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  • New rig construction targets onshore unconventional resources


    R. Mason

    Unconventional onshore US drilling is driving mergers, rig utilization, drilling techniques and innovative rig designs. New designs may bring the next step improvement in productivity gains as drillers embark on the largest retooling effort in 25 years. The onshore market is undergoing a rapid transition to unconventional oil and gas as a primary target. Advancements in drilling and completion technologies, including fracture stimulation and horizontal/ directional drilling, coupled with high commodity prices, are generating access to tight-formation resources that were considered uneconomic as recently as three years ago. US contractors are working in partnership with oil and gas operators to develop fit-for-purpose modern technology land rigs, financed through multi-year term contracts. A significant and increasing portion of this equipment will be used in exploiting hydrocarbon resources in tight sands, shales and coalbed methane deposits in the US onshore market.

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