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This case study presents a head-to-head comparison of eight wells broken into two sets of four, each drilled in the Eagle Ford basin in Southern Texas. One set of four wells were guided by the MOTIVE® Bit Guidance system while the other set of four wells were drilled without using the system.
These eight wells were drilled within one mile of one another at approximately the same time with nearly identical lithologies, well path geometries, drill bit, BHAs, and other associated rig equipment.
Furthermore, the MOTIVE®-guided wells had somewhat more complex well geometries and longer laterals (~5300 lateral feet for the non-MOTIVE® wells vs ~6600 lateral feet for the MOTIVE®-guided wells).

The results demonstrated the compelling benefits of the Bit Guidance System used on the MOTIVE®-guided wells vs the non-MOTIVE® wells

    • 30% lower effective directional drilling cost
      vs the lowest-priced traditional mud motor option, due to reduced drilling time
    • Nearly twice the accuracy

      over traditional mud motors, staying within 5 feet of the well plan 79% percent of the time compared to 44% for the non-MOTIVE® wells.  This leads to increased hydrocarbon production potential.

    • Zero non-productive time (NPT)

      due to MWD or mud motor failures, compared to 13% MWD or mud motor-related NPT on the non-MOTIVE® wells

  • Lowest Footage Cost

    MOTIVE® achieved a 15% reduction in drilling time, despite the increased complexity and length of the laterals. The effective improvements were seen in all well sections in this study:

    12 ¼” Vertical Section

    (11.4% Improvement)

    8½” Vertical Section

    (32.4% Improvement)

    8½” Curve Section

    (38.4% Improvement)

    12 ¼” 8½” Lateral Section

    (7% Improvement) **

    ** The 7% improvement in the lateral section occurred despite the MOTIVE® wells having a 24% longer lateral section, with this additional lateral length being the toughest section to drill.

This reduction in drilling time saved an average of 28 hours on each of the MOTIVE®-guided wells (equating to an average spread cost savings of over $70k per well).

Nearly Twice the Accuracy

In addition to the cost savings, the MOTIVE®-guided wells had roughly twice the accuracy in the ability to follow the well plan, compared to the non-MOTIVE® guided wells (within five feet of plan 79% of the time, versus only 44% for the non-MOTIVE® guided wells). The non-MOTIVE® wells were also outside of 10 feet from plan 12% of the time, compared to less than 1% for the MOTIVE® wells. The data clearly demonstrates that MOTIVE® technology facilitates greater productivity over the life of the well.

Other Benefits

Less Tortuousity, Less Non-Productive Time, Record Performance

The MOTIVE® wells were less tortuous, due to the ability to better predict the bit location between surveys and requiring less adjustment at each survey station.   This reduces the risk of future casing running or production problems.

Two other benefits gained from using the MOTIVE® Bit Guidance system are very significant but more difficult to quantify with precision. The first is the avoidance of catastrophic directional drilling mistakes. By using machine intelligence to continuously predict the bit position, by validating the prediction at each survey station, and by promoting remote collaboration, directional driller errors are uncovered and corrected much sooner.   The MOTIVE® Bit Guidance system continuously analyzes millions of steering options at each survey point based on cost. One of the factors in this Guidance System real-time analysis is the cost related to the reduced hydrocarbon recovery factor as a result of drilling away from the target defined by geologists, geophysicists, and reservoir engineers.  The cost of lost production potential is balanced against the costs associated with drilling time and the costs associated with tortuosity risk in every directional drilling steering decision performed by the system.    Increased production potential as a result of improved accuracy can easily dwarf all of the other cost savings proven and documented in this study.


In this head-to-head comparison, the MOTIVE®-guided wells significantly outperformed the non-MOTIVE® wells in each of the sections drilled. Overall, the MOTIVE® wells were more accurate, less tortuous, and with a lower effective directional drilling cost per foot by 30% (without including the benefits of lower NPT). On an average well length of 17,000 feet, this equates to a savings of approximately $70,000 per well.
Thanks for learning about MOTIVE® Drilling Technologies!

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Phone: 469.729.6470