Oil Country Tubular Goods made from steel have to withstand tough underground conditions, so top quality is required. And this is exactly why voestalpine Tubulars GmbH & Co KG has made a name for itself.
The temperature, pressure and corrosion in a wellbore take their toll on the material. If a pipe does not hold up here it can have serious consequences for people and the environment. Moreover, in the production of oil and gas there are always enormous sums of money at stake: The average cost for a horizontal wellbore in shale runs from 4 to 8 million US dollars. It’s no wonder that the American Petroleum Institute (API) has prescribed strict standards and specifications.
Strong yet elastic and flexible
Oil Country Tubular Goods must possess high strength while also being elastic and flexible, as the invention of horizontal drilling has led to an increase in horizontal drilling. The drill string is bent over a long distance – approx. 10 to 15 degrees per 30 meters. After the 90-degree curve, the oil country tubular also must once again become straight.
Above all, the casing – the outer tubes that line and stabilize the wellbore – must fulfill the most stringent requirements. After being inserted into the wellbore, the casing is pressure tested for safety: The bottom end of the casing string is sealed off with a cap and pressure is placed on the drilling mud. This pressure is maintained for several minutes to ensure that there is not even the smallest leak.
Sophisticated threaded connections
The threaded connections link the individual Oil Country Tubular Goods into one long, continuous casing or tubing string – they must be absolutely gastight as well as strain- and pressure-resistant. “The connections have to be just as strong as the tube itself – we place great importance on that,” says Robert Scott, Managing Director of voestalpine Tubular Corporation in Houston, Texas.
The latest video from the voestalpine image and brand campaign focuses on Oil Country Tubular Goods, produced in Austria and installed in America. An ongoing blog series offers further insight and background information about the product, the areas of application and the market as well as about Robert Scott, the star of the campaign.