Thursday, August 30, 2012

Mystery of the Week: OXY's #22544 -- Two Long Laterals From Same Wellhead


September 20, 2012: the sundry forms and reports are finally catching up with what's going on with this well. OXY re-entered the well on August 4, 2012, to "redrill the lateral due to complications of running production liner after the first lateral was drilled." On September 1, 2012, the operator's engineer phoned, "can not get liner into sidetrack. Plan to TA well and evaluate for plans."

Original Post

This will involve bringing up the NDIC GIS map server.

If you do that, zoom in on section 24-144-97
  • 22544, TA, OXY USA, Kary 2-24-13H-144-97, Cabernet; see note of September 20, 2012, above.

Clearly there are two horizontals running north from this well, and both are almost the full length one would expect of a long lateral, but one is a bit shorter.

When one reads the file report, there is no mention of the second lateral. There is hint of a problem at about 12,000 feet (or thereabouts) but no mention of a second lateral. In fact, when one reads the file report one almost gets the feeling that the file report belongs to a different well. I assumed that when they ran into difficulty in the horizontal, they drilled a side track, but there is no mention of this in the file. It reads as if there were minimal problems drilling, and simply one long horizontal.

I can only assume, being an amateur, I am missing something, but clearly there are two horizontal legs.

The scout ticket also references two horizontals:

  • Lateral 1 Start coordinates 29 N 76 E from wellhead, end coordinates 9567 N 1W from wellhead
  • Side Track 1 Start coordinates 792 N 239 W from well head, end coordinates 10584 N 108 W from wellhead. Even the little graphic on the scout ticket clearly shows two long laterals.

A reader sent this in to me. Enquiring minds want to know.


  1. Bruce, Congradulations on 3 MILLION page views..
    keep up the good work..
    i think it is great readers from all over are contributing to the blog..

  2. Do you ever envision the same vertical section being used to branch multiple horizonal branches? Or is it a conflict to be mixing various oils from different formations?

  3. Yes, that will happen. It has already been done in the Williston Basin.

    Also, in this article on the Permian, it's mentioned:

  4. How about this on the multiple-leg mystery ... zoom way, way in on the ArcIMS viewer so all you can see is are the two wells: 22543 (leg going south) and 22544 (leg going north). That looks to me like the horizontal legs are drawn free hand on a tablet. That is, the lines are "squiggly." (Obviously they don't drill like that.) My guess it is simply an extra leg drawn in that should have been erased.

    1. I can pretty much guarantee they aren't drawing these lines by hand.