With the most recent industry downturn still fresh in many minds, the oil and gas E&P sector is approaching this recovery with a commitment to long-term cost discipline. As a result, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies are being adopted by operators and service companies alike as a means of cost savings while driving operational efficiency.
AR technologies employ enhanced visualization hardware, techniques, and methodologies to create new environments wherein digital and physical objects and their data coexist and interact with one another, enhancing the user experience of the real world (
Until recently, these technologies were primarily applied as enhanced entertainment products, most notably within the gaming industry. However, during the past several years, and thanks to the introduction of hands-free, head-mounted display (HMD) technologies, such as Microsoft® HoloLens™ and now HoloLens 2, AR and VR are migrating into the enterprise sector.
While the oil field has not been as quick to integrate AR and VR as other sectors, such as medicine, defense, and aeronautics, operators and service providers alike have increased adoption overthe past 12 months. Motivated by a mandate to keep operating costs low and improve efficiencies in terms of field processes, operators have begun implementing AR/VR applications as collaborative problem-solving, planning, and design tools.
For example, some operators are initiating ARconcepts to promote internal use development and prototyping for both oilfield applications and remote refinery inspections. Additionally, service companies are embracing the use of smart glasses and wearable technologies to help improve remote work and collaboration to help increase in-field safety and reduce downtime.
As part of its strategy to help drive the oil and gas industry's digital transformation, one major service provider is developing AR/VR applications to create digital representations of physical oilfield assets on the Microsoft® HoloLens device. One area of focus is the planning, design, and deployment of solids control, fluid separation, and handling technologies for offshore drilling applications.
Several mature fields in the North Sea experience significant challenges relating to high pressures and temperatures accompanied with the infill drilling challenge of very narrow margins between pore and fracture pressures. To navigate these narrow mud weight windows, it is critical to understand the bottom hole pressure. However, in the cases of fractured formations above the target zones, severe losses can be encountered during drilling and cementing operations often leading to the inability to maintain a full mud column at all times and even threaten the ability to reach TD.
The operator therefore decided to investigate the use of a new acoustic telemetry system that could provide internal and external pressure measurements, (along with other downhole measurements) independently of traditional mud pulse telemetry in the drilling assembly. Real-time distributed pressure data essential to understanding the downhole conditions could therefore be provided regardless of circulation, even under severe losses or during tripping and cementing operations.
This acoustic telemetry network was deployed on several wells through multiple hole sizes and including losses management, liner running and cementing operations.
The initial primary purpose of running the network was the ability to monitor the top of the mud at all times, even in significant loss situations. As real-time data was acquired it became apparent that the data could also be used in real-time to aid and help quantify the actual downhole pressures. The use of this downhole data was modified and new calculations designed for simpler visualization of equivalent circulating densities at the shoe, bit and identified weak zones in the well at depths beyond the acoustic tools themselves. This data was used to manage the bottom hole pressure within a 300 psi mud weight window to ultimately enable the well to be delivered to planned TD.
The tool and calculations helped verify managed pressure connections and subsequent pump ramp up and down operations to minimize pressure fluctuations in the well. Additionally the data was used during dynamic formation integrity testing and to measure and calculate ECD at various positions along the drillstring and casing when downhole PWD measurements were unavailable.
This paper will describe how the implementation of new technology through the downhole acoustic network was deployed and the lessons learned in how the real-time data was used, changed and adapted in this particular well. Due to this deployment the acoustic telemetry network will now be used on upcoming equally challenging wells and its range of operations expanded to include drilling, tripping and liner cementing operations.
Saasen, Arild (University of Stavanger) | Pallin, Jan Egil (JAGTECH AS) | Ånesbug, Geir Olav (JAGTECH AS) | Lindgren, Alf Magne (Schlumberger Oilfield Services) | Aaker, Gudmund (Schlumberger Oilfield Services) | Rødsjø, Mads (AkerBP)
Different logging operations can suffer from presence of metallic particles in the drilling fluids. Directional drilling in Arctic areas can be a challenge because of magnetic contamination in the drilling fluid. This is a challenge especially when drilling east-west relative to the magnetic north direction. Magnetic and paramagnetic particles in the drilling fluid will shield the down hole compasses and introduce additional errors to the surveying than those normally included in the uncertainty ellipsoid. The objective of the project is to remove the magnetic particles being the largest contributor to this error.
On many offshore drilling rigs there is mounted ditch magnets to remove metallic swarf from the drilling fluid. These magnets will normally only remove the coarser swarf. In this project we use a combination of strong magnets and flow directors to significantly improve the performance of the ditch magnets. This combination, together with proper routines for cleaning the ditch magnets significantly helps cleaning the drilling fluid.
By the combined use of flow directors and ditch magnets it was possible to extract more than five times as much magnetic contamination from the drilling fluid. This is verified by comparing the ditch magnet efficiencies from two drilling rigs drilling ERD wells. The logging tool signal strengths of several down hole instruments were unusually good and insignificant down times were observed on the logging tools. The results are anticipated to have aided to the directional drilling performance.
Detailed information on how to clean the drilling fluid properly from magnetic contamination is presented. It is also shown that this cleaning is significantly better than conventional cleaning of magnetic debris from drilling fluids.
This paper describes the first application of clay-free IEFs in the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS), with an emphasis on an impressively low and consistent ECD contribution. This year has been a great year for me; I was able to play more rounds of golf than expected! I was also successful in sealing a few research collaboration agreements within the oil and gas industry.
In need of an exploration boost, Norway doled out a record 83 production licenses in mature areas of the Norwegian Continental Shelf to 33 firms. Norway hopes for a continued rise in offshore exploration and development activity to ensure steady oil and gas production through the next decade. Equinor has grabbed seven new licenses in the Barents and Norwegian Seas, the latest in a flurry of offshore activity in which the firm has added acreage off the UK and Brazil, gained approval for a big Arctic project, and awarded billions of dollars in service contracts. A reservoir-conditions coreflood study was undertaken to assist with design of drilling and completion fluids for a Norwegian field. Multiple fluids were tested, and the lowest permeability alterations did not correlate with the lowest drilling-fluid-filtrate-loss volumes.
Critical drilling issues are usually associated with convergence of pore and fracture pressure, and are intimately connected to the downhole behavior of drilling fluids and uncertainties associated with predicting their behavior during well construction. Top areas of operational concerns, such as lost circulation, hole-cleaning, barite sag, wellbore stability, stuck pipe, etc. all share a common thread in hydraulics, and continue to plague drilling operations and efficiencies. From shallow sections to well completions, the drilling fluid and its imposed pressures represent the primary barrier for well control, and fluid hydraulics affects every stage of well construction. Current measurements provide at best a partial view of downhole pressure windows, and software technologies are necessary to fill in the gaps. A classic example includes optimum speeds for running casing where no downhole measurements currently exist.
Content of PetroWiki is intended for personal use only and to supplement, not replace, engineering judgment. SPE disclaims any and all liability for your use of such content. During circulation, when less fluid returns to the surface than was injected into the well. Severe lost circulation is the loss of all returns.