Drilling Modeling and Simulation: Current State and Future Goals

Fig. 1: An example of bottomhole-assembly modeling.

The process of drilling a borehole is very complex, involving surface and downhole drilling systems that interact with the drilling fluid and the surrounding rocks. Modeling and simulating every aspect of the drilling process and drilling system is still considered too complex to be realized. However, many areas of modeling and simulation are undergoing aggressive development, and the advancement of this technology may dramatically improve future attempts to model and simulate the entire drilling process accurately.


Drilling modeling and simulation (DMS) involves modeling and simulating the behavior of drilling systems or processes. DMS should provide crucial information about drilling systems or processes without actually constructing a well.

DMS methods are designed to help enhance drilling efficiency, productivity, and performance; manage various risks effectively; and consequently improve personal safety.

Recently, many DMS software applications have come to be used in the predrilling stage as well as in real time. In an operations phase, models are returned and rerun to obtain the best predictions of drilling systems.

This article, written by Special Publications Editor Adam Wilson, contains highlights of paper SPE 173045, “Drilling Modeling and Simulation: Current State and Future Goals,” by Junichi Sugiura, SPE, Schlumberger; Robello Samuel, SPE, Halliburton;Joachim Oppelt, SPE, Baker Hughes; G.P. Ostermeyer, SPE, Braunschweig Technical University; John Hedengren, SPE, Brigham Young University; and Paul Pastusek, SPE, ExxonMobil, prepared for the 2015 SPE/IADC Drilling Conference and Exhibition, London, 17–19 March. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
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Drilling Modeling and Simulation: Current State and Future Goals

01 September 2015

Volume: 67 | Issue: 9


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