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David Martineau is a certified petroleum geologist and received his B.S. degree in geology from the University of Texas in 1960. He joined Pitts in 1972 and is the exploration manager. Pitts has been involved in the Barnett play since its inception. Prior to Pitts, he worked for Prudential Drilling Funds and Coastal States Gas Producing Company (now El Paso).
In 2006, the Newark East field was the largest producing gas field in Texas, and according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) latest reserves estimate (EIA, 2006, tables B2 and B4), Newark East field ranks third in the nation and second in the nation in terms of production. The Newark East field has generated considerable attention because the gas is produced from the Barnett Shale as opposed to conventional sandstone, conglomerate, or carbonate reservoirs. The field was discovered in 1981 by Mitchell Energy Corporation (MEC) in Wise County, Texas, located in the Fort Worth Basin in north central Texas. George Mitchell, founder and chief executive officer of MEC, had the vision and leadership behind MEC's continued exploration and research for the correct technology to extract gas from this unconventional gas reservoir. Dan Steward was the chief geologist for MEC during the critical exploration development of the Barnett Shale and was honored by AAPG with the 2007 Outstanding Explorer Award. The development of the field started slowly, and only 100 wells were completed between 1981 and 1990. In 1998, a major breakthrough in completion technique occurred when water fracturing replaced gel fracturing. From 1997 to 2006, more than 5829 wells were put on production, and hundreds of additional wells were drilled, completed, or waiting on a pipeline. The field has been divided into two areas: (1) the original core area, where the Barnett sits on top of the Viola Limestone, …