Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping Page: 108
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108 SURFACE MACHINERY AND METHODS FOR OIL-WELL PUMPING.
fields of Texas, Kansas, and Oklahoma. During the past 6 or 7
years electrification of the oil fields has progressed rapidly, especially
in the newer and larger fields. California, Texas, Louisiana, Okla-
homa, and Kansas oil fields use much electrical machinery.
SOURCE AND DISTRIBUTION OF ELECTRIC POWER.
Electric power is either generated in the oil field or bought from
a power company. It is generated in the field only when generation
is cheaper than purchase. When power can not be bought, a
private plant is generally built, if the power demand is large and
permanent enough to warrant the cost, otherwise steam or gas
engines are used.
The power company's charges are generally based on high-voltage
current delivered to the oil company's primary distributing station,
which is also the metering station for the power company. Many
of the oil companies of California pay from 1.4 to 1.1 cents a kilo-
watt, the former rate being for a minimum daily demand of 125 kw.
from one metering station.
From the primary station of the oil company the current is carried
for secondary distribution to banks of transformers owned by the
oil company and advantageously located with regard to the wells to
be pumped. Here the power is stepped down and supplied to 6 or 10
wells within suitable radius to be pumped on the beam, or to a cen-
tral " power " or jack plant pumping a group of wells, or to motors
for other power needs. The more scattered the wells or groups of
wells on the property the longer are the primary distributing lines
required and the greater the number of banks of transformers for
Plate XXVII, B, (p. 111), shows a bank of transformers between
the primary and secondary distributing lines of an oil company that
uses electricity for all power needs in the Coalinga field, California.
Power is distributed from these transformers to a group of wells
being pumped on the beam.
If the power requirements of the oil company are small, or if the
wells to be served are compactly grouped, primary lines for distri-
bution may not be needed, as one bank of transformers at the meter-
ing station may suffice.
The distance the power is to be transmitted determines the voltage
to be used. If the generating plants are near the place of consump-
tion 2,200 volts is usually enough. Power companies generally use
much higher voltage when the transmission lines are long.
One company using electric power extensively in the Kansas oil
fields buys its power at 60,000 volts and transforms it to 11,000 volts
at its main distributing station, using a bank of transformers of 3,000
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George, H. C. Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping, report, 1925; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12407/m1/137/: accessed May 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.