Finding OilAs of 2010, no method has proven 100 percent effective in helping geologists locate crude oil deposits. The best, and most profitable, technique oil hunters have is seismic exploration. In seismic exploration, a satellite or mobile seismic device shoots radio waves at prospective crude oil sites and then sends that data to a supercomputer which creates a digital model of the environment based on that data, according to oil producer Exxon Mobil.
DrillingPumping crude oil out of the ground through a pipe has remained the basic idea behind crude oil extraction since the earliest drill sites. However, while the first drilling technique stuck a pipe straight into the ground, modern drillers now have slant drilling techniques. In general, slant drilling proves much more beneficial than vertical drilling. Slanted pumps are curved, allowing them to rotate 360 degrees and reach several different deposits from the same location.
Oil extraction also occurs at sea using the same methods as land-based oil extraction, but requires special types of platforms because the ocean floor may not support the weight of a normal rig or the size of a solid platform proves to costly to reach ocean depths. Most offshore operations tether a floating platform connected to cables attached to the ocean floor. Those drilling in shallow water or those who have found a large deposit might want to install a permanent structure. Movable rigs, such a ship or a barge, are good for finding oil deposits and gathering oil from several smaller sites.