2012 Industry Pioneers

Benton F. Baugh

Benton Baugh began his offshore energy career in 1959 with the Bowen Tool Company in Houston. 53 years later, Dr. Baugh has received more than 100 patents directly related to the offshore energy industry. Some of these patents relate to improvements in existing technology and others relate to significant direction changes for the industry.

In 1970, Benton was the lead engineer on the design of the first guideline-less BOP stack (the Sedco 445). His influence in the development of subsea wellheads and completion systems resulted in the granting of 30 patents. That same year, he also invented and developed low wattage failsafe subsea control valves, reducing the requirement of 85 watts to 2 watts. The first gimballing J-lay tower was invented by Benton Baugh, allowing a vessel to turn into the weather for station keeping and completely revolve for steel catenary riser handoff. Benton also designed the first multi-function ROV profiles issued under API Specification 17D.

In 1979, Benton Baugh founded Radoil, Inc. and continues to run the company as its President, designing and manufacturing oilfield and subsea products including the first shearable drill collar. He holds fellowships in ASME and the Marine Technical Society.

A member of the National Academy of Engineering, Benton served as an expert witness on subsea blowout preventer systems before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science and Technology.