RFID Drilling-Circulation Sub

Weatherford has developed its newest radio-frequency-identification (RFID) -enabled technology, the RFID drilling-circulation subassembly. The subassembly is a remotely actuated circulation device used to simplify drilling and hole-cleanup operations. The device uses RFID technology to communicate open and close commands. When an operator needs to move the subassembly from the closed position to either of the two open positions (open and diverted), an RFID tag is dropped from surface and circulated internally through the subassembly. The signal is received by an antenna built into the tool, and a battery-powered electric motor operates a hydraulic pump, which moves the valve to the requested preprogrammed position. This technology transforms conventional methods by allowing drilling to continue without the need for ball seats that reduce the inside diameter, thus making the process more efficient. This technology is especially beneficial when multiple tools are run, in which case the lowermost ball seat would be a major restriction if ball seats were used. The RFID-­activated circulation valve logs all downhole events within the subassembly’s internal memory. This information can be downloaded and accessed in less than an hour. The RFID drilling-circulation subassembly includes a range of additional improvements, such as reverse circulation, full-diameter through-bore access, and robust design that encourages productivity and reliability for operators. Additional technology (pressure cycling) is incorporated in the subassembly design, which enables alternative communication if pumping an RFID tag is impossible.

Weatherford’s RFID drilling-circulation subassembly.



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