Tag Archives: Horizontal drilling techniques

Swan Energy Explains Modern Horizontal Drilling Techniques

At Swan Energy we often talk about pools of oil, but in fact oil exists between the grains of porous rock broken up by faults. With the advancement of horizontal drilling combined with hydraulic fracturing the industry is able to be much more effective at extracting the oil from targeted rock formation.

Horizontal drilling starts off with a vertical well bore. When the bore gets near the target formation the drilling string then makes a 90-degree turn so that the well bore runs parallel to the target formation. Because of the flexibility in the drilling pipe at these lengths the drill string can be snaked through the target formation.

To learn more about horizontal drilling and fracturing go to:

In the Wattenberg field the average horizontal well is 7,000 feet deep and then runs 4,000 feet horizontally according to Swan Energy.

These horizontal wells have a significant advantage over vertical wells. In some cases a 4,000 foot horizontal well bore can have as many as 16 perforations  resulting in extracting more oil in a shorter timespan throughout the target formation.

The modern technique of combining fracturing with horizontal drilling has opened up new discoveries throughout the continental United States — Eagleford, Bakken, and the recent discovery of the Wattenberg field. As with the Wattenberg, most of these hot new oil plays that we hear so much about have been known for decades.   It is only now with high oil prices and this new technology of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracking that makes these fields significant oil plays.

This kind of drilling not only opens up new oil and gas fields, but it also gives the ability to have several wells drilled from one drilling pad site location. For example, Swan Energy estimates that on 1288-acre parcel of land it may be possible to drill 32 vertical wells. One horizontal multi-well pad site with horizontal wells could effectively extract as much oil and gas from the 1288 acre of land as the 32 vertical wells. For Brandon Davis and Swan Energy this significantly reduces cost, and has much less environmental impact on the surface.

To learn more about horizontal drilling and fracturing go to:

To learn more about horizontal drilling and fracturing go to:

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Posted by on March 12, 2012 in Oil and Gas Production


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