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Glossary of Industry Terms

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Heavy Oil

Oil having an API specific gravity less than 22.3ยบ. It includes some oil that will flow, albeit slowly, but most heavy oil requires heat or dilution to flow to a well or through a pipeline.

 

Horizontal Drilling

Drilling horizontally through a reservoir to increase the area of the well in the formation.

 

Horizontal Laterals

A set of horizontal drainage wells branching off from a horizontal wellbore.

 

Hot Water Process

A method for separating bitumen from oil sand using hot water and caustic soda.

Hydrocarbons

A large class of liquid, solid or gaseous organic compounds, containing only carbon and hydrogen comprising the basis of almost all petroleum products.

 

Hydrocracking ( Refining )

A refining process which adds hydrogen to the carbon-rich molecules of heavier oil, in the presence of a catalyst, to produce a higher yield of gasoline and diesel fuel.

 

Hydrocracking ( Upgrading )

A process in which bitumen is heated and hydrogen is added under high pressure to break down large hydrocarbon molecules into simpler, smaller compounds.

Hydrogen Sulphide ( H2S )

A naturally occurring, highly toxic gas with the odour of rotten eggs.

 

Hydrotransport

A process that uses hot water to transport oil sands excavated at oil sands mining projects through a pipeline to a processing plant.

 

Hydrotreating

The process of adding hydrogen to heavy oil or bitumen molecules during the upgrading process.