Using capital and power cost as measures, a comparison is made of the two most popular forms of artificial lift: beam pumps and submersible pumps. After discussing the difficulties involved, and simplifications required in making the comparison, limits of operation are established and a common range of depths and rates suitable for both techniques is found. Within this range many sets of equipment are sized, using computerized selection programs, and capital and power costs are calculated. The results are compared and a total ‘10 year cost’ is estimated for each unit. Capital costs are found to be higher for beam pumps, but power consumption is less. Charts summarize the findings for easy reference.

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