & leak detection system utilizes the electrical resistivity method to locate leaks in geosynthetic liners.  Our method is based on the premise that electrical current will flow through the same pathways that water would be allowed to flow due to a leak.  “Electrical” leaks in pond infrastructure will measure as low resistance values because the electrical current can easily flow through these areas.  Where the HDPE liner is intact, the resistance values are high due to the fact that the liner is an electrical insulator.

With HGI’s Pond Leak Location Technology, personnel never enter the water…

HGI has created a pond leak location & leak detection system with the advantage of personnel never having to enter the pond. The development of this system allows for much safer working conditions by keeping operators at the waters edge and out of the water.   Given the stringent health and safety standards of our clients, this is an attractive attribute of our surveys.   The system can accommodate ponds up to 800 feet in width, with plans to increase the systems capability to 1,100 feet.  In addition, HGI has developed a floating array, which uses a sub-centimeter accuracy GPS system to synchronize with the measured data, for use in ponds where other leak location methods are impractical.

To accomplish a set of leak detection measurements over a pond area, a transmitting (Tx) source is first established by installing an array of sensors outside of the lined pond area.  These sensors are wired back to a staging area, where they are connected to electrical resistivity equipment.

Pond Leak Location current flow graphic

Illustration of current flow through a leak in a geosynthetic lined system.

Measurements are made with an electrical resistivity meter and perturbations in the primary field can be attributed to changes in the integrity of the HDPE liner.     For example, if seams of the liner are delaminated, or small tears or holes exist in the liner, then these areas would allow electrical current to flow through the openings, causing anomalous voltage readings to be centered over these areas.

In traditional leak location surveys, geometry and signal attenuation issues can be a problem because only one transmitter is used.  HGI solves this problem by using multiple transmitters.  Our data acquisition equipment will acquire data using all transmitters and receivers during the survey.  While survey line separation is critical in any method, the nature of our system means that sensitivity at each acquisition point is never in question.  Thus, line separation becomes a matter of resolution, which is tailored to the clients’ objectives.

HGI does not employ traditional wading surveys as described in the ASTM guidelines.  In these types of surveys the equipment circuit could become broken and the operator may never know.  Transmitter and receiver are completely separate systems and if procedures are not followed correctly, a complete survey could be done with an open circuit and thus no leaks found.  HGI solves this problem by using highly technical and specialized equipment that houses the transmitter, receivers, and data logging in a single system.  Additionally, the data is observed in real-time by experienced operators who can actively monitor data quality to ensure that the system is working correctly.


Watch the video below for more details on

HGI’s liner leak location technology



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