Fracking Diagram. What Is Fracking? Learn how fracking utilizes water to extract oil and natural gas from shale formations, why fracking is an economic and energy security solution. Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) is a well stimulation technique in which rock is fractured by a pressurized liquid, usually a water mixture. Fracking is the process of drilling down into the earth before a high-pressure water mixture is directed at the deposit.
Fracturing fluid is a mix of water sand and chemicals is pumped into the well. The pressures causes the rock surrounding the pipe to crack. The proppants hold open these cracks to allow the trapped gas to escape. Gas / oil flows up the well to be extracted. Some potential risks include groundwater contamination and air quality degradation but with deposits usually located at great depths, these are usually do not present a big problem.