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About extended reach technology

Extended reach technology enables ExxonMobil to develop long-reach wells that can extend horizontally for miles underground.

Overview

By using this technology, previously inaccessible resources can be developed, often in complex and challenging environments such as the Arctic. At our Sakahlin-1 development offshore eastern Russia, wells are drilled from a location on land to the oil and gas under the ocean.

Extended reach technology reduces our environmental footprint and, in offshore applications, limits our presence in the marine environment, reducing underwater noise and other activities. In onshore applications where a well is drilled from a land-based location to reach oil and gas deep under the ocean, interaction with marine life and the marine environment can be entirely eliminated.

ExxonMobil has an impressive record of completing successful developments and has a suite of patented technologies that position us as the industry leader in extended reach technology.  We have drilled 26 of the world’s 30 longest-reach wells, and we continue to advance extended reach technology by progressing several additional drilling and completion technologies.

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Video — Extended reach drilling

Fast Drill technology

ExxonMobil is an experienced leader in the application of advanced techniques that enable safe, reliable and cost-effective well drilling and completion. Our strength lies in the ability to bridge the gap between fundamental science and operational practices to lower costs, enhance production and reduce environmental impacts.

The Fast Drill Process is a physics-based process combining real-time digital analysis of the drilling system’s energy consumption with a structured approach to well planning and design. The Fast Drill Process ensures the well is drilled as efficiently as possible.

ExxonMobil’s drilling rate has improved more than 80 percent since introducing the Fast Drill Process, resulting in an annual energy savings equivalent to removing 1,200 cars from the road. The additional reduction in fuel consumed also means a proportionate decrease in emissions.

In California, at our Santa Ynez Unit, shown in the photo, we use extended reach technology to access more oil and gas from the existing platform eliminating additional impact on the marine environment.

Record-setting offshore Russia

The challenges of developing the technically complex Sakhalin-1 Project offshore eastern Russia are complicated by the harsh Arctic environment. Understanding the local cultural, political and physical environments and leveraging cutting-edge technology, such as extended reach technology, are critical to the project’s success.

The first phase of Sakhalin-1 uses a land-based drilling rig with numerous extended-reach wells and an offshore drilling and production platform. The land-based drilling rig, Yastreb (“Hawk”), is one of the most powerful in the industry, designed to withstand earthquakes and severe Arctic temperatures. Yastreb drills down and then horizontally under the sea floor a total distance of more than seven miles (12 kilometers), making these extended-reach wells the longest in the world. Extended-reach wells reduce development costs and minimize marine impacts by avoiding the need for additional offshore structures. Using ExxonMobil’s proprietary Fast Drill technology, the Sakhalin-1 project continues to efficiently deliver world record extended-reach wells.

Exxon Neftegas Limited (ENL), a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation, is operator of the Sakhalin-1 Project, which is located offshore Sakhalin Island. Our partners include the Japanese company Sakhalin Oil and Gas Development Co. Ltd.; affiliates of Rosneft, the Russian state-owned oil company, RN-Astra and Sakhalinmorneftegas-Shelf; and the Indian state-owned oil company ONGC Videsh Ltd.