In nearly two years, the ram-type blowout preventer (BOP) will turn 100 years old. Its birth has greatly improved rig safety and oil control processing in the oilfield industry. Without the innovation of blow out preventers, drilling for oil could have hazardous consequences.
The first ram-type BOP was invented in 1922 by James Smither Abercrombie and Harry S. Cameron in Humble, TX. After many other engineers had failed, the oilman and machinist were able to design a blowout preventer that could seal the wellbore and prevent leaks. Like many innovations in oilfield history, the arrival of the ram-type BOP led to greater efficiency and overall safety.
Oilfield Operation Before 1922
When Abercrombie and Cameron first invented the blowout preventer, there had been any historical accounts of dangerous and wasteful oil gushers. One of the most famous blowouts occurred at Spindletop Hill near Beaumont, TX. Without a blowout preventer to restrict the flow during oil drilling, a six-inch stream of oil and gas erupted nearly 100 feet into the air. It reportedly took nine days and 500,000 barrels of oil before a shut-off valve could be installed to stop the flow.
That being said, the early 1900s had its share of unpredicted oil blowouts, and the engineers knew a solution had to be found. When Ram BOP inventors, Abercrombie and Cameron formulated a plan in 1922, the future of petroleum drilling was changed drastically.
Key Design Features
When the first ram-type BOP was designed, the engineers focused on maintaining the pressure control of the drill pipes. By using a small number of parts, the ram preventers were built to be installed on a range of pipe diameters. Typically, a ram blowout preventer consists of two halves of a cover for the well that is being sealed. The hydraulic cylinders force the two halves of the cover together to seal the wellbore.
Pro Tip: For fast and reliable application, choose the Series 700 Ram-type BOP to maintain the working pressure of the wellbores on your oil rigs.
The Evolution of Ram BOPs
Since 1922, the design of the ram blowout preventer has been improved and redesigned. Today, Ram BOPs now include manual locking screws, hydraulic locking crevices, and large bore shearing bonnets. The simple, compact design of this preventer makes it a popular choice for BOP stacks to ensure pressure control even in abnormal situations.
Reliable Oilfield Equipment
In the oilfield, it’s important to maintain a high level of quality for your equipment. Our ram-type BOPs feature a strong, durable design to ensure your wellhead will stay completely sealed. With the ability to withstand high pressures without leakage, our ram BOPs will ensure your oil rig is able to work safely and efficiently.
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