5 Types of Oil Drilling

As an employee or a stakeholder in the oil and gas industry, you need to understand all the types of oil drilling methods. The method to extract oil or natural gas from the earth’s crust depends on various factors, such as soil type and the site’s geographic location.

What are the common types of oil drilling?

Oil drilling involves the extraction of oil by drilling a well through the earth’s crust to reach the fossil fuel deposits. Drill bits get attached to drill pipes to penetrate the rocks. Mud gets circulated in the pipe to remove rock cuttings from the hole.

There are several types of oil drilling methods you need to know. Learn how each technique works and where it’s applicable. Click To Tweet

Here are the five common types of oil drilling techniques.

  1. Cable Drilling 
  2. Directional Drilling 
  3. Electro-Drilling 
  4. Rotary Drilling
  5. Dual-Wall Reverse-Circulation Drilling

1) Cable Drilling

Cable drilling is a manual method that attaches a hammering bit on a long cable, which gets lowered into a hole. The tools get supported above the hole by a tripod stand. As the bit and cable go forth and back, soil loosens in the hole, which gets removed. Workers remove the bit at intervals and cuttings suspended in water and pumped to the surface.

2) Directional Drilling 

In directional drilling, the drill moves along a curved path as the drill hole deepens. The technique allows oil explorers to reach unreachable oil deposits by vertical drilling. As a result, it reduces the extraction costs. Besides, miners can use this method to extract oil deposits from undersea reservoirs onshore.

3) Electro-Drilling

In this technique, electric motors drive the winches and rotary tables to extract oil from the earth’s crust, improving operations flexibility. This new oil and gas exploration technique is very effective because the electric motor provides direct power to the drill bit. It’s ideal for drilling regions with complex geological conditions.

4) Rotary Drilling

Rotary drilling uses lightweight drills to drill low-depth wells on the land, followed by rotary mobiles and floating drills of different sizes to drill exploration wells. The drill pipe used here rotates at a speed of 40-250 revolutions per minute with the drill. Rock cuttings are then removed from the hole by fluid circulating in the drill pipe.

5) Dual-Wall Reverse-Circulation Drilling

The dual-wall reverse-circulation technology works like rotary drilling. However, it uses two concentric drill pipes to establish a controlled flow. Drilling fluid gets pumped into the drill pipe through the outer swivel to flow to the bit’s bottom. The fluid then flows back upwards into the main pipe. The cuttings move upwards via the internal pipe.

Different Equipment for Different Drilling

All the types of drilling techniques work differently. As an oil rig operator or manager, you need to pick a method that works best in a specific region. That’s because the drill site’s soil type and geological conditions can influence the oil drilling method. Besides, the equipment used for every drilling method is different.

Contact us to learn about the drilling equipment for extracting oil and gas.