Horizontal and Vertical drilling are two different drilling techniques to explore and develop oil and gas properties
Vertical drilling involves drilling a well straight down into the earth until the drill bit reaches the formation being developed. The well is then completed and starts producing oil or natural gas.
- Advantage(s) : Vertical well drilling is considered a conventional method of oil and gas extraction. Nevertheless, vertical wells usually less expensive to develop due to the directional boring that isn’t needed.
- Disadvantage(s) : Vertical wells have traditionally depended on the pressure on the deposit to facilitate extraction, something that is not possible in tight oil and other unconventional oil formations.
- Common use : In the sea, vertical wells are still the more common method as drilling from an offshore platform is already quite complex
horizontal drilling involves drilling a well to a predetermined depth based on seismic and other geological data and then turning the well horizontally to a set lateral length. The well is then completed and production of oil and natural gas begins. This is sometimes referred to as directional drilling.
- Advantage(s) :
- increasing the drainage area of the platform
- prevention of gas coning or water coning problems
- increasing the penetration of the producing formation
- increasing the efficiency of enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques
- improving productivity in fractured reservoirs by intersecting a number of vertical fractures.
- Disadvantage (s) : Horizontal Drilling is more expensive than Vertical drilling due its needs for sophisticated tools and technology.
- Common use : It is usually utilized to draw out energy from a source that runs continuously and horizontally, such as a layer of shale rock
Hyne, Norman J. 2012. Petroleum Geology, Exploration, Drilling & Production. Oklahoma. PennWell Corporation