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The BRGM Group

Iris Instruments: Towards a resumption of mining exploration


The health crisis and all its consequences remained a central concern for IRIS Instruments in 2021 and for its employees and customers. Their cohesion and professionalism enabled our teams once again to rise to the occasion to face this second atypical year.

Due to successive country restrictions, travel to scientific conferences, trade fairs and customer visits remained limited. However, digital communication tools were used to ensure that the bond with scientific, commercial and customer partners was not lost.

Financially, the company is performing well, driven equally by the mineral prospection, groundwater exploration and environmental markets. 

CCI Consult uses a SYSCAL PRO resistivity meter to monitor the subsurface of railway tracks in France. © IRIS Instruments

CCI Consult uses a SYSCAL PRO resistivity meter to monitor the subsurface of railway tracks in France. © IRIS Instruments


The commercial success of compact resistivity meters (SYSCAL), designed for monitoring the first 250 m of the subsurface, is intensifying with uses that extend beyond traditional applications such as hydrogeology, monitoring of natural and anthropic risks, archaeology, etc. Consequently, these leading-edge electrical-imaging instruments, with their proven reliability, are now routinely used in the field of civil engineering.

Global mining exploration budgets increased significantly in 2021, driven by a growing demand for base metals and for critical metals related to energy transitions (transport and energy). IRIS Instruments was able to capitalise on this momentum with increased sales of resistivity and induced polarisation, deep-exploration systems for investigating beyond the first 250 metres. Although it is too early to predict, this enthusiasm for deep exploration is likely to be sustained.

IRIS Instruments is ready to meet the demand for deep mining prospection with the publication of its patent EP3572846A1 "High Power Transformer and Transmitter for Geophysical Measurements" and its range of instruments  that are patented in the USA, Canada and Australia. With its 6kW of power, this transmitter will become an essential tool for deep monitoring, alongside FullWavers and more traditional receivers such as ELRECs.

Private sector equipment sales increased in 2021, indicating a significant economic recovery despite the difficulties operators still face in moving from one theatre to another.

IRIS Instruments continues its research and development effort in order to offer its customers solutions that meet their challenges. The company benefits from support under the French government’s recovery plan in the context of its joint laboratory with the CEA/IRFU. Its success in responding to calls for projects also provides opportunities for high-quality collaborative research with BRGM and other scientific partners. This investment guarantees the performance of future instruments that will be offered to tomorrow's customers.

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CEO: Catherine Truffert
Turnover: €5.9M
SAGEOS holding: 51%
OYO holding: 49%
Staff: 26 employees

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Catherine Truffert Présidente d'IRIS Instruments
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CEO, Iris Instruments