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Fracking For Oil And Natural Gas

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ASSIGNMENT #13

Fracking for Oil and Natural Gas

WRITTEN BY

MOSOPE ODUWOLE
250817380
moduwol@uwo.ca Table of Contents
1.0 INTRODUCTION 3
1.1 CONVENTIONAL AND UNCONVENTIONAL OIL 3

1.0 INTRODUCTION
1.1 CONVENTIONAL AND UNCONVENTIONAL OIL
For centuries, oil and natural gas have been drilled and mined using conventional means, by digging in oil rich sandstones, conventional rocks. Due to the permeability of these rocks, it is easy for the oil and gas to flow to the surface from well bores and be collected for commercial use. But recently, concerns have been raised regarding the over-exploitation of these resources, as various reports show that with the current level of exploration, these reserves will soon be depleted.
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The difference between these two sources – conventional and unconventional oil – is in the type of rock and depth of drilling, as well as the method used in bringing up the oil and gas. Whereas conventional oil and gas makes use of vertically drilled bores and shallow depths, unconventional oil is drilled at depths farther below in the earth’s surface (depths of up to 10,000 feet have been recorded), by making use of horizontal bores (figure 1).
1.2 HYDRAULIC FRACTURING FOR OIL AND GAS
Prior to what is today known as Hydraulic Fracturing or “Fracking”, in the 19th century, water wells and bores had been fractured using explosives to create high permeability for both water and oil wells. Over the years, the technology has been refined and improved into what is used today for exploration in Shale rocks due to their low-permeability.
Fracking is the process of pumping large gallons of water, mixed with sand and a “cocktail” of chemical compounds into existing crevices of underground oil and gas reserves, under very high pressure, thereby creating fissures and cracks in the rocks and hence improving the porosity and permeability of the rock formation. Figure 1: Conventional Gas reservoirs and Unconventional Gas Reservoirs (Shale Rock)
Naturally occurring veins in the rock formations are used in the conventional sources to tap the oil, but in unconventional sources, these veins are either not large enough, or are too far apart and not
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