Petroleum Engineers Job Description video

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The world’s demand for oil and natural gas is unceasing. To find new supplies of these vital resources, we depend on petroleum engineers. They search the world for reservoirs containing oil or natural gas, and work with geologists and other specialists to extract it. This is not a simple matter of plunging a drill into the ground. First, the team develops a map of the underground, and devises a drilling method, designing equipment and processes for that particular target—whether it be under a mountain, under a desert, or under the ocean. To get the most from each reservoir, petroleum engineers also develop enhanced recovery methods, such as injecting water, steam, chemicals, or gases into the reservoir to force out the oil and natural gas. Computer modeling is often used to explore drilling and extraction options and techniques. This is work that requires a combination of complex knowledge with a willingness to travel. The work takes you where oil and gas is found…from America’s west and southwest, overseas to the Middle East…and up to the frozen north. You might work for a major oil company, a government agency or a small consulting outfit. To begin with, you’ll need creative and practical problem solving skills, and the patience to work with a team on highly detailed plans. A bachelor’s degree in engineering is generally required. Two or four year technology programs may lead to similar jobs, but the individual can’t register as a professional engineer under the same terms as graduates with a degree in engineering.

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