Process Engineering Term - B

BACK-IN-PROVISION - A term used to describe a provision in a farmout agreement whereby the person granting the farmout (the farmor) has the option to exchange a retained override for a share of the working interest.

BARREL - The standard unit of measure of liquids in the petroleum industry; it contains 42 U.S. standard gallons.

BARREL of Oil EQUIVALENT (BOE) - The amount of energy resource (in this document, natural gas) that is equal to one barrel of oil on an energy basis. The conversion is based on the assumption that one barrel of oil produces the same amount of energy when burned as 5,620 cubic feet of natural gas.

BASIN - A depression of the earth's surface into which sediments are deposited, usually characterized by sediment accumulation over a long interval; a broad area of the earth beneath which layers of rock are inclined, usually from the sides toward the center.

BASKET PRICE - The blanket or average price of crude oil on the world market. For example, the basket price of $18.00/bbl. could mean average price of average gravity. Lower-gravity crude with high-transit cost would bring less than $18.00, and conversely, higher gravity crude with low sulfur and close to market would be a premium - a basket of crude oils of differing gravities, sulfur content, sweet and sour.

BATTERY - Two or more tanks connected together to receive oil production on a lease; tank battery.

BED - A layer of rock, usually sediments, which is homogeneous (the same) in composition. One bed is separated from another by a bedding plane.

BEHIND THE PIPE - Refers to oil and gas reservoirs penetrated or passed through by wells, but never tapped or produced. Behind the pipe usually refers to tight formations of low permeability that, although recognized, were passed through because they were uneconomical to produce at the time. Today, however, with the growing scarcity of oil and high prices, many of these passed-through formations are getting a second look by producers.

B.H.T. - Bottom-hole temperature. In deep wells, 15,000 feet and deeper, bottom-hole temperatures are above the boiling point of water, ranging up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. At these depths and temperatures, water-base drilling muds can not be used, only oil-based.

BID - An offer for an OCS lease submitted by a potential lessee in the form of a cash bonus dollar amount or other commitments as specified in the final notice of sale.

BIOGENESIS - Formed by the presence or the actions of living organisms, for example, coral reefs and atolls. Biogenesis is also the theory that all life is derived from previously living organisms.

BIT, ROTARY - The tool attached to the lower end of the drillpipe; a heavy steel head equipped with various types of cutting or grinding teeth. Some are fixed; some turn on bearings. A hole in the bottom of the drill permits the flow of drilling mud being pumped down through the drillpipe to wash the cuttings to the surface and also cool and lubricate the bit.

BIT, SPUDDING - A bit used to start the borehole; a bit that is some variation of the fishtail or drag bit, one used in soft, unconsolidated, near-surface material.

BLINDPOOL - Money put into a drilling fund that is held by the fund managers until likely prospects for drilling are found or come along. The rationale for the blind fund is that with ready money, the fund managers can act quickly when good opportunities for investment arise. Blind fund money usually is kept in an interest-bearing account while waiting for a hot prospect.

BLOCK - A numbered area on an OCS leasing map or official protraction diagram (OPD). Blocks are portions of OCS leasing maps and OPD's that are themselves portions of planning areas. Blocks vary in size, but typical ones are 5,000 to 5,760 acres (about 9 square miles or 2,304 hectares). Each block has a specific identifying number, area, and latitude and longitude coordinates that can be pinpointed on a leasing map of OPD.

BLOWING A WELL - Opening a well to let it blow for a short period to free the well tubing or casing of accumulations of water, sand, or other deposits.

BLOWOUT - Out-of-control gas and/or oil pressure erupting from a well being drilled; a dangerous, uncontrolled eruption of gas and oil from a well; a wild well.

BLOWOUT PREVENTER - A stack or an assembly of heavy-duty valves attached to the top of the casing to control well pressure; a “Christmas tree”.

BONUS - Usually, the bonus is the money paid by the lessee for the execution of an oil and gas lease by the landowner. Another form is called an oil or royalty bonus. This may be in the form of an overriding royalty reserved to the landowner in addition to the usual one-eighth royalty.

BOREHOLE - The hole in the earth made by the drill; the uncased drill hole from the surface to the bottom of the well.

B.P.M. - Barrels per minute. The pumping rate of small rotary pumps.

BRIDGE PLUG - An expandable plug used in a well’s casing to isolate producing zones or to plug back to produce from a shallower formation; also to isolate a section of the borehole to be filled with cement when a well is plugged.

BUTANE - A hydrocarbon fraction; at ordinary atmospheric conditions, butane is a gas but it is easily liquefied; one of the most useful L.P.-gases; widely used household fuel.

BUTANE SPLITTER - A type of fractionator vessel at a gas reformer plant that produces commercial propane as well as normal and isobutanes. Splitters are fired with natural gas to provide heat for the distillation.

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