Blowout Preventer

Definition - What does Blowout Preventer mean?

A Blowout Preventer is a valve used to quickly monitor, control and seal oil and gas wells. Also known as BOP or Ram blowout preventer, this valve works in a same way as a gate valve but it uses a Ram, which is usually a pair of opposing steel plungers. The Blowout Preventer restricts the flow by extending toward the center of a wellbore and allows flow by retracting outwards.

Petropedia explains Blowout Preventer

A Blowout Preventer (BOP) is used in oil wells to prevent a well blowout. It is also called as Ram Blowout Preventer. Rams are available in variable-bores so that a wide range of pipe diameter can get covered for sealing. There are four common types of Rams which are used in BOP's:

  • Pipe Ram– This doesn’t disturb the flow within the pipe, but it restricts the flow between the wellbore and outside of drill pipe.
  • Blind Ram– It used to close off a well when there is no drill string or tubing. It has no opening for the tubing.
  • Shear Ram– It uses the shearing technique to cut the hardened steel through the drill string.
  • Blind Shear Ram– It cuts through the drill string to seal a wellbore even when it is occupied by the string.

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