CNX Gas Corp. recently broke a prior world drilling record, and set a new one when a contractor rig drilled 15,172 cumulative feet with a single drill bit.

CNX Gas attributes its success to Smith Bits, the manufacturer of its drill bits; its drilling contractor, Crown Drilling; and to its directional driller, Nevis Energy Services. "This is a testimony to the hard work and quality of effort by our team here at our Mountaineer operation. The more wells we drill, the more proficient and cost effective our drilling effort becomes. We aim to keep besting the record we just set," states Sam McLaughlin, general manager-Northern Appalachian Operations for CNX Gas.

When asked to describe the drilling process associated with this horizontal coal-bed methane well, Joshua Hinton, assistant drilling manager for CNX Gas, explains, "The bit went into the ground for the first time on February 11, 2007, and came out on February 24. The bit went back into the ground for the second time on March 11, 2007, and came out on March 18 for a total of 238.9 on-bottom drilling hours."

The record-breaking bit now is on display at the headquarters of CNX Gas in Pittsburgh, Pa.