Successfully extracting oil reserves requires a coordinated team effort of skilled professionals who bring their specialties together to steward a project from inception through completion.
Once the prospect has been identified and the lease has been secured; it is time to begin. The operator drills the well and if warranted completes the well and oversees all production operations including maintenance of the leased property. Operators are responsible for all record-keeping, payment of bills, and communicate regularly with owners providing daily drilling reports.
Finding buried treasure is nearly impossible unless you know where to look. The geologist applies experience, knowledge, and modern science in order to interpret a vast amount of raw data as a way to identify and evaluate the viability of potential drilling sites.
After a geologist identifies a high-potential location, securing permission to drill falls to the landman, who negotiates the right to drill with each property owner, who controls the surface, airspace, and minerals below (referred to as mineral rights).
Once the well has been drilled to depth, the petroleum engineer, working closely with the geologist, will determine the production potential of the project by analyzing well logs, pressures, and production test data. A review of scientific data and test results will determine if the well will be completed. If so, surface equipment is moved to the location and production begins.