Underground Drilling


Mitchell Services is one of the rare underground drilling contractors to provide highly technical drilling operations in both the mineral and metallurgical coal sectors. The underground division represents 50 percent of our business, with state-of-the-art underground rigs and crew operating in some of Australia’s most prestigious underground mines.

Our late model fleet comprises a mix of skid, track and mobile carrier mounted configurations, with the capability to drill greater than 2,000m. In the Underground In Seam (UIS) division, our in-house engineering division has built and commissioned several of the most technologically advanced rigs available in underground coal mining. These intrinsically safe rigs have been industry awarded, with the capacity to complete horizontal, directionally steered drill holes up to 3,000m in length.

Several underground innovations have been developed as part of our commitment to Finding a Better Way, including surface to underground live video and communications, diamond rod handling, unattended auto drilling and laser barrier safety systems.

We provide a variety of adaptable exploration drilling rigs which are fitted to your specific needs for the underground environment.

Diamond Coring

Mitchell Services conducts conventional and wireline diamond coring throughout Australia. Our rig fleet has the capacity to diamond core greater than 2,000m. We specialise in multi-rig operations across a diverse mix of geological settings. Our crews and supervisors understand the need for safe and productive coring operations, with a significant focus on core recovery and presentation.

The high-capacity diamond coring rig fleet is currently completing underground diamond programs for the world’s major miners. Current contracts include multi year, multi rig diamond programs that require in excess of 100,000m of diamond coring per annum.

Mitchell has a specialist fleet of late model mobile carrier diamond rigs that are able to conduct fast and affective short hole diamond programs for the purposes of grade control. The rigs are fitted with diamond rod handlers and unattended auto drill functionality, while the mobile carrier units have enclosed cabs for added safety and protection when tramming.

drilling machinery in operation


Directional drilling is a highly specialised method of drilling operations whereby hole direction is carefully controlled and monitored in order to hit a specific target or position, often deep underground drilling. Mitchell Services is an expert in this field conducting highly complex directional programs using a mix of directional techniques. Navigational motors, wedges and various bottom hole assemblies are applied based on the geological formation, depth, directional parameters and desired client outcome.

Directional drilling is used for various applications, including resource definition drilling or mine services programs where holes need to be pinpoint from surface to underground workings. We are often asked to conduct ‘parent/daughter’ programs where multiple holes are drilled from the one collar point.

Mitchell Services has a dedicated directional team that uses specialist directional drilling software to design, plan and execute programs of this nature. During the execution phase, the hole path is then monitored using downhole survey technology to track the hole ‘flight path’ and ensure drill targets are intersected in the required position.

mitchell service employees looking at tablet

Underground In-Seam

Mitchell Services performs Underground In-Seam (UIS) drilling in underground mining for the purposes of gas seam extraction, water drainage, coal seam delineation, cross measure drilling and exploration in an efficient and safe manner. Holes are traditionally drilled horizontally from underground ‘stubs’, penetrating through, above or below the coal seam depending on the formation and application required.

Mitchell Services provides this highly technical, specialised service with the support of our Directional drilling or ‘steering’ division to be able to directionally steer holes through the desired flight path up to 3,000m. Flanking holes for development headings as well as candelabra patterns for the purposes of complex longwall block drainage are carefully designed to the highest levels of safety, production and desired outcomes.

Our in-house engineering division has designed, built and commissioned Mitchell’s very own intrinsically safe UIS rigs. These rigs are capable of drilling to 3,000m and come fitted with the latest technology included internal live visual communications from underground to surface.

mitchell services employees
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