Water Well Journal

April 2016

Water Well Journal

Issue link: https://read.dmtmag.com/i/655200

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Page 33 of 67

WWJ: Do you see horizontal and an- gled wells as a future niche market for drilling contractors? David: I got into it by accident. Some- one asked me if we could do it. It was a customer looking to solve a problem and we came up with a method to do it and then had more requests, so we kept finding better ways to do it. I can't see it being a big market because it's limited in scope where you can use it. If you can get conventional vertical water wells and you don't have water quality issues, that would probably be more economical. We do about a half a dozen to 10 wells a year, working in about five different states year-round. Michael: We are seeing a small increase in the number of queries we receive about the technology although it's un- likely the market will support too many contractors. It's difficult to develop ex- pertise in both horizontal drilling and well installation. Most companies either install vertical wells or use horizontal drilling to install pipelines or utilities. It takes a commitment and a lot of crossover knowledge to do both. The investment in equipment and experi- enced personnel is a barrier to startups. WWJ: Are there certain suppliers that cater to horizontal water well drilling? Are they from the oil and gas sector? Michael: We use suppliers from several sectors for our materials. Some of the major suppliers, like Halliburton, Baroid, and Johnson Screen, supply to both the water well industry and oil and gas. David: We buy regular steel casing from casing manufacturers. The customized downhole tools we use during the drilling process we make in-house. You can see even though angled wells have been in use for several decades, all indicators show it's a niche market. However, as water scarcity and drought continues to be an issue, inno- vations are being made to find water where it is. Angled wells will be a part of this future. As the oil and gas drilling market be- gins to slow, perhaps their technologies will become more affordable and can be applied to water exploration. When searching for water for customers, every contractor will tell you: "We've got to look at the problem from every possible angle." WWJ waterwelljournal.com 32 April 2016 WWJ Lana Straub, with a background in the legal and financial aspects of small business, is the office manager of Straub Corp., Stan- ton, Texas, an environmental and water well drilling firm owned and operated by her family for more than 50 years. She can be reached at Lana@Straub Corporation.com. Tooling Up Have questions on angled wells? Ask our roundtable: Michael Lubrecht, LG Directed Technologies Drilling Inc. mike@horizontaldrill.com John McCray, Ph.D. Colorado School of Mines jmccray@mines.edu Gary Soden, CWD Clear Heart Drilling Inc. gary@clearheartdrilling.com David Traut, MGWC, CVCLD Mark J. Traut Wells Inc. dave@trautwells.com egasāˆ™Dec. 6-8 V Las 8, 201 1 SM 6 SM s of s s of w of s s o s s s s s o s of w of b s y of w of w 2 da s s of e 3 d 2 s of e y 3 da 3 da y 2 da 2 da 2 k xhibits i erings onus oe kshops kshops or or w w xhibits ts e e s h b he b k a he b he M T eek of e yo our plan y or the indus k tion fo ec dir or a A new name fo oun o Gr its name t e t a oundw he Gr T eek of est w est w b E t f f t e h t t n y o s a o a w t s no y e y s leading annual ev ' y str n esh ne a n , and fr , bold ew ndw eek in 2016! w We er t a w E er r xpo has changed Ex f t e th ear r ear r he y he y ealed l d end! . tt tt t en . ealed v e k a M ur plan our pla our p y e y k n o ns o a e o t a oundw r G t o a w t w t w t s no no om o .c eek erW end! tt ANGLED WELLS from page 31

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