In the Texas Panhandle one of the greatest difficulties of operation is theparaffin situation. Oil in that, field ranges from 83? up to about 90?, as itexists in the sand. It is from 2900 to 3000 ft. deep, and should be up around120 to 150?, as compared to other oils in the United States. Furthermore, theoil in the Panhandle congeals to a solid ball of wax at from 55 to 60?, whichgives a margin on an average of about 20?, to get oil from the sand into thepipe lines or points of use.
The gas pressure in the Panhandle field is about 420 lb., which is abouthalf the hydrostatic head. It is not sufficient to flow the wells that we termthe flow wells in the Panhandle. They are not what I would call flow wells, because if you shut in one of them and open it up again the well is dead, andit is necessary to swab or agitate the gas with the oil to make it come back.The oil in most of the so-called flow wells is produced in a spray form. Thegas factor is extremely high and there is an enormous amount of gas in thefield which has been wasted.
It is estimated that the original supply of gas was about 120 quadrillionfeet. In other words, there was enough gas in the Panhandle originally to runthe State of Texas for 166 years, if the gas were consumed every day of theyear at the rate of the peak load in Texas during the closing month of theyear. The gas is in a lime above the main pay. It varies from nothing up to 500ft. thick at different points in the field. Between the big gas and the pay itvaries from nothing up to 150 ft., which in one part of the field is in a limeand in another part of the field in a granite wash. There is a shale breakwhich varies from nothing up to 100 ft. or thereabout. It is different indifferent parts of the field.
It is impossible to drill in this gas with the hole loaded. Unhydrated limeis put into the hole and then water. The water slackens down the unhydratedlime and sticks the tools in the hole. For that reason they are unable to use arotary.
We at present, and others I believe, are working on a method of trying todoctor this solution, so to speak, to enable us to drill with a hole loadedwith fluid and to save the gas. At the present time I estimate that 100 millioncubic feet of gas is wasted in the Panhandle daily.