Horizontal Directional Drilling

Bakken Missouri River Crossing

Bakken Missouri River Crossing

Scope

Record-setting 2.5-mile horizontal directional drill   

The Bakken Missouri River Crossing Project connects an existing compressor station located in the Bakken shale oil fields in Williams County, North Dakota, to a natural gas gathering system located in McKenzie County, North Dakota.

To minimize disturbances to the area, Michels, one of the US’ largest directional drilling companies, collaboratively determined it was feasible to have a portion of the route cross beneath the Missouri River and the Lake Sakakawea Reservoir for approximately 2.5 miles using horizontal directional drilling (HDD) techniques.

The 13,247-foot (4,037-metre) drill allowed installation of a 20-inch pipe under the Missouri River. As one of the most trusted horizontal directional drilling contractors, our crew approached the 2.5-mile project by using the pilot-hole intersection method, which requires two rigs to drill simultaneously toward one another from both sides of the project and eventually meet near the middle. Gyroscopic guidance tools were used to stay precisely on the predetermined path. To minimize disturbances to the area, the bore path extended 268 feet below the bottom of the Lake Sakakawea Reservoir in the Missouri River.

The crossing was performed in late summer due to meeting the Environmental Permit requirement of no activity during the Dakota butterfly flight season. This pushed the start date into early September, putting the project up against a tight window for completion prior to the winter months, which could prove problematic for water-based drilling operations and pipeline testing procedures prior to pullback.

 Michels HDD contractors also assembled and handled the massive pipe string, which took 38 hours to pull into place in three sections.

Achievements


Click to watch the video our customer created of this record-breaking project.

  • The Bakken Missouri River Crossing Project connects an existing compressor station located in the Bakken shale oil fields in Williams County, North Dakota, to a natural gas gathering system located in McKenzie County, North Dakota.

  • To minimize disturbances to the area, Michels, one of the US' largest directional drilling companies, collaboratively determined it was feasible to have a portion of the route cross beneath the Missouri River and the Lake Sakakawea Reservoir for approximately 2.5 miles using horizontal directional drilling (HDD) techniques.
  • The 13,247-foot (4,037-metre) drill allowed installation of a 20-inch pipe under the Missouri River. As one of the most trusted horizontal directional drilling contractors, our crew approached the 2.5-mile project by using the pilot-hole intersection method, which requires two rigs to drill simultaneously toward one another from both sides of the project and eventually meet near the middle.
  • To minimize disturbances to the area, the bore path extended 268 feet below the bottom of the Lake Sakakawea Reservoir in the Missouri River.
  • Michels HDD contractors also assembled and handled the massive pipe string, which took 38 hours to pull into place in three sections.
  • This project set the world record for longest length drill in the 2.5-mile horizontal directional drill.
  • Michels helped provide our customer with a delivery outlet for the previously untapped energy resource in the area.
  • Michels crews skillfully completed something unprecedented while minimizing disturbances to the area.
  • The new facilities will now capture approximately 180 to 240 million cubic feet per day of natural gas, preventing it from otherwise flaring into the atmosphere.

Projects

Horizontal Directional Drilling

Naval Facilities Engineering Command - Ford Island

Hawaii

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Naval Facilities Engineering Command - Ford Island

Michels completed a complex design-build construction project for the Jacksonville Electric Authority performing horizontal directional drilling (HDD), reaming and pullback operations for a 36" steel water main that spanned 6,575'.

Horizontal Directional Drilling

St. John's River Crossing Design Build

Florida

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St. John's River Crossing Design Build

Horizontal Directional Drilling

Nexus Gas Transmission Pipeline

Michigan & Ohio

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Nexus Gas Transmission Pipeline

Michels installed a 4,000-foot land-to-land and a 1,600-foot water-to-land installation of 16-inch pipe.

Horizontal Directional Drilling

Salem Lateral

Massachusetts

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Salem Lateral

Michels trenchlessly installed 1,500 feet of 24-inch natural gas pipeline under a highway, creek and pond in a residential neighborhood.

Horizontal Directional Drilling

North Branch Pipe Replacement

Minnesota

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North Branch Pipe Replacement

Michels completed a record setting horizontal directional drill (HDD) installation of an 18-inch diameter steel gas pipeline of 12,459 feet.

Horizontal Directional Drilling

Houston Ship Channel

Texas

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Houston Ship Channel

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