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The Difference is in the Detail 

25 August 2022

Commentary by Viljoen Duvenhage, VP Operations


Within the current context of worldwide energy demands, the year to date has seen a concerted effort by the industry to meet global requirements. While this is important, as a business, we have long argued that activity must be undertaken in a way that does not set-back ambitious net zero targets and the ongoing energy transition. 

Following recent discussions with both clients and stakeholders, it has been rewarding to see a recognition of the lower energy use and resource consumption derived from using our products. This awareness has grown rapidly over the last few months and it’s something that the entire team take great pride in. 

While it is important to reiterate that the CO2 emissions for our stimulation activity are proven to be a fraction of alternative practices, the use of our technology also delivers several standalone benefits. These include accelerated production, increased accuracy, the need for reduced infrastructure and increased flow rates. 

When our product offering is compared to market alternatives, it is clear that the technology used really does set us apart from the rest. The difference is in the detail. 

An alternative well stimulation approach  

The approach we take for our customers around the world has always been centred on the application of multilateral technology. Over the years, we have been able to clearly demonstrate how this technology has facilitated a new degree of accuracy and precision in reservoir stimulation. I would go as far as saying that the technological innovation we have shown now guarantees a solution unlike anything else available. 

Of course, it would be wrong of me to say that we are the only stimulation option that the market can access. Several alternatives exist, most notably those providing what is known as ‘matrix stimulation’ and even hydraulic fracturing. With matrix stimulation, activity is designed to treat the near-wellbore reservoir formation and sees acid, solvent, or in many cases, chemical treatments being used. The intended outcome looks to increase the permeability of the formation near the wellbore, increasing the output of the well as a result. With hydraulic fracturing, water or chemicals are injected to produce fractures in the reservoir. 

In many cases, these approaches will prove to be successful in delivering the required outputs. However, it’s only when looking at their use in greater detail that the potential failings begin to arise. Perhaps the most obvious is that the use of hydraulic fracturing directly increases the resources and personnel required to make the activity a success. This in turn increases CO2 emissions, both in terms of POB and fuel usage. This is even before taking the challenges associated with increased HSE requirements into account.  Elsewhere with matrix stimulation, accuracy of activity is not guaranteed. While our targeted placement of needles can stimulate tight zones, matrix stimulation only works on areas that will accept fluid.   

The difference is in the detail 

Our unrivalled technology has defined a new level of precision and efficiency in reservoir stimulation. I have spoken above about how the market must look at ways to increase hydrocarbon recovery and maximise the valuable assets available.  

However, given ongoing economic constraints, it is now more important than ever that operators are provided with cost-effective and efficient production methods to do so. This must be allied with an acceptance that operators must undertake recovery in a way that does not set-back the environmental strides made to date. 

By looking at the detail and understanding the needs of an ever-changing sector, we have developed tailor-made solutions that are helping to deliver much-needed enhanced production rates.

Not only that, but the technology is proven to reduce the need for multiple wells, while increasing accessible reserves and improving the reservoir connectivity. This is all achieved within a context of reduced emissions.  

Our technology will continue to drive us forward 

In general, I believe that the industry as a whole is now better at optimising operations and determining mutual objectives. This can only be a good thing. Close partnership working, as we have shown over the course of this year, will drive the sector forward. 

All of us in the industry recognise how important it is to make the most of the resources that are available. Now more than ever as we work with our partners, there is general feeling that we’re all in this together. That leads to a working environment where knowledge is openly shared, which in turn leads to enhanced problem solving. Again, there is a strong focus on the detail at all levels of activity. This will continue to drive our offering forward. 

Our investment in our market-leading technologies has ensured that we can remain ahead of the curve, using ground-breaking solutions to support, optimise and enhance production. Our point of difference from market alternatives relates directly to the solutions we provide. By focusing on the detail, we will continue to lead the way, supporting our customers with their stimulation requirements as we do so. 

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