02 February 2016
The team at Petroleum identified and implemented a new way to construct well pads that significantly improves safety without sacrificing cost or quality.
In the past, each new well site required around 500 truckloads of limestone rock for reinforcement. These trucks travelled great distances, over both public and private roads, and the potential interaction presented significant potential safety risks to road users.
The new pad design involves injecting slurry made of recycled fly ash and cement into the sandy, clay soil. This eliminates more than 80 per cent of the truck loads of rock that were previously required.
By removing over 400 trucks from the road, the team reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 7,500 tonnes, reduced driving distance by over 6.7 million kilometres and reduced construction time by three to five days. The new design creates an impermeable surface that reduces the risk of spills and simplifies the reclamation process. Without the loads of rock to remove, risks around mobile equipment and vehicle traffic are reduced, and the pad can simply be tilled and returned to its natural state.