Hydraulic Fracturing

By Seung, Leah, Chase, Nilasri

Innovation: hydraulic fracturing

What is it made of?

Steel pipe, known as surface casing, is cemented into place at the uppermost portion of a well for the explicit purpose of protecting groundwater. This casing and cementing is a critical part of the well construction that protects not only any water zones, but also the integrity of the production zone(s).


Who and where was it invented?

Traced back to the 1940s, hydraulic fracturing had not been utilized on a massive scale until 2003,when energy companies began actively expanding natural gas exploration with an emphasis in shale formations in Texas, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Wyoming, Utah and Maryland.


How does it work?

The fracking process involves pumping water, chemicals and sand (proppant) slurry at high pressure into a well, which fractures the surrounding rock formation and props open passages, allowing natural gas to more freely flow from rock fractures to the production well. The chemicals used in this process include but are not limited to: benzene, gelling agents, crosslinkers, friction reducers, corrosion inhibitors, scale inhibitors, biocides and, in some cases, diesel fuel.

What is its impact on society

The ability to produce more oil and natural gas from older wells and to develop new production once thought impossible has made the process valuable for US domestic energy production. Without hydraulic fracturing, as much as 80 percent of unconventional production from such formations as gas shales.

What is the impact of your innovation on globalization?

Oil and gas has been restored and infact, traded between countries. Barnett shale play in the Dallas/Fort Worth, TX, area has brought literally thousands of jobs into the area. Royalties and taxes paid to the counties and property owners have resulted in a positive economic boost. Soon there will be more communities that stand to gain similar economic benefits, such as the Fayetteville shale (Arkansas), the Marcellus shale (Pennsylvania), the Haynesville shale (Louisiana), and the Bakken Shale (North Dakota).

​How has it impacted the way people use their resources?

Hydraulic Fracturing also known as ‘fracking” is the process of creating fractures in rocks and rock formations making room allowing more and oil and gas to flow out of the formation, from where it can be extracted. this ask method of fracking helps the people to more resources.

How has it impacted the way people interact with others?

Many people believe that fracking should be illegal because the chemicals being put in the ground causing big conflicts between people.

How has it impacted where people are able to live?

Because Fracking is putting chemicals into the ground many people are concerned if placing houses under the chemicals or in the vicinity could be dangerous or even life threatening.
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