Subsurface Engineering

Murphy Surveys Subsurface Engineering Division is Ireland’s largest underground investigation company, with 35 years’ experience in the industry. The division provides unique, coordinated survey packages from design inception through to construction completion, offering turnkey solutions to our clients.

Getting accurate information on the location of buried services can reduce the risk of costly utility strikes. While the direct cost of repair of damaged utilities is generally low, indirect costs such as service interruption, project delays, fines, legal costs, increased insurance premiums and reputational damage can be quite high.

The subsurface engineering division can eliminate these avoidable costs and project delays for our clients by using our technical knowledge, training, quality standards and incorporating industry best practices to accurately map buried services on your site while always putting safety first.

Murphy Surveys Subsurface Engineering
Subsurface Engineering

Non-intrusive & intrusive survey methods

We use non-intrusive & intrusive methods to

  • Inform infrastructure planning and maintenance
  • Derive geotechnical properties using surface and borehole geophysical measurements
  • Detect buried utility services and shallow voids
  • Detect buried hazards such as underground storage tanks and buried pits
  • Inform route selection for cable routes, pipelines, railways and roads
  • Map archaeological features
  • Provide 3D utility infrastructure BIM Models
  • Reduce Risk
  • Protest ground workers on construction sites
Underground Utility Surveys

Murphy Surveys are the leading underground utility surveying specialists in Ireland and the UK. Our unique and client focused approach to each project, incorporates all elements of the SCSI and PAS128 specifications to produce tailored 3D underground utility models that give piece of mind to our clients in the design or construction phase on any project.


We use use the most modern equipment, cutting edge technologies and over thirty years of experience and skill to produce cost-effective fast, efficient and accurate Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) surveys. GPR is a non-intrusive surveying technique used to locate utilities, rebar, conduits, voids and other features below the surface.

NDT Scanning Surveys

Engineering consultants & construction professionals require a reliable, non-destructive solution to assess concrete and concrete structures. Murphy Surveys’ high resolution radar systems can help locate metallic (reinforcement bars) and non-metallic (ducting) targets and concrete characteristics such as cover and thickness information within concrete columns, floor slabs and foundations. Other applications include bridge deck scanning, road pavement surveys and chimney flue surveys.

Geophysical surveys

Geophysical surveys are carried out to determine the physical properties of the ground underneath our feet. By applying electrical, magnetic, gravitational, seismic and other methods we can provide information about distinct subsurface boundaries and conditions that other methods cannot. The advantage of a geophysical survey is that it enables information to be obtained for large volumes of ground that cannot be investigated by direct methods because of the costs involved.

Site Verification Services

The most accurate underground survey solution involves coupling an underground utility surveys with a site verification survey. This may be critical at the design stage of a construction project where high-value assets are required to located to the highest level of accuracy. With this combined approach, utility surveys currently undertaken by Murphy Surveys can be verified on site using slit trenching or vacuum excavation procedures, thus reducing the element of risk.

Pipeline Surveys

Pipeline surveys include project control networks, topographical surveys for pipeline corridors, topographical surveys for AGI installations with GIS output, pipe detection for existing pipelines, proximity surveys, setting out for centrelines, ground profile, profiling for hydrostatic testing, welding isometrics, trench monitoring field manuals and schedules, volume calculations reinstatement surveys, surveying of high pressure steel gas mains and surveying of fibre optic & cable ducting.

As Built Surveys

As-Built Surveys

As-Built Surveys are compiled to show the actual condition of completed projects as they exist and are usually carried out at the completion of a project. In addition, they can be carried out on existing sites to consolidate the design and minimise delays during fabrication and construction.

Desktop Study

Desktop Utility Studies

Before carrying out any kind of ground excavation or site work, it is crucial to know where the underground utilities within the site area are located; the most inexpensive and hassle-free way to gain this information is by requesting a desktop utility survey. Murphy Surveys will collate all know utility records from the utility service providers within the proposed survey area.

Bedrock Survey

Bedrock Profiling

GPR is often applied to bedrock profiling studies for facilities designs, rail and road rights-of-way, airport designs, and other civil infrastructure projects. GPR’s suitability is limited to specific environments, and unlike seismic surveying, GPR does not provide bulk material properties (e.g. dynamic moduli and rippability). However, GPR can provide a rapid and accurate view of the bedrock topography over rugged terrain, and a fraction of the cost of other geophysical methods.


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