The Oilfield Technology Group (OTG) of Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc., Houston, has reported the startup of a new manufacturing plant in Batesville, Ark., to provide additional resin-coated proppants to fracturing service companies and operators in the oil and gas industry.

“We continue to add needed capacity to satisfy our customers’ demand for specialty proppants for the growing horizontal fracturing market. The addition of this facility to our current manufacturing grid will enable us to ensure an ongoing and secure supply of specialty proppants for the industry,” said Jerry Borges, vice president, OTG.

The Batesville plant is the second addition to the OTG manufacturing grid in 2011. The business expanded its plant in Cleburne, Texas, earlier this year and has incremental expansions in process at other facilities. It now operates a total of six manufacturing plants with multiple production lines and 14 transload facilities serving the U.S. and Canadian markets.

The new Batesville facility will manufacture OTG’s newest addition to its product line, called Black Pro proppant, which offers next-generation resin-bonding technology.

“We continue to develop new products to address the shale exploration requirements in North America,” Borges said.  “Black Pro proppant is another addition to our line of curable products that provides flowback control for our customers in the numerous frac treatments in the horizontal sections. The benefits of curable resin-coated proppants have helped our customers maintain clean wellbores when producing these prolific wells,” Borges said.

Black Pro proppant improves proppant pack integrity, even under the harshest cyclic stress conditions common in today's shale wells. This proppant also provides enhanced proppant embedment resistance under cyclic stress, maintaining higher pack permeability and fracture width compared to traditional curable resin-coated proppants. Their quicker bond strength development allows for faster post-treatment flowback at higher drawdowns than other resin-coated proppants.

Resin-coated proppants are used in the hydraulic fracturing process to help optimize production from oil and gas wells by maximizing fracture flow capacity from the reservoir to the wellbore. Technological innovations and Momentive’s introduction of enhanced materials have expanded the use of resin-coated proppants into unconventional reservoirs that feature complex and challenging geological formations.