The RoXplorer® is a unique coiled tubing (CT) drilling platform that delivers the safety, environmental and productivity benefits of CT drilling in a light weight, agile and robust platform suitable for mineral exploration drilling. RoXplorer® is designed to drill unconsolidated cover and hard rock formations delivering highquality samples of drill cuttings and core to depths of 500m.


The key feature of RoXplorer® CT drill rig is the patented mast design and over-the-hole positioning of the coil reel with multiple benefits including:

  • Increased coil life
  • Seamless transition between CT and conventional top-drive drilling
  • Rapid loading and unloading of tooling
  • Drill string incorporated on the rig for ease of set up, pack down and transport

Fluid management for the RoXplorer® CT drilling platform is provided by a purpose-built Hydraulic Processing System (HPS), coupled with a universal polymer fluid additive, LiqiCTrol. The HPS and LiqiCTrol deliver benefits over-and-above
conventional mud systems including:

  • Reduced fluid management costs
  • Real-time and remote monitoring
  • Automated dosing
  • Multifactor performance optimisation (cuttings transport, sample quality, fluid cleaning, bore hole integrity)
  • Agile response to changed or adverse conditions (e.g. to mitigate fluid loss events)
  • Reduced wear on downhole tools

While drilling in CT mode there are no rod connections and no spinning drill rods on surface, effectively removing two of the most significant safety hazards on the drill site.

Energy and water efficient:

The RoXplorer® CT drilling platform has low energy and water consumption compared to top-drive rotary and pneumatic percussion drilling systems.

No energy is used spinning drill rods and less energy is required to drive downhole motors and hammers using noncompressible fluids compared to pneumatic drilling systems.

All drilling fluids are recirculated through the HPS to the drilling operation removing the need for fluid sumps on the drill site and reducing the risk of surface spills.

Continuous fluid monitoring and dosing with LiqiCTrol mitigates fluid loses to the formation and helps maintain hole integrity.

High quality sampling:

The dynamics of fluid and cuttings transport within the drill hole and through the RoXplorer® and HPS are predictable and can be managed to deliver high quality cuttings samples that are representative of the interval drilled.

The HPS includes a cuttings sampling system which can be tuned by the user to a chosen sample volume and particle size threshold (with minimum mesh size of 150μ).

Cuttings sample quality and depth fidelity have been benchmarked by twinning rotary mud/ diamond and RC drill holes in multiple drilling scenarios and ground conditions.

Cuttings samples are well-suited to in-field analysis (e.g. pXRF, hyperspectral scanning) for real time generation of geological data.

The ability to collect drill core delivers a key benefit for mineral exploration end-users who place high value on rock texture and structural information collected from the bore hole.

Project Industry Participants:
  • Anglo American
  • BHP
  • Epiroc
  • South32
  • Wassara
  • Minerals Research Institute of Western Australia (MIRWA)
Project Research Participants:
  • Curtin University
  • UniSA

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