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Oilfield Tech Yields Better Returns at OGIS 2016


On April 11 and 12, 2016, the Independent Petroleum Association of America presented their 22nd annual Oil & Gas Investment Symposia – OGIS 2016.

In addition to restructuring debt and G&A, focusing on prime acreage (such as the Permian Basin), and stockpiling cash, many of the operators highlighted technical advances in their operations that are generating positive yields. Let’s take a look at some of the more commonly referenced.

Everything at Once

WPX Energy had a great slide that pulled a number of their technical improvements together into their vision for the company.

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Image Source: Company OGIS 2016 Presentation

A couple of things that really stand out to me on this slide:

  • As opposed to a number of other Permian Operators, they are keeping their laterals under a mile (many others are going for the 7,500-10,000 laterals).
  • 1500 lb/ft+ of Proppant. That’s a lot of proppant. 4750 feet X 1500lbs = 7,125,000 lbs! If we go with the upper end of the amount of sand a railcar can carry (220,000 lbs) that’s 32 railcars per well. Of just sand. And that plus sign is a big plus sign – if they go up to 2000 lbs/ft, that’d be 43 railcars.
  • An increase of focus on the real-time drilling problem of 3D Seismic/ Geosteering.


A number of operators highlighted the increasing density of their well plans. For example, Jones Energy have largely tied their operational uplift to higher density frack stages.

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Image Source: Company OGIS 2016 Presentation

Jones also points out their additional reliance on geosteering and artificial lift as driving factors in their optimization.


Unit Corporation is interesting for a variety of reason – they are an operator (Texas, Mid-continent, Rockies, and Appalachia), a driller (93 rigs – 8 of which are their proprietary BOSS walking rigs), and have mid-stream operations. They have been pursuing a recompletion program in the Gilly field in East Texas with impressive results.

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Image Source: Company OGIS 2016 Presentation

Improving Artificial Lift

Although no company at OGIS devoted a slide to improvements in Artificial Lift, you can see from the slides above that companies are relying on those improvements, mostly derived from field tuning gas lift methods, and knowing when to deploy ESPs.

Data Data Data

During Mondays lunch session Drillinginfo CEO Allen Gilmer, along with the chief of our consulting operations Carl Neuhaus, walked the attendees through a number of the issues facing US Onshore E&P (and the investment behind it) today. After some macro discussion of those challenges, they walked through the state of Data, Rigs, Permits, New Production Capacity, DUCs, Expiring Acreage, Geological Assessments, Operator Differentials, Multivariate Analysis, and ultimately walked the audience through a method to bring much of this information together in order to optimize well design.

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Your Turn

What do you think? Leave a comment below.

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Eric Roach

Eric Roach is the editor of Drillinginfo's blog, which was selected as the Top Oil & Gas Industry Blog based on visibility, engagement and relevance. He also prepares a weekly newsletter of top industry news for blog subscribers, and would be grateful if you would subscribe and tell your friends. (There's a box on the upper right of the page where you can subscribe).