Saturday, November 14, 2009

Cheap Energy with New Solar Device

Submitted by: John Schiffner
Researchers and scientists are putting on endless effort to make the sources of energy clean and green. There are many devices in the market that run on solar energy. The alternative energy atmosphere is charged with anticipation and excitement. But till now one of the biggest dampeners in green energy scenario is the prices. Fossil fuels are available cheaply all over the world. But solar, wind, geothermal or biofuels are still expensive and out of reach of commoners.
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The University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory Mirror Lab has paid attention to this particular aspect. They have produced the first prototype of a solar device that will hopefully not be outrageously priced. The device’s inventor Roger Angel’s expectations will ultimately generate electricity from the sun at a price akin to the cheapest fossil fuels. That’s what manufacturer and consumer both want. Every manufacturer aims for profit and all end users want to save money.

Roger Angel’s prototype makes use of mirrors. These mirrors are arranged in such a way that 21 segments form an array in a parabola on a lightweight aluminum frame. This arrangement helps in focusing the sun’s light on a small solar cell. Its first prototype is supposed to be shipped next week to Raytheon Missile Systems. This design could be used to build portable solar generators for battlefield deployment. This fact is reveled by Eric Betterton. He is a UA professor of atmospheric sciences and he is also the principal investigator for the project.
The prototype costs around about $300,000 to engineer and assemble, with its mirrors forged individually in the mirror lab and hand-coated. This project is undertaken by the UA with grants from Science Foundation Arizona. Angel who is the Mirror Lab’s founder and director, said the device uses only about $200 worth of glass and ultimately could be mass-produced for $1,500. It is estimated that at that price, the device would produce energy for $1 a watt. This is as cheap as coal-burning electrical plants.

More Energy Articles: Heartland Energy Colorado Home

Monday, October 12, 2009

Rigging Up at Heartland Energy Development Corporation

posted by: John Schiffner

Rigging up an offshore drilling rig is usually not as complicated as rigging up a land rig. Most offshore rigs can be moved across the water's surface by Heartland Energy Development Corporation with virtually no disassemble of major parts. For Heartland Energy Development Corporation to move most land rigs, crew members must disassemble many of its components. Disassembly is required so they can load the load the parts on trucks, planes, or helicopters for transportation to the next location. Once the contractor of Heartland Energy Development Corporation gets the land rig to the site, the next step is for the drilling crew to put the rig back together, or to "Rig Up". For safety, rig up usually occurs only during daylight hours. A rig usually has too much heavy equipment moving around during rig up for it to be safe in the dark, even with flood lights.

For most land rigs, rigging up means to put the rig parts back together so that the rig can drill a hole. It involves unloading and hooking up the rig engines, the mud tanks and pumps, as well as other on site equipment. One of the last steps and oen of the mdramatic, is raising the mast from hoizontal to vertical to read it for the drilling Heartland energy development corporation will be doing. After unloading and hooking up the engines to get power, crew memebers of Heartland Energy Development Corporation position the reg's substructure, whic is its base or foundation.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Oil and Gas Reservoirs

Submitted by: John Schiffner
Hydrocarbons and their associated impurities occur in rock formations that are usually buried thousands of feet or metres below the surface. Scientists and engineers of Heartland Energy Colorado often call rock formations that hold hydrocarbons "reservoirs."

Oil does not flow in underground rivers or pool up in subterranean lakes, contrary to hat some people think. And, as you've learned through reading this blog, gasoline and other refined hydrocarbons do not naturally occur in pockets under the ground, just aiting to be drilled for. Instead, crude oil and natural gas occur in buried rocks and once produced from a Heartland Energy Colorado well, companies have to refine the crude oil and procees the natural gas into useful products. Further, not every rock can hold hydrocarbons. To serve as an oil and gas reservoir, rocks have to meet several criteria for Heartland Energy Colorado to find use of them.

Characteristics of Reservoir Rocks
Nothing looks more solid than a rock. Yet, choose the right rock like a piece of sandstone or limestone and look at it under a microscope. You see many tiny opening sor voids. Geologists call these tiny openings "pores". A rock with pores is "porous" and a porous rock has "porosity." Reservoir rocks must be porous, because hydrocarbons can occur only in pores.

A reservoir rock is also permeable - that is its pores are connected. If hydrocarbons are in the pores of a rock, hey must be able to move out of them. Unless hydrocarbons can move from pore to pore, they remain locked in place, unable to flow into a well. A suitable reservoir rock must therefore be porous, permeable and contain enough hydrocarbons to make it economically feasible for the operators of Heartland Energy Colorado to drill for and produce them.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Drilling Operations: Fishing & Well Control

Article submitted by: John Schiffner

For our purposes special drilling operations include directional drilling, fishing, and well control. Directional drilling is initially drilling the hole off-vertical for various reasons. Fishing is the operation crew members implement to retrieve an object in the wellbore that doesn't belong there and impedes drilling. Well control is the techniques crew members use to regain control of the well should formation fluids inadvertently enter the well.

A fish is a piece of equipment, a tool, or a part of the drill string that the crew of Heartland Energy Colorado loses in a hole. Drilling personnel call small pieces, such as a bit cone or a wrench "junk." Whenever junk or a fish exists in a hole, the crew has to remove it or fish it out otherwise they cannot continue to drill. Over the years, fishing crews have developed many ingenious tools and techniques to retrieve fish. For example, the crew can run an overshot into the hole to he fish. Crew members of Heartland Energy Colorado, make up the overshot on drill pipe and lower the overshot over the fish. Grapples in the overshot latch onto the fish firmly. Then the crew pulls the overshot and attached fish out of the hole.

Another fishing tool is a spear. Unlike an overshot, which the crew places over the fish, a spear then grips insde the fish and allows the crew to retrieve it. Other fishing tools include powerful magnets and baskets. The crew uses them to fish for junk. Since no two fishing jobs are alike, manufacturer and fishing experts have developed many other fishing tools to meet the unique needs of fishing crews.

Well Control
As mentioned earlier, one vital job drilling fluid should do is keep formation fluids from entering the wellbore. If enough formation fluids enter the wellbore, drilling personnel of Heartland Energy Colorado say that the well "kicks." A kick, if not recognized and properly handled, an lead to a blowout. A blowout can be a catastrophic event. In many cases, fluids in the blowout ignite and reduce the rig to a melted pile of junk.

Blowouts not only waste oil and gast but also threaten the lives of the crews working on the rig. Obviously drilling crews take a great deal of care not to allow blowouts, and in fact not too many occur at Heartland Energy Colorado. Because a blowout is a spectacular show and human lives are sometimes lost, a blowout often becomes a media event. Unfortunately, the impression may linger that blowouts are not the rarity they actually are. In fact, thousands of wells are drilled every year and very few of them blow out.

More articles by John Schiffner on Heartland Energy Colorado | Colorado Energy News | Heartland Energy

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Formation of Oil (Part 1 of 2)

Dead organic matter must lie in either stagnant, oxygen-free waters at the bottom of the sea until buried or be buried quickly after death and achieve a concentration of one to three percent by weight to become a future oil reservoir, although this concentration can be as high as ten percent.  The next step is burying the organically rich sediment deep enough to generate the temperature and pressure necessary to transform organic matter to oil. 

With 7,000 feet of overburden, the pressure is sufficient to raise the sediment’s temperature to 150 degrees Fahrenheit, the minimum to produce a heavy and generally undesirable grade of crude oil.  Preferred light crudes are produced as one approaches 18,000 feet and 300 degrees Fahrenheit.  Beyond 18,000 feet, the temperature and pressure are sufficient to transform oil to graphite and natural gas. The oil window is 7,000 – 18,000 feet below the surface of the earth, meaning that sediments at river mouths must be buried between 1.5 – 3.5 miles of debris to produce oil by either the ocean bottom sinking or the surrounding land mass rising or a combination of both.

The properties of the oil depend on the type of organism, its concentration, depth of burial and the nature of the surrounding sediment.  Oil properties vary from one field to another and no two fields have exactly the same properties.  Commercial grades of crude are really a mix of oil from different oil fields in the same region that have similar properties.  A few are from different oil fields with dissimilar properties such as Urals, a specified mix of light sweet crude from western Siberia and heavy sour crude from the Ural region of Russia.

Heartland Energy Colorado is one of the top hydrocarbon-based energy providers in the USA. They have many drilling locations throughout the country and remain one of the top producers of US oil & gas companies. For more information on Heartland Energy Colorado, see Heartland Energy Development Corporation online.