Airspade Investigations

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Airspade Investigations 2017-06-01T11:00:30+00:00

Airspade Investigation

Advanced Arboriculture regularly undertake Airspade projects for private, commercial and local authority clients. An Airspade is a handheld lance which directs a finely focussed jet of air at nearly twice the speed of sound into the ground. Its uses include:

Root distribution surveys

Establishing the spread and extent of a tree’s rooting system, especially where structures need to be located within a tree’s root protection area.

Root pruning

Where construction within the root protection area of a retained tree unavoidable, manual root pruning can minimise damage and reduce the likelihood of the ingress of decay compared to the inevitable fracturing, bark stripping and delamination of roots which occurs with mechanically dug trenches. It is also sometimes possible to expose and redirect roots around new structures using this technique.

Soil amelioration

An Airspade can be used to break up the structure of a compacted soil and thus enhance the rooting environment. This is particularly important where accidental damage or compaction has occurred on development sites or areas subjected to extensive pedestrian or vehicular movements close to trees such as parks or festival sites. Further soil improvements can be achieved by incorporating mature mulch into the decompacted soils.

Services installation

Where services have to be installed within a root protection area, it is often possible to use the Airspade to create a trench which allows cables or pipes to be fed extends some distance below the major roots of a tree. The non-destructive action of the airspade also minimises the potential for damage to other existing underground services which may not appear on any services survey.

Soil level restoration

Where soil or arisings have been tipped within a tree’s root protection area, the airspade can be used to carefully reduce the ground back to its original level without the risk of compaction or over-excavating which is usually associated with mechanical clearance.

All our Airspade operators are qualified competent arborists and hold CSCS (Construction Skills Certification Scheme) accreditation. Because the Airspade is fed from a compressor, we do not need direct vehicular access to the area and are only limited by the lengths of our pneumatic hoses.

Airspaded trench