The demand for oil and gas has been increasing worldwide for the past few years, and offshore drilling has played a significant role in prospering the industry. Offshore drilling involves boring for natural oil or petroleum on sea floors.
How It’s Done
The entire operation of finding natural gas or oil costs millions on drilling rigs and other equipment as well as on the workforce, including engineers, geologists, and other drilling specialists. This is a great risk for oil companies because not all exploration yield positive results.
Offshore drilling needs geologists to study the surface area. They also check the site, the satellite maps, and analyze soil samples. Geologists will use different equipment to locate oil traps. They use magnetic survey equipment to map out any magnetic variances, which points out signs of oil traps. Geologists also use shock waves for seismic surveying or sparking. Geologists will analyze the sound that is bounced back from rocks that were touched by the shock waves sent to the ocean floor.
The petroleum company will request for drilling rights from the local government where they have identified the oil trap. Exploratory drilling can only be commenced after a drilling right is granted to the company.
Oil drilling expeditions can be very expensive, so the company would drill a few wells within the site. This is for them to determine if an oil trap actually exists or not. This will also help them identify the quantity and quality of the oil. They will determine whether it is sufficient for a full-blown offshore production platform operation.
Drilling for Oil
If the quality and quantity pleases the company, they will then construct an oil platform in the area to start the harvest. Natural oil supplied, in general, can last for twenty years. Thus, the purpose and construction of the oil platform is intended and designed for long-term use. These are enormous structures anchored on the ocean floor through the use of tethering cables. Some platforms have concrete or metal foundations to ensure the stability of the platform especially during severe weather conditions.
Metal pipes or casings will be placed and are usually cemented on the drilled hole to prevent any gas leakage incidents. Drilling rigs make the entire process of accessing and extracting oil much viable. The harvested petroleum undergoes oil refinement. The purpose of oil refinement process is to separate oil, gas, water, and sediments.
For dry natural gases, you need to store and send them through pipelines for treatment. Wet natural gases, on the other hand, have different liquid particles, which is why they need to undergo filtration. When all the oil beneath the sea floor is extracted and the well dries up, the company will remove the platform and shall close the oilrig.