While studying mechanical engineering at the University of Oklahoma, the opportunity of a lifetime fell into Caleb Atchley’s lap. When oil and natural gas producer, Greg Hall, went to his alma mater’s fraternity and asked for “the smartest guy in here” to fill the need of an intern at his company, Caleb immediately fit the bill.
Refusing to let his youth and inexperience in the oil and natural gas industry stop him, Atchley helped concept and design WellCaddie – a remote monitoring system for oil and natural gas wellheads.
WellCaddie measures pressure, output, production volumes and more. It then transmits real-time data to the cloud, which is easily accessed by a pumper, engineer or industry executive.
As Atchley puts it, “If you can log on Facebook, you can log on to WellCaddie.”
With real-time reports, WellCaddie gives operators better control over their production. It alerts them immediately to any event and lets pumpers know if a particular area requires attention. The old method involved a pumper checking wells once a day, leaving a large window open for issues to arise before the next visit. WellCaddie reporting intervals can be set up for 15 minutes, five minutes or every 30 seconds. These real-time updates help a pumper to take immediate action, which reduces potential environmental impacts such as spills, line breaks and other related issues.
“One of our customers received an alarm for a water spill and was able to immediately get someone out there to fix it,” said Atchely.
The owners of WellCaddie take pride in having an Oklahoma product designed and built by operators, for operators, right here in their home state. It’s easy to install, only taking fifteen minutes to put on a well site. No software or IT specialist is needed, which is greatly beneficial to small-to-mid sized operators.
“We designed with mid-to-small operators in mind, because that’s who we are,” noted Atchley. “You can’t afford an engineering team if you’ve only got 10 wells. So that’s who we want to be, is your engineering team.”
Serving as the Chief Technology Officer and co-owner of WellCaddie at the age of 26, Atchley sees great potential for new graduates to create a future for themselves in this industry. The company’s office in Norman, Oklahoma is strategic, with excellent access to the large talent pool coming out of OU. In fact, most interns and developers at WellCaddie are students.
“Right now the market is ripe for change. It leads to a younger generation that has a lot of opportunity to create new technology in this space,” Atchley said. “We’re picking up great talent from OU, OSU and Oklahoma City University Business College.”
You can learn more about this innovative Oklahoma-based company by visiting wellcaddie.com.