BJ Services said Wednesday it plans to deploy a natural gas-fueled fracture fleet in the Haynesville Shale by the end of this year for Aethon Energy Management LLC.

Haynesville Natural Gas Prices

Under a four-year contract with the private equity firm, which has gas wells in the Haynesville, the Tomball, TX-based oilfield services provider plans to install its first Titan system, part of its next-generation fracturing fleet, in the gassy formation that straddles Texas and Louisiana.

“The launch of the Titan will allow us to make significant progress on our commitment to reducing carbon emissions, increasing operational efficiencies and improving the economics for our clients,” said BJ COO Caleb Barclay.

The fracture equipment “will prove to be a step-change to the impact it will have on the environment, efficiency and economics for Aethon’s operation.”

Powered by a 100% direct-drive gas-fueled turbine, the prototype pump since the start of this year has completed more than 500 hours of field testing on Aethon’s Haynesville well locations, BJ noted. The first Titan fleet is to deploy in 4Q2020.

The Titan provides up to 5,000 hp and “meets the most stringent noise reduction requirements across North America,” one of Aethon’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives.

“The natural gas-powered Titan fleet developed by BJ Services will deliver performance aligned with Aethon’s cost and ESG goals,” said Aethon COO Paul Sander. “Ultimately, larger pumps with fewer pumping units will reduce our footprint and result in structural cost savings for pumping services.”

Hydraulic fracturing in the oilfields continues to be done mostly using diesel-powered pumps, each around the size of an 18-wheeler, but electric pumps are making inroads. Electric pumps often are powered by natural gas that otherwise would be flared, which is shuttling to turbines that power electric motors.