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Understanding Oil & Gas Terminology

If your new to the Oil and Gas industry or considering a career in the energy sector. This blog will help you understand some of the Oil and Gas industry’s terminology. Some of the words my appear unusual to start with, but we’ve put together some of the terminology used whilst working offshore across the globe.

Hitch - Rig employees define their working time as a ‘Hitch’.

Bell Nipple – A pipe guiding the drilling tools into the top of the well. Big Bear – A hitch that lasts at least 50 days.

Blowout – The flow of gas and oil from a well occurs uncontrollably if the system fails, where the well can shoot up to 200 feet in the air.

Blow-out Preventer - A specific mechanical tool preventing blow-outs, to monitor and manage the well pressures with drilling oil and gas.

Ginsel – An employee with no oilfield experience and is considered the bottom of the pecking order.

Oil platform in middle of sea at sunset

Mule Shoe – Is a small pipe that is attached to a drill string, to get rid of sand and mud from the drill string. Monkey Board – The platform that the derrickman stands on when tripping the pipe.

SlurryA mix of solids and liquids.

BTU - Stands for ‘British thermal unit’ which is a measurement unit of the heating system of the fuel.

Fishing - Recovering pieces from the borehole, such as a broken drill string or tools.

Riser - A pipe between a seabed BOP and a floating drilling rig.

Riser - The division of pipework that connects a seabed wellhead to the Christmas tree.

Offshore Jack Up Drilling Rig Over The Production Platform in The Middle of The Sea

Trap - A geological obstacle to the upward movement of oil/gas.

Upstream - This term belongs to practices in the oil and gas industry, such as exploration and production - near supply.

This is our favourite selection of the oil industry jargon, but we know there are lots more. In the case we have missed some, please let us know your favourites - we’d love to hear them.

MAC Recruit Group has helped thousands of our candidates in the energy sector to find suitable jobs. If you are looking to take the next step in your career, send us your CV at

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