NGSA adopts 3D technology to tackle building collapse

By Oscarline Onwuemenyi

The Nigerian Geological Survey Agency (NGSA) has announced moves to acquire the 3 Dimensional, 3D, Geological Modeling to tackle the incidences of collapsing buildings as well undertake other geological events in the country.

The Director General of the Agency, Prof. Siyan Malomo, who spoke with journalists in at the background of an interactive session with experts in the profession, noted that the advanced geological model would be used to undertake sighting of deeper levels which the previous model 2D cannot access.

He noted that the agency has gone into consultation with experts from the nation’s high institutions including Ahmadu Bello University, , University of , University of , University of Ilorin and four other varsities on the practicalities of the new geological model in the country.

According to Malomo, the frequent incidence of building collapse in the country is not only due to the outer level of the building as underneath the foundation also counts a lot, adding that a knowledge of the volume of water in a particular area matters to the building.

He said, “The 3D modeling technology is ten times better than 2D. It would definitely help with the frequent cases of building collapses across major cities in the country.

“With 2D, you can only look at the surface but you need a 3D picture to look at the surface and depth as well. A lot that is happening to foundation is in depth not on the surface alone. So 3D makes us to understand what goes on beyond the depth.”

The Director General also raised alarm over the indiscriminate sinking of boreholes in the country, adding that a concentration of too many boreholes in a particular area could culminate in the depletion of water resources in that area.

According to him, there is an urgent need to mandate an agency to check the reflection of volume of water that is drawn for boreholes in as it is practiced in the .

He stated that, “There is need to control the indiscriminate sinking of boreholes because, for instance, if you sink so many boreholes in a place, you pump water to the extent that there is no more water for you to drink.

“So if you sink many boreholes in a small area with limited water reserves, you may not have enough for the entire people in that area.

“The solution is that we control the sinking of boreholes. We can also try to measure the amount of water that is pumped from an area and what level you can pump in an area because there is a limit; the maximum you can pump from an area. If it is beyond that level you have ground water draw-down.

“All we are seeking is not just the control of sinking of boreholes. In countries like the United Kingdom, if you drill a borehole, you put a survey somewhere; we don’t have any reflection in that line. We don’t have a reflection at all. Also, when you sink a borehole, the amount of water you pump out must give information to somebody so that they will know if that area is going to deplete quickly or not. So we need to improve the act of this agency or another agency to do that work.”

Also speaking at the session, the Head of Science, Land Use, Planning and Development of the British Survey Agency (BSA), Dr. Helen Reeves, explained that 3D Geological modeling captures the geologist’s visions, concept and understanding underlying geological processes.

She attested to the fact that has good geological mapping, which can be useful to the building industry while prospecting for locations.

Reeves said, “I think it is to ensure you have good geological planning. You have good geological maps in Nigeria and you can use them to help and you can make sure that you have the right information for sustainable development for the future.”

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