Hydraulic Completion Rig | VideoJennifer Joas | 10/28/2012
When you drive down the highways in western North Dakota, oil rigs are an everyday site. But this one is drawing some extra attention because of its unique design.
"Other people from other oil field companies want to come in and just look at it because they`ve never seen anything like it. So you do. You get a lot of people that come by that are interested and want to know what it does and how it works," said RT Energy Tool Pusher Nic Scoughton.
The rig is all hydraulic. It`s new to the Bakken, and its the only one like it in the world. This revolutionary rig drills 10,000 feet underground. First there`s a rig across the street that drills and fractures the well. Then this rig goes into the ground and drills out the plugs so oil can start flowing.
But in addition to being a completion rig, this massive piece of machinery can walk from one well to the next on the same drilling pad. It`s also safer to operate and requires a smaller work crew.
"The safety features on it are just phenomenal. The 16 years I`ve been doing it, it`s by far the safest rig that I`ve ever seen," said Rig Manager Bryce Dunleavy.
This rig stands out because it doesn`t have any cables at the top, it`s run by an operator using joy sticks and valve handles, and it also has built in slips so that tubing can`t blow out of the hole.
"I think once they figure out what oil is going to do here in the next few months, I think they`re going to build a lot more like it. It wouldn`t make any sense not to," Dunleaby said.
Because of the results this hydraulic rig has already achieved in the Bakken, Dunleaby thinks you`ll be seeing a lot more of them in the future.
If you happen to see this one, make sure you catch a glimpse of it, because in a couple of weeks this rig could be moved to another location.
This is just one of the technologies being used in the Bakken. Tune in tomorrow for the Evening and Night reports to see other pilot programs that could advance oil exploration in the Bakken.