Introducing the SlotDrill™
The environmentally friendly alternative to Hydraulic Fracturing
Power Point Presentation
More than half the Oil and Gas produced in the US now comes from fracing wells. This hydraulic rock cracking technique allows companies to tap the low permeability source rock containing trillions of barrels of oil. This “source “rock” is where the oil forms but it is slow to flow into a well. Fracing opens up cracks with net surface area the size of a football field so that oil can flow to the well rapidly.
The Good News
Baring political meddling, we no longer have to be hostage to oil supplied from the middle east and we can be 100% self sufficient for hundreds of years.
The Bad News
There are still some environmental concerns about widespread use of this method for air emissions, water resources, and safety of nearby water wells. Fracing requires huge resources of water and equipment and environmental concerns have even banned it in some areas. Also there are vast areas of oil bearing strata where fracing does not work as well. However, no other commercial process can extract the oil from these vast low permeability rock layers deep in the earth. So do we have to choose between abundant energy and clean water?….Maybe not!
SlotDrill™ is an innovative drilling method that can create huge planar drainage galleries connected to a horizontally drilled well without the high pressure injection used in hydraulic fracturing. These drainage galleries, called “slots” work just like fractures to expose a huge surface area of the source rock to the well. Since they are formed mechanically instead of by just by pressure, we control where and how far they extend. We can make them in any orientation and stack multiple slots side by side.
The SlotDrill™ concept was invented in response to a government/Industry solicitation to come up with a more environmentally friendly way to access even more of the vast oil and gas reserves trapped in the shale formations of the United States. The SlotDrill™ concept appears to be significantly cheaper than hydraulic fracturing and can also be scaled down for use in water wells, environmental cleanup and geothermal energy projects. SlotDrill™ may be especially good for small producers that can not afford giant frac jobs or who have complex geological reservoirs. The developer is a long time designer of downhole oil well tools and is actively seeking industry partners and licensees to commercialize the method. Exclusive patent rights are still available.
The method requires a hole to be directionally drilled down to the producing formation (source rock) and then follow a curved path through that formation before returning to the surface. The SlotDrill™ tool string is inserted into the well and reciprocated by the drill rig on one end and a large crane on the exit end. Mechanical energy is transmitted by the thick abrasive cable to perform the cutting of the slot. Drilling fluid is circulated through the well as the diamond abrasive cable is reciprocated through a cured path within the target formation. The cable is safely contained inside a protective tubing everywhere except within the target formation area being cut. The entire tubing is reciprocated with the cable to prevent wear or cutting in areas not to be cut. As the cable wears, fresh sections of cable are continually moved into the cutting area. The drilling fluid provides sufficient hydrostatic pressure to prevent collapse of the slot until proppant sand or gravel can be circulated into the slot.
Figure 1; Cutting 140 degree vertical arc with tubing sheathed abrasive cable
Figure 2; Underground view of vertical slot being cut with 45 degree slant-hole rig
Figure 3; Slanted Slots cut from 90 degree arc with 45 degree entry
Figure 4; Horizontal cut with vertical entry
Fig 5: Detail of Abrasive cable inside of tubing, reciprocating with cranes
Ernie Carter, P.E.
Office: (281) 495-2603
Cell: (713) 412-5646
9702 Garden row Dr, Sugar Land, Texas 77498