Drilling is the key performance indicator of any exploration activity. In AMD, Drilling activities are coordinated by Departmental and Contract Drilling Groups. AMD initiated drilling operations on contract in 1951, at Jaduguda, Jharkhand (then Bihar state). Subsequently, AMD procured four Cralius make core drilling rigs in 1954 and commenced departmental drilling. In order to sustain the diversified exploration for atomic minerals in several geological domains of the country, AMD acquired additional 14 drilling units of Cralius, Joy and Longyear makes by 1961. Concomitant with the discovery of several promising uranium mineralised sectors across the country, AMD enhanced its drilling capacity and during the early nineties 60 drilling rigs of various make were in operation, deployed in several parts of India. During 2009-10, for the first time, AMD procured 10 state-of-the-art truck/crawler mounted hydrostatic rigs to enhance the drilling productivity. AMD presently has a fleet of 35 drilling rigs (17Mechanical and 17Hydrostatic and 1DTH – non-core) which are in operation across the country in seven Regions. Over the years, AMD has developed the capacity ofdrilling boreholes upto 1,200m depth. Since inception, AMD has carried out 2,413.98 km of departmental drilling (as on December, 2020).
In addition to the Departmental drilling, AMD carries out a large quantum of drilling on contract (outsourcing) also, which includes coring, non-coring and ‘sonic’ drilling. The contract drilling work is awarded based on competitive bidding. Since inception, AMD has carried out 1,590.48 km of contract drilling (as on December, 2020).