On September 13, 2011, China Petroleum Daily published an article titled '1,000 Horizontal Wells Support the Stable Production of 10Mt/y of Oil in CNPC Liaohe Oilfield' on the front-page. This marked a historical breakthrough in large-scale application of horizontal wells in Liaohe Oilfield. Rather than deliberately pursuing the cutting-edge technology, the development and application of horizontal well drilling technology was based on practical experience of oil & gas exploitation, predominantly lead by conventional horizontal well technology. The development and application of horizontal drilling technology also focused on solving the technological difficulties of multilateral and complex wells. Extensive efforts were made to develop sidetracked horizontal wells in the exploited zone. In the development and application process, ten major horizontal well drilling technologies with Liaohe’s characteristics were developed, which included MRC fishbone well, SAGD paired horizontal well, multilateral well, complex well, sidetracked horizontal well, and horizontal & underbalanced drilling integrated technologies. In addition to an overview of horizontal well drilling technologies with Liaohe's characteristics, the paper also presents achievements of industrial application of horizontal well technology in many areas, such as new block development, heavy oil development mode transformation, secondary development of old oilfields, evaluation and development of hard-to-recover reserves, progressive exploration etc.


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