WorldWide Drilling Resource

7 SEPTEMBER 2022 WorldWide Drilling Resource® Roads, Bridges, History by Ronald B. Peterson Drilling Products Specialist, Mountainland Supply Company This month, we will discuss roads, bridges, and a bit of history as they relate to drilling. When a construction project is designed and planned, focus needs to be on the ultimate location of the proposed site to determine the feasibility of the location, the anticipated stability of the geology in the area, and any potential problems that may be encountered. The methods used to analyze the formation may include soil sampling; which is simply pushing a hollow probe into the ground either by hand or with the use of a soil sampling machine, depending on the extent of sampling desired. The sample is removed and can then be evaluated to determine the quality of the formation and the level of stability it can provide. When more in-depth analysis is needed, an auger drill can be used to retrieve the samples to provide larger samples at potentially greater depths for a better evaluation. The sample is simply removed from the auger flights for analysis. More extensive sampling can be taken using a sonic drill which can drill to greater depths and remove undisturbed samples from the ground for even better analysis. Once the project has been designed, if there are river crossings, bridges, or tunnels involved there may be additional drilling required (where necessary) to install supports and columns for the road in those areas. If support columns are needed, the holes will have to be drilled to specifications to seat the column in a formation where there is adequate support for the road and any anticipated weight it may carry. All of these methods require specific sampling and drilling equipment, which in turn, may require specific drilling fluids. Any construction project provides multiple opportunities to the drilling community. All of the topics can be the subject of separate columns. If you want me to drill deeper on any specific topic, please let me know. Since the focus of this month is also history, here goes. According to Genesis, the first well recorded was hand dug by Abimelech. The first drilling equipment was a Spring Pole. The deepest hand-dug hole was started at six feet in diameter and reduced down to four feet in diameter partway down to a depth of 1280 feet deep in Woodingdean, England, and completed in four years. The largest hand-dug well was 32 feet deep and dug to a depth of 109 feet in Greensburg, Kansas, in 1887, and completed in 1888. The longest hole drilled was the Kola Superdeep borehole drilled by Exxon to a depth of 40,230 feet and took 20 years to reach that depth where it was ended prematurely due to technical difficulties and a bottom hole temperature of 356ºF (180ºC). Thanks for reading. As I often say, “A man has to know his limitations.” Working together, it is amazing where we can go. Enjoy the trip! If you have any questions on drilling fluids or if you have another topic you would like addressed, please remember this column is ours. Help me make it of value to you. It needs to be an interactive tool. I need your feedback. Please send your suggestions to Michele (below) and she will get them to me. Ron Ron Peterson may be contacted via e-mail to C&G Join us at the Franciscan Renewal Center in Scottsdale, Arizona September 21-22, 2022 Register at Other questions: e-mail or call 917-842-3971 Increasing the Water Supply in the Colorado Basin Conference