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Do You Have Burning Questions About Directional Drilling?

Tim Graham

Directional drilling refers to a methodology employed by oil extraction and mining companies to reach mineral reserves sitting deep in the ground. In most cases, the natural deposits explored in this manner sit above the targeted reservoirs. Reaching them requires miners and engineers to vertically drill into the well below. On the other hand, directional drilling introduces a different dimension where the technicians involved drill at an angle. It allows them to explore multiple mineral reservoirs through one well, a metric that cannot be achieved by drilling vertically from the surface. 

It's understandable if you still have several questions about directional drilling at this point. Thankfully, the objective of this piece is to explore your pain points and provide the detailed answers that you need. Keep reading!

What Equipment Does the Process Need?

Directional drilling requires unique drilling equipment such as: 

  • Mud Motors – a mud motor excels at powering drilling equipment where ordinary drilling equipment will struggle. Most of them rely on a simple working principle where the drill string stops rotating at a certain depth. This allows the drilling fluid to move through the mud motor and initiate a rotary motion of the drilling bit. 
  • Drill Bits – special drilling bits come in handy to optimise performance and reduce the chances of equipment failure. 
  • Rotary steerable systems (RSS) – an RSS does two things at the same time, steering and drilling. Directional drilling that relies on a mud motor works by sliding the drill pipe forward before the drill starts moving. The RSS facilitates this while allowing the engineers to access previous inaccessible formations. 

What Happens When You Need to Make a Turn 

The formation of oil and its related minerals can be uneven at times, requiring the drilling direction to take a sudden change. Usually, this can seem impossible when you consider the mechanics involved in directional drilling. However, there are several ways of enabling a change in direction. The simplest method is jetting a high-pressure water nozzle or drilling fluid from one side of the drill. The jet creates a weak side of the formation and causes the drill bits to shift to the side with less pressure. 

How Can Engineers tell the End of the Drill?

Certainly, it is impossible for engineers to see hundreds of metres into the ground with their naked eyes. Vision is enabled through special guides developed by the engineers. These guides relay survey data back to the engineers after every ten metres to ensure that they are drilling in the right direction.  

For more information about directional drilling, contact a local company. 


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About Me
Hiring Contractors For Home Improvements

Hello! My name is Richard and this is my new blog. On this blog, I hope to pass on some useful information about how to work with contractors. I recently decided that I wanted to give my property a complete overhaul. I wanted to have a new roof installed, the interior remodelled and the driveway repaired. I asked around and I put together a great team of contractors who could all work together to get the job done. However, that isn't to say there wasn't the occasion challenge during such a big project. I learnt a lot from the experience and I am really pleased with the work that the contractors carried out.

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