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Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE)


Subsurface Utility Clearance picture caption:

We use state of the art geophysical techniques to detect, trace, and map buried utilities or other obstructions in the vicinity of proposed excavations.


Every design, engineering and construction project relies heavily on data that shows precise lateral and sometimes vertical locations of underground utilities. Too often, aged files, records and plans fail to reveal updated and accurate positions of each buried facility. Inaccurate records can result in safety risks to site workers, design changes and costly delays.


Typical objectives of a geophysical SUE project include:

  • Locate subsurface utilities
  • Expose and record precise vertical and horizontal location as well as size of utility in question
  • Digitizing information for use in CADD or GIS system
  • Update record of installed utilities that will aid in project's safety, design, engineering, and construction


Key benefits of using FPM for your SUE project in:

  • Cost Effective, Non-Destructive and Non-Invasive approach
  • Metallic and non-metallic pipelines can be located and mapped
  • Maximum environmental safety and protection to site workers
  • Accurate, permanent record of lateral and sometimes vertical utility locations (Hardcopy and/or CAD/GIS)
  • Fewer utility relocations and reduced utility conflicts
  • Fewer contractor delays due to fewer claims
  • Reduced inconvenience to utility customers due to loss of service or damage


The primary objectives of utility mapping and clearance work are to safeguard personnel doing intrusive work and to prevent damages to the customer's underground utilities. We achieve this by utilizing the latest in geophysical technology as well as integrating digital techniques such as GPS and GIS.


Typical surface methods utilized by FPM for SUE projects:

  • Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR)
  • Electromagnetic (EM) Utility Locators
  • Time and frequency-domain EM systems