Traditional methods of locating buried pipelines and checking coating condition are known to be slow, inaccurate and highly subjective, and cannot be used at all in many situations.


The search for a better method was initiated in the mid-1970s in collaboration with some major pipeline operators.

The use of non-contact systems, using the electrical field radiated by a buried pipeline carried by a low frequency signal, showed promise as theoretically it would enable the user to determine the rate of current loss – and therefore the coating quality and fault location – on pipelines under all surfaces. This became the basis for development of the C-SCAN System.


Early prototypes used modified two- or three-coil ‘pipe locators’, but it became clear that these could never provide the accuracy Dynalog considered necessary. Likewise it was essential that the Signal Generator output should remain absolutely constant despite variations in external conditions during a survey. A new patented multi-coil antenna assembly was developed and this, together with the advanced electronics of the Detector Unit and the computer-controlled output of the Signal Generator, formed the basis for the first production C-SCAN™ Systems in 1983.

C-SCAN Systems are now in use in nearly 40 countries around the world and are supported directly by Dynalog Electronics or through local distributors or technical agents who have been trained by Dynalog personnel, either in their own territory or on courses that the company runs at its own plants.

1983 model

As pioneers in this field, Dynalog has maintained its leadership through a policy of continuous improvement. The C-SCAN 2000 series – a complete re-design incorporating the latest developments in electronics, the results of further research, and feed-back from over 20 years of field experience – was launched in 1995.

Now complemented by the latest development, C-SCAN 2010, these instruments provide even greater sensitivity and accuracy, longer battery life, lower weight and stronger housings which can withstand extreme operating conditions.

All controls on the Detector and Signal Generator are through membrane keypads and large graphic LCDs which display information and prompt messages. Survey reports can be downloaded from the Detector Unit direct to a computer or to a printer for storage, analysis or comparison with previous surveys.  C-SCAN has the ability to display and store GPS co-ordinates through its own internal GPS unit. Dynalog firmly intends to maintain its position as world leader in this technology by continuing to introduce further technical improvements as soon as they have been tested and proved.