Spotlight on technology: Making big rigs lighter

Trinidad Drilling's Rig 56 in Western Canada.
Trinidad Drilling’s Rig 56

When people think of engineering marvels, they usually think of bridges and dams. Drilling rigs may not be as visible to the public, but achievements in the design and manufacturing of these machines deserve some of the accolades, too.

For example, the engineering team at Trinidad Design & Manufacturing is finding ways to slim down large-capacity rigs by using lighter, but stronger, construction materials in our masts.

“As we go forward, drilling processes are getting more complicated – there is more equipment and bigger equipment involved,” explained Darren Self, one of Trinidad’s Mechanical Design Engineers. “As you start adding more equipment to existing rig designs, space becomes an issue.” Continue reading

Captain Kirk has nothing on this Driller

Trinidad Drilling's Rig 58 in Nisku, Alberta.Shawn McVey’s favourite part of the job is working with technology. So, the fact that he’s a Driller on one of our newest, most advanced rigs is a good fit. Trinidad Rig 58 boasts everything from fully integrated control systems, to its own water purification building, to an enclosed drill floor, to a moving system that allows its backyard to be moved with its centerpiece.

And for McVey, drilling controls are located on a cyber chair that looks like it would be at home on the bridge of the Starship Enterprise.

“Trinidad has given me the training and opportunities to work with the kind of advanced technology that most rig hands don’t get to work with their entire career,” said McVey, who started with Trinidad three years ago on Rig 57, a sophisticated machine in its own right.

We published other blog posts about Rig 58 while it was being built, but it’s been a few months since the nearly 60-metre-tall rig hit the field to drill natural gas in the Liard Basin in northern B.C., so now we want to give you a look at what it’s like to be at the helm of one of the largest rigs in North America.  Continue reading

Spotlight on technology: Rigs that can really move

Trinidad Rig 58 being built in Nisku, Alta.
Trinidad Rig 58 being built in Nisku, Alta.

Our “Spotlight on technology” blog series is all about innovations that are improving the way we drill oil and gas wells, but this post isn’t so much about what happens while drilling as what happens in-between wells. We’re talking about rig moving systems.

“Moving systems are continually increasing in functionality, ease of use and scope of application,” said Darren Self, a Design Engineer with Trinidad Design & Manufacturing.

Self walked us through some of what’s new with moving systems built for multi-well pad drilling. Continue reading

5 things that make Trinidad Drilling rigs stand out

Trinidad Rig 58Trinidad’s rigs stand out. Literally. Trinidad Rig 58, pictured here, is nearly 60-metres high and is one of the largest rigs in North America. But our strength as a drilling contractor is not just about size. It’s about the performance of our rigs in the field.

Jeff Mitton, a Contracts Manager with Trinidad’s Canadian division, helped explain five reasons why Trinidad’s rigs stand out for the crews who work on them and for the customers who work with them. Continue reading

Trinidad Drilling

4 ways top drives make rigs safer

This is the final post in Trinidad’s three-part series on top drives. 

Over the last two weeks, we’ve been talking about how top drive technology works and the way it’s changed drilling by making rigs more efficient and allowing operators to reach more sophisticated drilling targets.

This week, we want to talk about one of the most important benefits of top drives: improved safety. Here are four ways top drives are making rig work safer. Continue reading

5 ways top drives have revolutionized drilling

Trinidad Drilling rigThis is the second post in Trinidad’s three-part series on top drives. 

A game changer. It’s someone or something that comes along and alters the status quo. Like Wayne Gretzky for hockey, Peyton Manning for football, Tiger Woods for golf and the top drive for drilling.

Brent Kryzanowski, General Manager, Canadian Operations and Top Drive expert for Trinidad’s Canadian fleet, started as a Motorhand with Trinidad in 1996. He’s seen, first hand, how the industry has been “revolutionized” by top drive technology. (Pun intended.)

“Drilling with a top drive allows operators to reach areas and milestones in measured depths of horizontal wells that would not be accessible with conventional rotary drilling,” explained Kryzanowski.

Here are five ways top drives improve efficiency and allow drilling contractors to “go boldly where they’ve never gone before.” Continue reading

Spotlight on technology: The way a top drive works

This is the first post in Trinidad’s three-part series on top drives. 

Trinidad top driveThere is no question that top drives have changed the drilling industry. They have made rigs safer and more efficient. Plus, the technology allows us to reach drilling targets that were once considered unreachable.

“The top drive drilling system is one of the most significant advancements in drilling technology,” said Brent Kryzanowski, General Manager, Canadian Operations and the Top Drive expert for Trinidad’s Canadian fleet.

In this post, Kryzanowski explains how the game-changing innovation works. Continue reading

What’s your oil field perspective?

Mexico 506Trinidad just had an anniversary. We’ve been on social media for over a year! During this time, we’ve connected with a lot of hard-working people in the oil and gas industry from around the world. We love receiving your photos of rigs in the field, answering your questions about work in the drilling industry and learning your perspective on oil field life.

That’s why we decided this blog post would be all about you. You’ve read our viewpoint on safety, technology and careers in the oil patch. Now it’s time to feature your voice. We scrolled through our Twitter feed, scoured our LinkedIn page and searched our Facebook comments to find some of your ideas on these important topics. Continue reading

The top 3 ways Trinidad is minimizing its environmental footprint

Our crews are outside every day. We work alongside stunning natural surroundings, and that is why we are keenly aware that Trinidad, like all companies, has a responsibility to minimize our impact on the environment.

Here are three ways we are doing that:

DSCN01951. Preventing drilling fluid leaks

Rigs use drilling fluid (or “mud”) to control pressure and stabilize the hole while drilling. We are working to make sure fluids don’t leak near the drilling site by engineering containment solutions where spills are likely to occur from the top drive to the mud tank. If a leak does occur, Trinidad has policies in place to safely deal with the incident.

“Newer rigs have built in vacuum services to quickly recover spilled fluids,” explained Darryl Hostyn, HSE Manager for Trinidad’s Canadian drilling division.

We also ensure our equipment is well maintained, which helps to prevent leaks. Continue reading