Automated directional drilling tech superior to human decision-making, says Motive

Use of the Bit Guidance System results in faster, more accurate wells with higher production potential, according to Motive. Image: Business Wire

Using its directional drilling Bit Guidance System, Motive Drilling Technologies has now guided over two million feet of horizontal and extended reach wells for over a dozen oil and gas companies across North America.

Motive has applied the kind of automated decision-making thinking that has gone into making medical decisions, playing games such as Jeopardy and chess, and for automatically piloting cars and planes to improve the drilling process. Its Bit Guidance System provides turn-by-turn instructions for optimized directional drilling of horizontal wells using automated decision-making.

Directional drilling decisions are driven by algorithms that leverage data analytics, real time drilling dynamics and economic modelling. The system delivers turn-by-turn downhole bit navigation guidance, continuously balancing drilling costs with production impact.

The system takes out the human component that is responsible for much of the inconsistent performance seen in the field today, Motive said. With the system performing all the heavy computational lifting, a single expert directional driller can now guide multiple wells from a single location.

In accomplishing the two-million-feet milestone, the Dallas-based company said it has overcome the hurdle for acceptance that a machine can make decisions faster and more reliably than humans.

"Truthfully there was doubt on the part of some of our technical team during our early relationship with the Motive team,” Ken Topolinsky, senior vice-president, Engineering & Applied Technology for Hunt Oil Company, stated in a press release. “Over a short time though that skepticism gave way to confidence that the platform truly does improve the directional drilling process by navigating the optimal path and is therefore an important contributor to our improved performance.

“The graphical drillers' panel interface conveys the state of operations and directional control in a way that speaks clearly to our team of drilling engineers, rig-site personnel and geoscientists to improve confidence that lateral sections are being steered within planned windows. We are pleased to have partnered with the Motive team in the early development of the product and have now adopted it as an integral part of our DD kit," said Topolinsky.

Dear user, please be aware that we use cookies to help users navigate our website content and to help us understand how we can improve the user experience. If you have ideas for how we can improve our services, we’d love to hear from you. Click here to email us. By continuing to browse you agree to our use of cookies. Please see our Privacy & Cookie Usage Policy to learn more.