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Extended life, quicker make-up and gas tightness among key innovation areas as operators seek larger tubulars, lower costs of ownership

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In a market where operators and drilling contractors alike are analyzing every nickel and dime in their operations, drill pipe manufacturers must ensure tubular technologies are providing the required performance at an accessible cost. “What we’re doing right now is helping companies to reduce their cost of ownership,” said Guillaume Plessis, Director of Global Marketing for Grant Prideco, a National Oilwell Varco (NOV) company. “We will still see optimization of the product, but we also want to make it a very affordable possibility.”

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IEA: US leading charge in growing oil supply, but prices could still soar by 2020

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The US is leading the charge in increasing global oil production, but despite this massive contribution, world oil supplies might not meet demand after 2020 without approval of new projects “soon,” warned a new International Energy Agency report. The IEA report, “Oil 2017,” was unveiled at CERAWeek by IHS Market on 6 March in Houston. IEA Executive Director Dr Fatih Birol cited two main takeaways from the study. “We are witnessing the start of a second wave of US shale oil,” he said, cautioning, “We see significant risk of prices rising sharply starting with 2020, unless significant new projects are sanctioned.” While oil supply and demand over the next three years are “comfortable,” IEA projects that supply growth will slow significantly afterward. ...

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Fulfilling the need for speed: Drill bit designs drilling further, faster

The third iteration of Baker Hughes’ Kymera PDC roller cone hybrid drill bit has been given a sharper and more dense cutting structure to boost ROP and durability in hard carbonates and interbedded rock.

Modern drill bits have improved exponentially over the past several years, but operators continue to raise the bar in terms of expectations for more efficiency and durability. From horizontal wells in North American shales to Middle Eastern wells with 3,000- to 6,500-ft sections and even some deepwater wells using rotary steerable systems, operators now oftentimes expect to drill entire hole sections without tripping out for a new bit. “More than 60% of the sections drilled around the world today are already done with one bit, which means that the primary way to reduce customers’ drilling costs in those sections is to significantly increase ROP,” said Allen White, Product Champion at Smith Bits, a Schlumberger company.

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State bans, law suits could influence the future of hydraulic fracturing in the US

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By Kelli Ainsworth, Editorial Coordinator Hydraulic fracturing, critical to the recovery of North American drilling activities, remains under threat in the US. Several states appear poised to ban hydraulic fracturing, including California and Maryland. Further, several legislation and legal actions are ongoing, including the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) hydraulic fracturing rule that remains under appeal and a lawsuit in Oklahoma regarding fracturing and seismicity. At the same time, the general public remains very concerned about the effects of hydraulic fracturing – in terms of drinking water quality and induced seismicity, for example. Such concerns continue to drive the actions and decisions for many state agencies. “Perception affects what laws, regulations and bans go into place,” said Michael Gray, ...

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