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An oil producer in the Permian Basin of west Texas, USA, contacted Baker Hughes, a GE company (BHGE), to help provide a solution that would reduce the amount of time spent in drilling curve and lateral hole sections. The wells in this area typically require a steerable motor with a high-adjustable kick-off (AKO) setting to achieve the build-up rate (BUR) necessary to drill the curve section. However, a high AKO setting can compromise the rate-of-penetration (ROP) in the lateral section. 

The BHGE team recommended their new Navi-Drill™ DuraMax™ steerable drilling motor to improve performance and reduce the number of trips made for new motors and bits through the curve and lateral sections. The ruggedized DuraMax motors, with a shorter bit-to- bend, successfully drilled the high BUR curve section. The rugged motor design also enabled the operator to rotate the drill sting at a higher RPM and a high weight-on-bit (WOB), compared to offset runs, and delivered optimized performance in the lateral section.

Download the PDF to read the full case study.

Challenges & Results


  • Drilling curve and lateral holes


  • 114 ft/hr Average ROP
  • 3,127 ft/day Drilled lateral
  • 30% Improvement in ROP