High torque top drives at Trinidad Drilling

Torquin’-up top drives at Trinidad

We’re always looking for innovative approaches to tackle our customers’ toughest drilling programs. Most recently, our Canadian sales and marketing group teamed up with Trinidad’s top drive expert, Brent Kryzanowski, General Manager, Canadian Operations, to come up with a top drive plan a little out of the ordinary.

“Our customer’s drilling program needed a top drive that could handle continuous 30,000 ft-lbs and 160 RPM to power through a tough formation,” explained Kryzanowski. “So we decided to upgrade a top drive with National Oilwell Varco that has worked really well for us.”

Let’s sort out the lingo

If you’re new to motors or the industry, Kryzanowski likely lost you at “30,000 ft-lbs”. Not to worry – we’ll break it down. Continue reading

Spotlight on technology: how automated pipe-handling systems are making the Derrickhand’s job safer

Trinidad Drilling Rig 58

A Derrickhand stands on a rig 90 feet up into the sky. From there, he aligns pipes and directs them from the racking board fingers to the top drive, and vice versa.

The work is intensely physical, and there are always safety concerns, as well.

That’s why Trinidad Drilling is moving to an automated pipe-handling system on the derrick. It’s an exciting new development, both for safety and efficiency, and Trinidad has been testing it for about a year.

With the new system, the Derrickhand is comfortably inside the doghouse, instead of up on the monkeyboard. Instead of manually handling the pipes, he’s controlling them with a machine that carries out multiple functions automatically.

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

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

Trinidad Rig 58

Trinidad Rig 58: A rig you’ll want to work on

At almost 58-metres high, Trinidad Rig 58 is one of the largest rigs in North America. And it’s not only imposing. It’s impressive. The 1,250-kip* rig is loaded with the most technically advanced drilling equipment in the business.

“It’s overwhelming to see the effort of so many produce a rig of this magnitude, with all of its bells and whistles.” – John Glunz, Rig Manager.

“I am honoured to be a part of a project of such technical focus,” said John Glunz, one of the Rig Managers who’ll be in charge of Rig 58. “It’s overwhelming to see the effort of so many produce a rig of this magnitude, with all of its bells and whistles.”

Rig 58, one of Trinidad’s newest rigs, is being built to reach depths over 8,000 metres and will drill natural gas in the Liard Basin, an area being developed to supply proposed LNG (liquefied natural gas) plants on the west coast of British Columbia.

Trinidad Rig 58 - 3

“This rig will attract some elite work in the drilling field. Its size and capabilities are second to none,” said Glunz, who has been in the drilling business for 26 years, 16 of those as a Rig Manager. “I don’t foresee a big turnover in rig workers, as the rig design and long term steady work are a huge attraction.” Continue reading

Spotlight on technology: How integrated control systems are changing drilling

Trinidad Drilling, driller

Advances in technology are changing the way crews work on drilling rigs.

At Trinidad, we are using integrated control systems to give Drillers the ability to control equipment from one main system in the safety of the cabin.

“New technologies will improve the safety of the rig crew by keeping them out of the way of dangerous equipment when possible,” explained Joel Hamonic, a Technical Coordinator with Trinidad Design & Manufacturing. Continue reading