Frac sand gets its name from its use in hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”), a completion method used by oil and natural gas companies to produce natural gas, natural gas liquids, and oil from unconventional, low permeability reservoirs such as shale. Basins with high frac sand demand include the Permian Basin, Eagle Ford Shale, the Mid-Continent, Bakken Shale, Marcellus Shale, Utica Shale, and Haynesville Shale.
Here’s a brief description of what frac sand is and how it’s used by the oil and gas industry.
What’s in Frac Sand?
Frac sand is a naturally occurring crystalline silica (quartz) sand that is processed from high-purity sandstone. In its make-up, frac sand differs only slightly from other types of sand, as grains of quartz silica are a major constituent of most inter-coastal sands. The difference is that other sand is a mixture of several minerals and rocks types, which are less durable than quartz.
Frac sand grains are unique in their resistance to being crushed, as well as their very round granule shape. This makes them ideal for use in the process of fracking.