industry terminology

Industry Terminololgy

Definitions of commonly used terminology within the oil and gas industry.

AER – Alberta Energy Regulator

Cardium formation – an ancient rock formation over 2,200 metres below the surface. It extents approximately 1000 km long, and swings through a 90 degree arc from Waterton Lakes National Park and Canada-U.S. border, past Grande Prairie, Alberta and beyond to Dawson Creek, British Columbia.

Casing – a steel pipe which is cemented into the wellbore to prevent the flow of drilling foreign fluids into the aquifers. It is a permanent structure of the wellbore that protects all aquifers, including in-use aquifers that supply domestic water wells.

Horizontal drilling – a technique whereby the well is drilled vertically and then turned at a predetermined angle to reach the intended target zone at a final angle of 90 degrees. From this point the well is drilled horizontally to the final depth. Utilizing such technology will reduce the number of surface locations, roads and pipelines required, thus significantly reducing the environmental footprint.

Hydraulic fracturing – also known as fracing – is a well stimulation process performed to improve production from geological formations where natural flow is restricted.

Hydraulic fracturing fluid – both water and/or hydrocarbon are the base for frac fluid, depending on the rock characteristics. Additives, which make up approximately .05%, include naturally occurring hydrocarbon based on the oil coming out of the ground.

Regulations – guidelines which are set and administered by a number of federal and provincial Ministries, including environment, natural resources, sustainable development, energy, transport, industry and others. These are all in additional to oil and gas regulatory entities – provincial boards and the National Energy Board.