Hydraulic Fracturing, also known as “Fracking,” is a “well stimulation” process used to maximize the extraction of underground resources – oil, natural gas and geothermal energy. The hydraulic fracturing process includes the acquisition of source water, well construction, well stimulation, and waste disposal. Hydraulic fracturing involves the pressurized injection of fluids commonly made up of water and chemical additives into a geologic formation. The pressure exceeds the rock strength and the fluid opens or enlarges fractures in the rock. As the formation is fractured, a “propping agent,” such as sand or ceramic beads, is pumped into the fractures to keep them from closing as the pumping pressure is released. The fracturing fluids (water and chemical additives) are then returned back to the surface. Natural gas will flow from pores and fractures in the rock into the well for subsequent extraction.
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