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THE EMERGENCE OF THE DISCIPLINE OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERING: AN INTERNATIONAL COMPARISON

August W. Giebelhaus
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Vol. 2 (1996), pp. 108-122
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23790403
Page Count: 15
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
THE EMERGENCE OF THE DISCIPLINE OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERING: AN INTERNATIONAL COMPARISON
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Abstract

The worldwide petroleum industry had its beginnings in the United States in the mid-nineteenth century, but soon expanded into Russia in the 1870s and Asia and the Middle East soon after the turn of the century. Engineering practice with regard to the exploration, drilling, refining, and distribution of oil and its products was largely craft-based and ad hoc in the early years. It soon became apparent, however, that technical problems peculiar to this industry demanded more formal expertise. This paper explores the emergence of the formal discipline of petroleum engineering, concentrating on developments in the United States, Great Britain, and Russia. It discusses the role of leading proponents of petroleum technology, such as Henry L. Doherty in the United States and Sir John Cadman in Britain, the beginnings of academic curricula and programmes in petroleum engineering, and the creation of discrete organisations of petroleum engineers.

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