John L. Gidley

John Gidley

B.S.Ch.E. 1950; M.S.Ch.E. 1955; Ph.D. 1955;
President, John L. Gidley & Associates, Inc.

After earning three chemical engineering degrees from UT Austin, Dr. Gidley joined Humble Oil and Refining Company's Production Research Division in 1954. His 31-year career with Exxon was highlighted by many professional publications and the awarding of eight patents.

From 1968 to 1981, Dr. Gidley supervised Exxon's Subsurface Engineering Group, which was responsible for applying new techniques for well stimulation, cementing and sand control. In 1969 he invented, patented and fostered the application of a sandstone acidizing process which, within the first three years of its use, increased daily oil production at Exxon by more than 25,000 barrels. The Acid Mutual Solvent Method was widely applied throughout the oil industry, and royalties earned on the patent by Exxon's research affiliate more than covered Dr. Gidley's salary and benefits during his last 17 years of employment.

Dr. Gidley managed Exxon's engineering training program from 1971 to 1981. From 1982 to 1985, he oversaw collection of detailed engineering data on more than 2,000 acidizing and 500 fracturing treatments. This formed the basis of Exxon's detailed knowledge of well stimulation processes.

Dr. Gidley also contributed to oilfield technical literature. From 1969 to 1986, he chaired the American Petroleum Institute Subcommittee on Well Completion Materials, which produced several recommended practices on the evaluation of materials used in well simulation and sand control. In 1979, he co-authored the Society of Petroleum Engineers monograph Acidizing Fundamentals, which became the industry reference. He was editor-in-chief of the Society of Petroleum Engineers monograph Recent Advances in Hydraulic Fracturing, published in 1989, which has become the authoritative work on this subject.

Upon retiring from Exxon in 1986, he organized a petroleum engineering consulting firm specializing in well stimulation and has been awarded six more patents. He was named a distinguished member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers in 1990 and received the Society's Distinguished Service Award in 1990 and its John Franklin Carll Award in 1992. In 1994, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering. He is a member of the UT System's Chancellor's Council and the University's Littlefield Society and is a life member of Friends of Alec.

OYEG Honorees

An "Outstanding Young Engineering Graduate" (OYEG) is a graduate who is under the age of 40 at the time of selection. Learn more about OYEG honorees.