Patrick Tingwell

I am pleased to record my thoughts on Dan Moye and the impact he had on my work as the Engineer for Drilling with the Snowy Mountains Authority (SMA) in the fifties. The day after joining the SMA at Alexandria in Sydney in 1952, I was transferred to the “Regions” and ended up in Tumut Pond assigned to the Drilling Section to carry out water testing of drill holes at the Tumut Pond damsite.

This lead on to the position of Diamond Drilling Engineer firstly under Claude Creelman and later Peter Berents. It was in this role that I first met Dan Moye during an inspection of the T1 Power Station site standing on the rocky bank of the fast flowing Tumut River.

Diamond drilling was an important part of the geological exploratory work and under Dan Moye’s guidance the geologists expected the maximum amount of subsurface information from the drill cores. The drillers in my team accepted the challenge of maximum core recovery with gusto and men like Paul Grech, Jim Murray and Joe Morgan set a fine example of achieving the information to satisfy Dan Moye’s high standards of geological assessment.

Dan Moye’s leadership in exploratory diamond drilling led to improvements in the design of the diamond drill bits and the development of the triple tube core barrel with the inner tube being split so it could be opened without damaging the core samples. The importance of water testing drill holes also led to the development of an hydraulic packer which provided an improved sealing arrangement at the designated depth in the drill hole. The role of the drilling equipment suppliers must be acknowledged here.

During a severe winter period, Dan Moye encouraged me to conduct a two day workshop in Island Bend for all the drillers to enhance their understanding of the importance of obtaining the best possible results from their efforts in the field. Apart from the improvements in the approach to the drilling tasks, it also instilled an excellent work ethic and a cooperative spirit between the drillers and the geologists.

Patrick Tingwell B E, FIE(Aust)