Steel Usage in Drilling and Exploration

Posted on November 30, 2012 by admin

The oil and gas industry has surged over the past couple of years in order to compensate with the growing demand of consumption. Along with the boom of oil and gas is also the resurgence of the steel industry. Tubular goods to be used in drilling rigs, pipes, joints, and tubes has made oil and gas exploration much easier.

Since most technological tools for exploration and drilling are made of steel, production of tubular goods has increased by numbers each year. In fact, the American Iron and Steel Institute reported that a steel manufacturer in the US broke an all-time sales record last year with a staggering production of 19.2 million metric tons of steel, all for the drilling industry.

With the fact that the drilling industry and steel go together, it is undeniable why many steelmakers strive to become one of the best steel manufacturers. The innovation of the core drilling method must be backed up with a quality steel manufacturer, the reason why National Specialty Alloys (NSA) makes sure that their line of steel products are quality made, ISO certified, and efficiently delivered.

NSA provides different kinds of steel alloys to be used in industries such as:

  • Water filtration
  • Marine
  • Mixing
  • Pulp and paper
  • Food processing
  • Drilling
  • Chemical; and
  • Pump

Why Steel is Used in the Oil and Gas Industry

Steel is used for the construction of heavy machinery utilized in drilling because it resists oxidation, mainly due to the chromium content. When steel is exposed to oxygen, a chromium oxide film acts as a protective layer. This is also the reason why steel appears shiny.

The metal underneath the steel alloy is protected from water and heat, and even if the surface acquires a scratch, the chromium oxide layer will eventually reform it. Apart from chromium, there are a number of elements which can be alloyed such as:

  • Silicon
  • Titanium
  • Tungsten
  • Nickel
  • Copper
  • Aluminum
  • Nitrogen

The reason why some elements are alloyed is in order to enhance the physical, mechanical and corrosion properties of a specific type of steel.

Oil and Gas Tools

Seamless steel tubes are used in downhole drill motors, sand screens, and perforating guns. Most steelmakers see to it that their products are high resistant in order to yield strength and be able to tolerate tight dimensions.

Tools which are used for drilling and exploration should be able to bear heavy loads, withstand harsh weather and work at high operating speeds. For this reason, an oil and gas drilling company should have a steady and trusted supplier of steel, one which can assure them of providing high quality products such as NSA.


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