Beginning with an introduction to oil well drilling, the book contains important topics like the exploration techniques used in the search for oil, well drilling equipment, routine drilling operations, well completion procedures, drilling bits, formation evaluation techniques and other well problems like well kicks and blow outs. A brief on the various chapters is given below.
Chapter 1 – Introduction
Oil and gas have been found in different locations irrespective of geographical boundaries. This chapter also has a brief introduction to various aspects like the owner of the well and the preliminary process like rig move required for starting the drilling of an oil well. It also deals with an introduction to the functions of various professionals on a rig site and the teamwork that goes into drilling an oil well efficiently.
Chapter 2 – Exploration
Petroleum occurs in nature in stratified rocks called sedimentary rocks. In this chapter, various topics pertaining to the ever changing nature of the earth, especially the movement of the earth’s surface (plate motion) which in turn leads to the formation of structural features like folds, faults etc., are dealt with. These structures are fundamental to the formation and accumulation of commercial petroleum deposits. The different exploration techniques, which are used to identify the location of oil accumulations, are also described in simple language in this chapter.
Chapter 3 – Drilling Equipment
The different types of rigs used for drilling and the main components of a rig are described in detail in this chapter. Drilling rig equipment is usually categorized into four broad functional operating systems such as the hoisting, rotary, circulating and the well control systems. These systems perform their respective operations with the help of the power supplied to them by the engines. The rig equipment is covered in detail in this chapter
Chapter 4 – Drilling Operations
In this chapter, the different operations that are carried out on a drilling rig to successfully drill an oil well are elucidated. Besides the job of drilling ahead, ancillary operations of tripping, making connections landing the casing and cementation of the casing are also equally important. In addition to normal drilling operations, specialized operations like coring enable the geologist to study in detail the formations being drilled and measure properties like porosity and permeability. New hi-tech drilling practices like slim hole or directional drilling and use of coiled tubing which help to decrease the cost of drilling are also covered in brief.
Chapter 5 – Drilling Fluids
This chapter deals with drilling fluids used on a drilling rig. The different kinds of fluids, their functions and drilling hydraulics are covered in detail in this chapter. Drilling hydraulics are very important parameters used to calculate the pressure draw-down in the system.
Chapter 6 – Drilling Bits
A bit is the most important component of a drill string, therefore its selection is important and dependent on the type of formation it has to drill. Depending on these factors the bit life and the meters which can be drilled with the bit can be estimated. This chapter has a very detailed description of the different types of bits used on a drilling rig. Bit geometry and bit classification are also dealt with here.
Chapter 7 – Hydrocarbons
The chapter on hydrocarbons starts with a description of the basic structure of a hydrocarbon and how these compounds have been further divided into saturated and unsaturated hydrocarbons depending on the valency of the carbon atom. The physical properties of oil, the composition of natural gas and the basis of classification for the crude are also covered in this chapter.
Chapter 8 – Formation Evaluation
This chapter covers the different formation evaluation procedures in use today. This chapter details the use of different techniques like electrical logging, mud logging, coring, Drill stem test and a Repeat formation test. These techniques reveal the presence of any oil or gas in the formations being drilled and provide information regarding the formation permeability and production rate.
Chapter 09 – Well Problems
During the drilling of ail well, numerous problems may be encountered. This chapter describes the different problems like mud loss, caving, stuck pipe, well kicks etc.
Chapter 10 – Well Completion
The process of bringing an oil well to productive status and producing the fluids from the reservoir is termed as well completion. This chapter describes in brief the various well completion methods used in oil wells.