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Technology Applications

Chris Carpenter, JPT Technology Editor

Integrated Drilling-Performance Solution

The Weatherford Drilling Advisor Solution combines predrilling historical well analysis, real-time dynamic modeling, and post-drilling knowledge management to deliver improved drilling performance and hazard avoidance. During the predrilling phase, advisors take a scientific approach to early prediction of well behavior by analyzing historical data. The advisors then determine the best-fit technologies, practices, and safe operational limits to create a robust drilling plan. During drilling ­operations, the advisors perform real-time dynamic modeling, which enables early prediction of well behavior and reduces nonproductive time. The Weatherford proprietary software platform enables integration across the drilling process to deliver drilling optimization, wellbore stability, and drilling-hazard avoidance. The post-drilling-knowledge-­management process captures the lessons learned in an end-of-well report that outlines key performance indicators, details opportunities for improvement, and makes recommendations for future projects. The Drilling Advisor Solution provides expertise that reduces uncertainty, improves safety and efficiency, and aligns with budgetary and production goals.

Intelligent-Monitoring System

Xodus Group’s intelligent-­monitoring capability provides tools for operations support to assist with asset surveillance. The capability provides new levels of visibility of operational data from subsurface, subsea, and topside instrumentation to all levels of an organization (Fig. 1). It combines an asset’s data history with specialist engineering calculations to create intelligent process monitors and powerful visualization tools. The process monitors help operators to rapidly identify when systems are operating outside an optimal range, which may be governed by alarms or specified by a surveillance engineer. This allows operators to respond proactively to changes in system operation through predictive monitoring. Some of the tools already created include virtual meters to monitor drift in calibrated instrumentation, prediction and visibility of heat-exchanger fouling, compressor- and pump-performance monitoring, and subsea-production monitoring. Other tools include high-level overview and management dashboards, which are displayed permanently in client offices for personnel to view the current and recent health of the asset. The tools are created remotely and are seamlessly implemented online into the client’s system for immediate access to all users. These solutions are relatively low-cost, with short lead times and swift returns on investment.

Wellhead Outlets for Low-Cost Operation

AnTech has introduced three new products within its Wellhead Outlet range. With the demand for more data and distributed measurements, there has been  growth in the use of fiber-optic cables for permanent monitoring. These solutions are only as good as the connections at surface, and AnTech’s Type FC outlet has been designed to meet this requirement. In order to meet a lower price point for customers, AnTech has reviewed materials and manufacturing processes to keep costs to a minimum. As a result, the new Type FC outlet incorporates a 3D printed smart system for handling and storing up to four fibers. AnTech has also launched two further electrical outlets, Types CB and CC. Each adaptation has been carefully designed to suit various working environments, including pressures ranging from 10,000 to 15,000 psi and temperatures from -60 to +160°C, while meeting tightening budget constraints. The three new wellhead outlets do not compromise on specification and provide customers with a solution in a challenging market.

Impurity-Removal Additive

BWA Water Additives introduced the Bellascavenger 70HS, a unique, ­patent-pending, polymer-based solution de-signed to help enhance the removal of hydrogen sulfide (H2S), mercaptan, and other impurities from hydrocarbon streams present in the vapor phase of oil and gas production. The mechanism of scale inhibition works through threshold inhibition and also by inhibiting crystal growth. This two-pronged approach delivers excellent scale control where commodity scale inhibitors fail. This product functions in the high-pH levels needed for removing H2S and mercaptan and aids in removing these unwanted items. Field trials show that use of Bellascavenger 70HS with triazine to remove H2S enhances the longevity of the chemical program in applications such as bubble towers. Bellascavenger 70HS reduces cost by at least 33%, reduces overall chemical consumption, and increases field safety.

Wireline-Retrievable Well Barrier

Baker Hughes’ CAPSTONE wireline-retrievable well barrier provides an economical solution for temporary wellbore isolation while minimizing nonproductive time (NPT) and ensuring smooth retrieval operations (Fig. 2). The well barrier helps to ensure that the well has been isolated and the integrity of the wellbore is protected. Whether used for temporary suspension, well servicing, or surface-equipment repair, the barrier confirms total well control to enable safe operations and protect the environment. The well barrier offers field-­proven components, including an equalizing valve that uses a telescoping retrieving head to eliminate premature unsetting, and it features an advanced design for entry and retrieval operations, providing increased reliability and reduced NPT. The barrier is compatible with most industry-­standard tools, to enable flexibility and reduce operating costs. Recently, an operator’s North Sea team deployed two CAPSTONE barriers into the well, at 4,330 and 520 ft, respectively. The barriers reliably isolated the wellbore, providing a gas-tight barrier to enable safe workover operations. The shallow-set barrier was retrieved after only 4 days without any issues. After the operator realized the need to cut and pull the casing as part of their workover, the deep-set barrier was later pulled out of hole with the tubing.

High-Pressure Flowmeter

Bell Technologies introduced the Multi­phase Toruswedge (MPT), a high-­pressure flowmeter for safely measuring multiphase volumetric flow rates for wellbore processes. The meter is designed to provide high-accuracy volumetric flow measurement on drilling rigs and can be used for multiple applications ranging from low to extremely high pressure (Fig. 3). The MPT is particularly suited to mud flow where fluid is injected into the well through high-pressure and -volume injection pumps. Mud is then returned to the surface through the bell nipple, where it flows through the shaker for cleaning before being recirculated back to the wellbore. The product handles demanding applications that require robust performance combined with low maintenance. The MPT will allow operators to confidently monitor mud flow both in and out of the well and ensure long-term asset reliability as well as safe rig operation. By monitoring the complete mud-flow process, the rig operator will be able to control the drilling process safely and provide a more economically priced wellbore. The Bell Technologies MPT mud flowmeter is a primary flow element with a maximum pressure rating of 20,000 psi.