Posts Tagged ‘Stratum’
The advantages of fracking are not always very obvious to the American Consumer because of all the misinformation that is being presented by uninformed parties. The fact is that in the Marcellus shale rock basin, the need for hydrofracking is a requirement to extract the trapped natural gas and oil from beneath the ground.
The shale rock layer deposited in this region of the country is situated between 2000 and 9000 feet deep, in most instances. This type of rock has capillaries where the natural gas and oil are currently trapped. To break open these capillaries, the process of hydrofracking is performed by drilling a shaft down to this area below ground.
The reason this works is because of the soft nature of the shale rock and the ease at which it can be fractured. The fracturing process is done by applying water pressure to the rock. To keep the newly formed factures open, there is frac sand present in the water during the hydrofracking process. These particles keep the newly formed fractures open so the natural gas and oil can flow to the surface and be collected for the domestic energy market.
The pressure being applied at the surface area of the well bore is just enough to fracture the shale rock. Other rock layers that are more dense like granite, are not affected by the hydrofracking process. Because of this fact, only the shale rock layer is affected by the water pressure being applied.
Near the top of the well bore is compacted soil that may become affected by the hydrofracking process. To minimize the effects in this region of the ground, the well bore is now being lined so all the pressure is directed downwards. This “lining” process involves two concrete jackets that are formed around the well bore way down past the water table.
With the introduction of horizontal drilling techniques a few years ago, the surface area of the shale rock being exposed to the hydrofracking process has dramatically increased. This allows for a greater amount of trapped oil and natural gas to be extracted from each well in the Marcellus shale rock basin.
With this new technology being combined with the hydrofracking process, more natural gas and oil can be recovered from fewer wells. This reduces the cost of energy exploration in the region which can then be passed down to the American consumer.
Of all the leading advantages of fracking, the two that matters most to the American public is the lower prices for energy and a reduction in the number of wells needed to provide this necessary energy reserve.
The numbers of horizontal fracking advantages are many that are being applied to the Marcellus shale basin area. This has helped considerable in the amount of natural gas and oil that can be more easily extracted from this reservoir of trapped energy.
The number one leading advantage of fracking comes from the drilling of a horizontal shaft after the vertical shaft has attained the appropriate depth in the shale rock formation is the amount of surface area that is exposed. This increased surface area in the shale rock layer allows for more of the fracking slurry to be used in each well that is drilled.
With this increase in the area of the shale rock that is exposed allows for more of the shale rock to become more easily fractured when the pressure is applied to the well. This will permit more of the trapped natural gas and oil to easily flow out of the shale rock layer and allow it to be collected at the surface for use by the American consumer.
The second greatest advantage to horizontal fracking in the Marcellus shale rock region is the reduction in the number of wells that will have to be drilled in order to recover the natural gas and oil from this energy rich rack layer. The hydrofracking process can only fracture so much of the area at a time. By using the horizontal drilling process to expose a greater amount of the shale rock layer to the pressure being applied by the fracking slurry, a greater amount of the area can be exposed. This will then require fewer wells to be drilled to recover the same amount of natural gas and oil that would vertical drilling has permitted in the past.
This reduction in the number of wells needing to be drilled disturbs less surface area in the Marcellus shale rock basin. Because of this less land needs to be purchased, fewer raw materials are needed to recover the trapped energy and a reduction in the amount of waste water from the hydrofracturing process is created.
All of these advantages of using horizontal drilling for the recovery of the trapped natural gas and oil in the Marcellus region allows for the energy to be delivered to the domestic market place at a lower cost than before this technology was developed.
This video animation of the horizontal drilling process is the best one that we have ever seen. The description of the process is very easy to understand and shows how the well bore casings are totally enclosed with concrete.
Discover EQT’s horizontal drilling process through an animation of a sample well in the Marcellus Shale region.We recommend that you watch it.
The horizontal fracking advantages can all be contributed to the continuing development by the energy companies in how to get the greatest amount of energy out of the ground with the smallest amount of effort.
Natural Gas Fracking
The term natural gas fracking is about the process for the release of trapped natural gas from a rock layer in the earth. The fracking procedure that can be used for natural gas can be either hydrofracking or propane fracking.
The reason a fracking process might need to be used to help extract natural gas is because it may be trapped in a rock layer. This is a common predicament with a shale rock deposit that has trapped natural gas in the pores of the rock. The largest deposit of this kind in America is the Marcellus shale rock deposit in the northeastern portion of America.
A portion of this shale rock layer is near the surface, but a majority of it is between 2,000 and 9,000 feet below it. This is the target deposits for the fracking process to occur. These targeted areas are well below the aquifers in the area and can have the energy reserves recovered without any collateral damage to them.
Of the two different types of fracking process, each one has advantages and disadvantages as compared to each other. The hydrofracking process uses water. The plentiful supply and ease of transporting this raw material makes the cost of acquiring it less than the propane in a gel form. It is also less dangerous than the propane gel.
The propane gel is more expensive, but is comparatively effective in the fracturing of the shale rock layers. The two leading advantages of using this gel include the time that is required to recover the propane. This time frame is only 48 hours in most instances. The hydrofracking process requires a time frame of 7 to 14 days to recover the water slurry before the well can being the process of recovering natural gas for the market place.
Another advantage for the use of the propane gel for the preferred fracking process is what becomes of the fracking slurry when has completed its job. The propane is collected in a tank that will also contain some natural gas that can be recovered at a later date.
The hydrofracking slurry has to be channeled to a waste pond near the well bore. In this pond the water and frac sand does separate but the water will still contain a small amount of contaminants. This has to be treated at a later date.
There are options when deciding which process is used for the natural gas fracking in the Marcellus shale rock deposit region of the country. Regardless of which one is chosen, both processes line the well bore so the aquifer layer along with other layers in the ground are isolated from the pressure and the slurry of the fracking process.
Marcellus Shale Gas Fracking
The Marcellus Shale Gas Fracking process is necessary so this energy reservoir can be recovered for the American consumer to use. This is due to the natural gas being trapped in the pores of the shale rock below the surface.
The Marcellus shale rock energy deposit has been known for over 100 years. The reason the natural gas and oil have not been recovered before now is because the technology to make the extraction economically feasible has not been available until lately.
Shale Gas Fracking with Horizontal Drilling
The development of both horizontal drilling and an improved hydrofracking processes have made the extraction of natural gas and oil reserves can now be done in an economical manner. The horizontal drilling is now possible because of the flexible natural of the new style of drilling apparatus. This allows for the well to be drilled down to the shale rock layer in a vertical manner.
Once the well bore is at the shale rock layer, the drilling angle is moved to being horizontally. This allows for a greater area of the shale rock layer to be exposed to the well bore. Because of this fact, the hydrofracking process can then penetrate an increased area in the shale rock layer which allows for more of the fracking slurry to be pumped into the well bore.
With an increased in the amount of frac sand in the slurry mixture because a larger amount can be pumped into the well bore since it is larger, a greater amount of natural gas and oil can then be released with each hydrofracking procedure.
With this new combination in the recovery of natural gas and oil recover by the energy companies has made it possible to reduce the number of wells that will need to be drilled at the surface in the Marcellus shale rock basin.
Marcellus Region Shale Gas Fracking
With fewer wells needing to be drilled for the recovery of the natural gas and oil that is trapped in the Marcellus region, the cost of recovering this trapped energy is significantly reduced. This allows for a greater amount of natural gas and oil to be available to the American consumer at a lower cost. This is one of the contributions the recovery of the natural gas in the Marcellus region has a positive impact on the US economy.
The Marcellus shale gas fracking is just one of the many ways the energy companies are providing the every increased supply of natural gas and oil that the American public are demanding.
How do basic oil and gas operations work? Companies looking for oil and natural gas use a drilling rig to drill their oil well or natural gas well. This animation reviews the various steps in oil and natural gas recovery, from drilling to completion….
The need for Natural Gas Fracking in the Marcellus Shale Rock region cannot be understated. Without the shale rock being crushed or cracked, the natural gas reserves cannot be released and then harvested at the surface by the energy industry.
All known easy to reach reserves of natural gas and oil reserves have already been found and are being tapped to supply the demands of consumers and industry. Unfortunately the demand for this energy is greater than what these reserves have to offer.
The Marcellus Shale rock deposit was formed over 400 million years ago. It was not discovered until about 1839 when James Hall named it for the town in New York were it broke thru the surface. Since that time, the trapped oil and natural gas reserves have been left alone while the easier to obtain reserves were exploited for consumption by consumer and industry alike.
The means to extract the reserves for the Marcellus shale rock layer has been in use for over 100 years. Because of the added expense of drilling horizontally and then hydrofracking the well, the reserves have been left untouched until lately.
The harvesting of the Marcellus shale rock region’s reserves has occurred because the need for an increase in sources from which natural gas and oil can be extracted from is in an increasing demand. Another contributing factor is that the easy to harvest reserves of natural gas and oil hare no longer producing enough to meet the worlds and America’s needs.
The process of hydrofracking to break up the shale rock layers of the Marcellus shale region involves a slurry mixture of water and sand. This constitutes 99.5% to 99.95% of the slurry. The remaining chemicals are added to aid in the break up and dissolving of the rock layers to make extraction of the energy reserves easier. These extra chemicals are mainly VOCs and acids.
This slurry is pumped into the bore head of the well under extreme pressure to break apart the shale rock so the trapped energy reserves it holds can be collected at the surface. Without this hydrofracking process, the trapped natural gas and oil would remain unattainable for use by consumer and industry.
Unless new and easier to obtain natural gas and oil reserves are found, which is not expected, or the demand for this energy is decreased, the process of natural gas fracking is necessary to meet the demands of the modern economy of America. The alternative is higher prices with a diminishing supply of natural gas for all.
Marcellus Shale Fracking will be in the news for a long time to come as various state and local governments work out the safest and best methods to perform this type of drilling.
- Panel urges steps to reduce shale-drilling risks (philly.com)
- Gov’t panel: Fracking chemicals should be revealed (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- Marcellus Shale Fracking (transloading.org)
Author: things on shelves.
The alternatives to hydrofracking are very limited because of the specific task it performs to help extract the necessary energy that is constantly being demanded by the American consumer. The one alternative that has less of an environmental impact while still performing the same function is called propane fracking.
Propane fracking uses a liquid propane gel along with other items such as frac sand that are pumped into the shale oil rock wells under extreme pressure. This pressure is used to break up the shale rock layer and allow the trapped oil and gas to be released in a recoverable way.
The major advantage of using this new fracking method over the hydrofracking method, there is no water used. Because of this, there is no waste water stream being produced by the process. With no waste water stream, the cleanup after the fracking process is easier to complete.
Another reason for using the propane fracking process over hydrofracking is the speed in which the well can be brought back into production. In most cases after the hydrofracking procedure is completed, the water is channeled out of the well for up to a week. This water is then collected and placed in a pond on the premises of the well for treatment and or disposal at a later date.
The propane fracking process has to recover the liquefied gel propane, but the time and waste products are very different. The propane is placed in the well as a gel, but after the pressure is exerted on the gel, it changes state to a gas. This gas is then allowed to escape leaving behind the frac sand to keep the newly formed fissures open.
As this frac gas escapes from the bore head of the well, it is trapped just like the natural gas is collected. This is then kept and recycled at a later date. This process only takes up to 48 hours before the well can be back in production of recovering the energy reserve that had been previously trapped below ground.
With the present state of technology and the increasing demand for energy from the American public and the world, there is no other practical alternative to hydrofracking.
For those opponents to the fracking process, the alternatives are very simple. Either stop using energy, allow fracking to continue or rely even more on foreign energy imports to help sustain the economy. This is due to the fact that the only other alternatives to hydrofracking would involve strip mining to recover the energy reserve. That would do even more environmental damage that what is suspected of hydrofracking.