In a world with growing oil and gas demand growth, it is important for investors to know the key aspects of hydraulic fracturing in order to make informed investment decisions.
This complete guide to hydraulic fracturing will answer the following questions:
What is hydraulic fracturing?
How does hydraulic fracturing work?
What are the types of hydraulic fracturing?
What are the key Pros and Cons of hydraulic fracturing?
What is Hydraulic Fracturing?
Hydraulic fracturing, also referred to as fracturing or fracking, is a type of a well stimulation process that increases the production of oil and gas. This hydraulic fracturing stimulation is typically performed to increase the flow of fluids in rocks that usually have low permeability, such as shale and tight sandstone.
The purpose of hydraulic fracturing is, as the name itself suggests, to create new fractures in the rock or increase existing fractures so that fluids, such as oil and gas, can flow more freely.
Without hydraulic fracturing, oil and gas that are tightly locked in rocks with low permeability cannot be economically extracted. Before hydraulic fracturing, the tightly contained hydrocarbons in rocks were too expensive to be profitably produced. Due to the hydraulic fracturing, many previously unproductive formations in shale rocks in the United States have started to produce oil and gas.
Despite the fact that hydraulic fracturing became universally known this century, this well stimulation process is not a novel invention.
In vertical oil and gas wells, hydraulic fracturing has been used for more than half a century, in order to boost the flow of fluids in conventional oil and gas formations.
Hydraulic fracturing in the United States was first tested by Stanolind Oil in the Hugoton gas field in Kansas in the 1940s.
But it was the horizontal drilling of oil and gas wells that ushered in the U.S. shale revolution which turned the United States into the world’s top oil and gas producer in less than two decades.