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Baker Hughes converts fracking units to bifuel pumps

29th November 2012

Baker Hughes converts fleet of hydraulic fracturing units to bifuel pumps which replace diesel fuel with cleaner natural gas

Baker Hughes converts fracking units to bifuel pumps
The new pumps reduce diesel use by up to 65 per cent whilst maintaining hydraulic horsepower

Texas-based oilfield services company Baker Hughes this week announced that it has converted a fleet of hydraulic fracturing units to bifuel pumps compatible with natural gas, in order to increase the cost efficiency of operations and reduce the environmental risk of unconventional oil and gas extraction.

Baker Hughes subsidiary Baker Hughes Oilfield Operations has converted a fleet of Rhino hydraulic fracturing units to bifuel pumps, the company said in a statement on Monday. The new pumps are powered by natural gas and diesel, reducing diesel use by up to 65 per cent whilst maintaining hydraulic horsepower, Baker Hughes claims. The converted fleet can also reduce nitrogen oxide, carbon dioxide and particulate matter emissions.

The conversion was made following successful results from a similar initiative by the oilfield service company in Canada. Baker Hughes is in the process of converting several more fleets of Rhino trucks for bifuel usage. The firm is following the ranks of a number of oil and gas operators in the Marcellus Shale which have converted several drilling rigs to support natural gas as a fuel.

"Baker Hughes has seen excellent results with this initiative," said Mike Davis, Baker Hughes' president of Pressure Pumping for US land. "The environmental benefits are significant. We're reducing emissions from the engines driving the stimulation pumps and less fuel is needed to keep our pumps going.  In addition, this has the added value of improving job site safety by eliminating re-fueling demands during operations."

Baker Hughes’s new Rhino units were recently used in a hydraulic fracturing job in the Eagle Ford Shale for energy firm Cheyenne Petroleum Company. The company claims the 65 per cent cut in diesel fuel consumption can help the oil company achieve significant cost reductions

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