Degradable Polymer

To date, there has been only one polymer considered strong enough for use in making downhole balls and tools: polyglycolic acid (PGA). Whereas balls and tools made from PGA degrade reasonably well in environments that have a sustained temperature greater than 210°F, PGA is generally not considered for use in lower-temperature formations. Bubbletight has developed its new patent-pending Degradable Composite Polymer (DCP) to overcome the issue of degrading in colder formations, and it has the added benefit of costing less than PGA. Balls, darts, and other downhole tools made from DCP will degrade in ambient-­temperature fresh water and have the strength and mechanical toughness of a composite phenolic. Additionally, because it is a thermoplastic that can be ­injection-molded and extruded, DCP can be formed directly into net-shape components with no additional machining required.

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A downhole ball made with Bubbletight’s DCP.


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