Global Valve and Controls
29Mar/17Off

Fracking in the Permian Basin

Fracking in the Permian Basin

 

The Permian Basin is found in a large part of West Texas as well as Southeast of New Mexico. It was named Permian because it has one of the worlds thickest deposits of rocks Permian geologic period. The Permian Basin is actually composed of three basins which include the Midland Basin, Delaware Basin and the Marfa Basin. Many people do not know but the Permian Basin is the largest petroleum producing basins in America. To get an idea of how large this basin really is, currently, nearly 2 million barrels of oil a day are being pumped from the basin, which still contains an estimated 43 billion barrels of oil and 18 trillion cu ft. of gas.

Companies working in the Permian face two challenges when it comes to water: getting enough water for fracking and getting rid of underground water released by fracking. Water injection is part of the fracking process and currently there are disputes on what needs to be done with the wastewater. Water is beneficial to fracking, by sending a mixture of water, sand and certain additives into a deep-rock formation at high pressure. Soon after the fracturing occurs, water returns to the surface as “flowback” or wastewater. 

What they used to do what inject the water back into the ground, but there are studies that show this has actually been linked to earthquakes. Oklahoma is a prime example, because of this Oklahoma has limited wastewater injections.

Water poses problems for the energy industry in the Permian

 

20Mar/17Off

The oil and gas sector is threatened by cyber attacks

Technology is growing fast and more threats toward oil and gas companies are being discovered. While the industry of cyber security grows, there are many people who are wondering if whether new technology is what is really needed. It is hard to say exactly how many threats companies face as many companies are not required to report it. In fact, the Power, Chemical and Nuclear industries must obey the cybersecurity laws but when it comes to the Oil and Gas sector, federal law does not impose such standards. Companies such as Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66 and even Kinder Morgan are a few of the largest oil and gas companies who get cyber threats every day.

“Charles McConnell, at Rice University's Energy and Environment Initiative, said oil companies tend to rush to deploy new computer technologies that make operations more productive, but only afterward considering ways to defuse online threats.”

The problem is that the equipment that is being used currently was signed 10 years ago and the equipment was designed decades ago without security features. Efforts over the years to link computer networks to devices that monitor pressure or control valves have exposed operations to online threats. There are as many as thousands of sensors and controls in oil and gas facilities that reman open and vulnerable to cyber attacks.

There are steps that are put in place to help ward off hackers such as the Coast guard who has a joint partnership with the Houston police. The coast guards patrol the waters for unprotected wireless signals that hackers may use to access the facilities. The Gulf of Mexico has one of the largest concentrations of pipelines, refineries and chemical plants in the country that are being attacked on a daily basis.

 

http://www.voanews.com/a/hackers-drawn-to-energy-sectors-lack-of-sensors-controls/3751090.html

13Mar/17Off

A world without drilling

Are we ready to stop drilling?

What would happen if all the drilling for oil and gas stopped all over the world? Is that even possible? It is very hard to imagine as we have well over 700,000 oil wells! I found this fascinating as there is already a plan put in place in the UK, called NEST or National Employment Savings Trust, recently announced it was moving 10 percent of its investments toward firms that work to reduce climate change and create more environmentally-friendly methods of energy use. NEST will be focusing more on renewable energy such as solar and wind and less on extracting energy which is a sign of climate change. It sounds a bit dramatic to stop all the drilling all of a sudden but further research shows there might be something that both sides can agree on.

The method is to find a plan which is not as expensive and reduces pollution. Washington State University researchers recently published findings indicating they have found a better method of conducting a significant catalytic reaction frequently used in the oil and gas industries. If it’s widely adopted, the energy savings and reduced pollutants could be impressive. Their method is to place a small amount of carbon within the catalyst that breaks apart the carbon and hydrogen in methane. The increased amount causes the creation of nickel carbide. One of the researchers at WSU also noted that the current process is very wasteful and that converting methane without the burn that produces gas would benefit energy providers and the environment. A win-win for both sides!

It is very hard to tell if the new process will affect the global market and how it will affect as businesses have not yet started using this new method of extracting oil.

To read more information about this new method, please visit this website: http://www.theenergycollective.com/mnichols/2400104/new-research-help-save-oil-gas-money-environment

Valves such as our GVC BV6000 is a an example of a valve that can be used in oil wells for drilling. http://gvcintl.com/products_threaded_and_socket_weld_valves.html

 

 

11Mar/17Off

Pipeline needed in Alaska for billions of oil

The last time I saw an article online about a large oil discovery was not very recent. In fact, the last time that a major oil find was made was actually in 2009 in Venezuela. Recently, there has been a huge onshore oil discovery in Alaska! "Spanish oil company Repsol said Thursday that it discovered 1.2 billion barrels of oil in Alaska." It has been thirty years since there has been a large find such as this. The oil discovery was made near the village of Nuiqsut in North Slope. The oil find in Venezuela was large but this is by far the largest. According to the company who found the oil, production is scheduled to start as late as 2021 and they will be extracting as much as 120,000 barrels of oil per day. The company Repsol partnered with Armstrong Oil is definitely lucky to have found such a large amount of oil, back in 2001, they discovered two other areas in Alaska filled with oil but since sold the areas. The company quoted "Alaska has significant infrastructure which allows new resources to be developed more efficiently."

This news can definitely bring some relief from when the oil prices went down even though they are slowly recovering. For example, last year there was a freeze in the hiring process and all out of state travel was ceased. I am hoping this news will turn things around especially in Alaska. Interesting enough, the company also said they are very surprised a find this large discovery as the oil basin was often called, "an aging basin", also known to be on its last legs.  Alaska Governor Bill Walker said in a statement. "We must all pull together to fill an oil pipeline that's three-quarters empty."

http://www.businessinsider.com/repsol-onshore-oil-discovery-alaska-2017-3