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Oilfield Glossary
Oilfield Glossary
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Tools

sidewall core

1. n. [Formation Evaluation]
A core taken from the side of the borehole, usually by a wireline tool. Sidewall cores may be taken using percussion or mechanical drilling. Percussion cores are taken by firing hollow bullets into the formation. The bullets are attached to the tool by fasteners, and are retrieved, along with the core inside, by pulling up the tool and the fasteners. Percussion coring tools typically hold 20 to 30 bullets, but two or three tools can be combined on one run in the hole. Mechanical tools use hollow rotary drills to cut and then pull out core plugs. Up to 75 plugs can be recovered on one run. With full recovery, cores from typical percussion tools are 1 in. [2.5 cm] in diameter by 1 3/4 in. [4.4 cm] long, while those from mechanical tools are 0.91 in. [2.3 cm] in diameter by 2 in. [5 cm] long. The latter are also known as rotary sidewall cores.