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Alberta's Petroleum Heritage Edukithome


Did You Know?



Did You Know?

By now you may have noticed there is a lot to learn about Alberta's Petroleum Heritage and you probably have a lot of questions! With help from the Canadian Petroleum Interpretive Centre, we have put together a short "FAQ" sheet to help you answer some of those questions that you can print off.

Frequently Asked Questions – Leduc #1

What Company drilled the Leduc # 1 Well?

 • Imperial Oil was the company that drilled the Leduc #1 well. In 1946, a year before the Leduc oil discovery, Imperial drilled 133 dry holes looking for oil in Alberta and Saskatchewan

How high was the original Leduc # 1 derrick?

• The height of the Leduc # 1 well was 44.20 metres

What was the total depth of the Leduc #1 well?

• The depth of the Leduc # 1 well was 4592.12 metres

How long did the Leduc # 1 well produce?

• The Leduc # 1 well produced from 1947 to 1974

How much did the Leduc # 1 produce?

The Leduc # 1 well produced the following amounts:

 • 318,000 barrels of oil
 • 324,000 MCF natural gas
 • 9,000 barrels of water

How big is the Leduc/Woodbend field?

 • The Leduc/Woodbend field was approximately 25.75 km by 8.05 km

How many wells have been drilled in the Leduc/Woodbend field?

 • Over 1,000 wells have been drilled in the area

What is the average oil production of one well in the Leduc/Woodbend field?

The average production of one well was:

 • Initial Production: 500 barrels/day
 • Production at Peak: 150 – 200 barrels/day
 • Present Production: 20 barrels/day
 • Total Production to date: Over 300 million barrels

How long did it take to dismantle and reassemble conventional rigs?

• On average it took, 3 days to dismantle, and 3 ½ days to reassemble

How deep are wells drilled?

• The deepest well ever drilled was over 9.45 km. In this area, wells average 1.5 to 1.7 kilometres

How long is the surface casing?

• In Alberta, it must span 10 percent of the total well depth

On average, how big are the pipes that carry oil?

The pipes that carry oil are:

• From wellhead to battery: 5 to 8 cm

• From battery to refinery: 15 to 20 cm
• Major pipelines: 91 to 107 cm

Why are there different sized drilling bits?

• Bit size is dependent on well depth as well as the number of casings (steel pipe) that one uses

How many people work on an offshore rig?

 • On average, 60-180 people work on an offshore rig

How high is the conventional derrick here at the Leduc #1 Site?

• The derrick is 52.12 metres high

Where is the Leduc #1 well located at the Canadian Petroleum Interpretive Center?

• It is covered by the black pump jack under the grey service rig on the south side of the site

What is a “roughneck?”

• A roughneck is a worker of an oil-well-drilling crew other than the driller. They handle a variety of jobs around the rig

 What type of town was Leduc before it became an “oil town”?

•One of the best diversified farming districts of Alberta, Leduc was primarily a service center for the surrounding agricultural area

Who is Vern Hunter?

• Vern (“Dry Hole”) Hunter became known for his lack of success in drilling for oil. He was the head driller of many of the 133 dry holes Imperial drilled prior to his discovery of the Leduc well

How did Alberta spend it’s oil revenue?

• The provincial government began an aggressive infrastructure program with its oil revenue. By early 1956, the government completed many kilometres of paved and multi-lane highways, paved shoulders and several bridges

How did oil change Alberta?

• The oil boom changed Alberta forever. Farmers became oilmen by receiving royalties from the oil companies who explored on their land. Alberta experienced new service industries, increased housing developments, numerous construction projects, population increase, an initiation of large public works projects and increased revenue

Why was Devon called a Model Town?

 • The term
Model Town describes towns planned by a regional planning commission. Devon was the first community in Canada planned in this way.

 How did the town of Devon get it’s name?

• Devon is named after the Devonian reefs that were formed when Alberta was a marine environment some 400 million years ago. Petroleum is often found buried in these reefs

What is the importance of Turner Valley?

• Turner Valley was the first petroleum production facility in western Canada and became the training ground for the oil and gas industry. It achieved a number of “firsts” in Canadian gas processing and served as a center for training Canadians and the world for future work in exploration, production and processing

What is Hell’s Half Acre?

• It was a small ravine in Turner Valley. The oil field produced flares of natural gas; a by-product created after producing oil. Because of the presence of the flares, the grass stayed green year-round, local hunters hunted with the artificial light and migrating birds wintered in their warmth.

This FAQ was developed in part by the Canadian Petroleum Interpretive Centre.

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