Tangen, Geir Ivan (Lundin Norway AS) | Smaaskjaer, Geir (Lundin Norway AS) | Bergseth, Einar (Lundin Norway AS) | Clark, Andy (Lundin Norway AS) | Fossli, Børre (Enhanced Drilling AS) | Claudey, Eric (Enhanced Drilling AS) | Qiang, Zhizhuang (Enhanced Drilling AS)
In 2015, while coring in the carbonate reservoir in the second appraisal well on an oil and gas discovery in the Barents Sea (386 m water depth), the drill string fell 2 meters and a total mud loss was experienced leading to a well control incident. As a result, since 2016, the operator has introduced and used the Controlled Mud Level (CML) system. To date this system has been used on seven wells including two further appraisal wells on the same field and five exploration wells in the area.
In 2017 it was decided to drill a horizontal well in the same carbonate reservoir and to perform an extended production test in close proximity to the original loss well. Since it is not possible to predict where large voids (karsts) and natural fractures could be encountered, contingency to handle high losses, had to be implemented for the horizontal well. During the well planning, further risk reducing measures were implemented, including the use of wired drill pipe to improve the management of the wellbore pressure profile. This paper describes the planning processes leading up to the operation and the highlights of the operation itself together with the lessons learned. It elaborates on how wired pipe, used in combination with the CML system, added value to the operation. It shows how it was possible to drill the reservoir section with a low overbalance while managing severe losses associated with open karsts and natural fractures and still maintaining the fluid barrier. Despite the severe losses encountered it was possible to safely drill and complete the well without any well control event by use of the CML system.
Drilling operations are faced with conditions of subsurface uncertainty with unexpected drilling hazard potential. Operation is done in 24 hours a day continuously, until drilling is declared complete. The consequence of this work environment is the potential for high work accident, one of which is caused by situational conditions in the field that allow the communication limitations in clear and detailed.
Such conditions may include high-noise working conditions, limited visibility due to weather hazards (rain, fog, dark / night), and sour gas exposure. In this condition, often verbal communication is followed by non verbal communication, either in the form of the use of horns (morse), flag raising (semaphore) and limb movements. Non-verbal communication will be more urgent if the drilling operation conditions in emergency conditions, such as the occurrence of kick, blowout and exposure to sour gases. Non-verbal communication occasionally used in any drilling site does not have standardization, thus increasing the potential for communication errors.
Methods Non-verbal instructions intended in this paper is a sign language that serves as a medium for delivering work orders (instructions). This non verbal instruction uses one limb, represented by at least 2 limb movements in at least 2 stages of movement, to interpret a command or work instruction. If less than 2 movements or less than 1 stage of movement, then the movement of the body may have meaning, but can not be implemented because the instructions are not complete
With the invention, paper and efforts of this standardization, the communication process and the delivery of orders in both normal and emergency conditions at the drilling sites can be carried out in a structured, standardized, clear, detailed and widely applicable manner. The instruction method in the form of non-verbal codes is named: NS Blind Code Drilling, which has been registered since December 2014 to the Directorate General of Intellectual Property Rights and is in process related to the patent application.
To safely plan and execute MPD Influx Control operations, the limits of the primary barrier envelope must be communicated and understood. These safe operating limits have historically been represented with an MPD Operations Matrix. More recently, the development of the Influx Management Envelope (IME) has provided a means of communicating the primary barrier limits with improved accuracy and clarity. However, the generation of the IME currently requires performing a series of complex well control simulations with specialist engineering support. Because drilling operations are dynamic in nature, a practical method to generate the IME boundaries at the wellsite is required so that changes to mud weight, flowrate, surface and bottom hole circulating temperatures, trajectory, and bit depth can be accounted for, and the IME kept up to date.
This paper describes the development of a novel tool to quickly and automatically generate IMEs at the wellsite without the need for sophisticated modelling software and specialist personnel. The single bubble derivation that was originally presented by Culen et al was analysed further to obtain a more accurate and explicit relationship rather than an implicit one, which forms the basis for the calculations. The IME can be updated based on any well parameter changes, which allows field engineers to maintain an up to date and accurate IME throughout MPD operations.
Al-Hameedi, Abo Taleb T. (Missouri University of Science and Technology) | Alkinani, Husam H. (Missouri University of Science and Technology) | Dunn-Norman, Shari (Missouri University of Science and Technology) | Amer, Ahmed S. (Newpark Technology Center/ Newpark Drilling Fluids)
Equivalent circulation density (ECD) management is a key factor for the successfulness of the drilling operations, especially when dealing with narrow mud-weight windows. Poor management of ECD can result in unsafe and/or inefficient drilling as well as an increase in drilling cost due to associated nonproductive time (NPT). Different parameters can affect the ECD directly or indirectly including, but not limited to, wellbore geometry, cuttings, hole cleaning efficiency, flow rate, and rheological properties of the drilling fluid. However, the magnitude of the effect of each parameter is not well understood. In this paper, a comprehensive statistical analysis using the correlation coefficient was conducted using real field data to investigate the effect of three controllable factors - solid contents (SC), yield point (Yp), and plastic viscosity (PV) - on ECD.
Nitrogen Cap Drilling (NCD) is a technique developed by Tengizchevroil (TCO) that enables drilling a highly fractured reservoir under conditions where more conventional pressurized mud cap drilling techniques are not viable. NCD is an extension of the closed hole circulating drilling (CHCD) technique (Ref SPE Paper # 79850) previously developed and used extensively by TCO for drilling a highly fractured carbonate reservoir where severe loss circulation is encountered and incurable.
CHCD is a pressurized mud cap drilling technique that relies on the ability to fill the well with a fluid density lighter than the reservoir pressure gradient in order to maintain communication with the reservoir pressure. Once the reservoir pressure gradient drops below the density of the lightest fluid available, the well will no longer support a full column of fluid to surface and an alternate drilling method must be employed.
TCO has developed NCD as a response to this operating reality in the Tengiz field. The NCD technique involves filling the annulus with a heavier than reservoir pressure gradient fluid once severe lost returns are encountered. The annulus fluid level does not reach the surface, and the resulting air gap is pressurized with nitrogen gas. This nitrogen "cap" is contained under the Rotating Control Device (RCD) which allows for maintaining pressure communication with the formation. Well status is continuously monitored by tracking the wellhead pressure and measuring the annulus fluid level. The bottom hole pressure is balanced by manipulating the composition of the annular fluid column and controlling the wellhead pressure.
In 2017, TCO conducted successful field trials and demonstrated that NCD is a viable technique to enable the continuation of the low reservoir pressure drilling program in Tengiz. TCO has since adopted NCD as the standard technique in wells where CHCD is not technically viable or operationally preferable. This paper will describe NCD technique development, equipment, procedures, operational implementation, and key learnings to date.
An operator considered using Constant Bottomhole Pressure (CBHP) Managed Pressure Drilling (MPD) in the evaluation phase of a drilling project and decided not to go forward with MPD. While drilling the well, unfortunately, they had a well control event that required an increased mud-weight ultimately resulting in a differentially stuck-pipe condition.
MPD services were exclusively called to help free this differentially stuck pipe/BHA. MPD provided enough flexibility to deliberately reduce the wellbore pressure below pore-pressure and decrease the differential pressure to free the stuck pipe/BHA. Using CBHP variation of MPD resulted in unsticking the pipe as explained in this case history. The detected influx was circulated out with appropriate pump rate (high flow rate) using MPD equipment. The operator drilled forward with the assistance and additional protection of MPD to reach the Targeted Depth (TD) without having further issues in a very narrow drilling window. This successful field operation shows that CBHP MPD can indeed be used to precisely manage the annular pressures, as elaborated in the IADC’s MPD definition, and safely and successfully solve some of the baffling problems of the drilling industry.
Fernandes, Andre Alonso (Petrobras) | Vanni, Guilherme Siqueira (Petrobras) | Martinello, Isac Alexandre (Petrobras) | Terra, Felipe de Souza (Petrobras) | Sales, Ivan Mendes (Petrobras) | Guedes, Jonas (Petrobras) | Vasconcelos, Kelliton da Silva (Petrobras)
Manage Pressure Drilling is not a new technology, but the transition from land operation to floaters is still recent. This created a situation where drilling contractors and operators are still learning what the true capabilities of the technology are.
MPD technology adoption on floaters can be divide it in 3 different phases: Use for Early Kick Detection and wellbore stability improvement; Introduction of Hydrostatically Underbalanced fluid; Influx circulation through the MPD system;
Use for Early Kick Detection and wellbore stability improvement;
Introduction of Hydrostatically Underbalanced fluid;
Influx circulation through the MPD system;
In the first phase most of the procedures and barrier concepts stay untouched.
After eliminating initial skepticism, second phase commences. Hydrostatic pressure exerted by the fluid is inferior to the formation pressure. Primary barrier concept alters. The technology can be applied to drill wells with narrow operational windows, unviable conventionally.
Finally, third phase starts with very limited volumes being allowed to be circulated through the MPD system. After first successful influx circulations through the MPD system, increased volumes may be encouraged to be circulated through the primary barrier.
Challenging drilling operations in the Vaca Muerta unconventional shale gas play have prompted operators to implement innovative drilling techniques to improve drillability and operational efficiency. Significant benefits have been reported by utilizing Managed Pressure Drilling (MPD), Underbalanced Drilling (UBD), and/or drilling with casing; however, challenges still exist, due to a variety of reasons. The heterogeneity found from field to field and within fields has resulted in wells with significant events, some resulting in loss of the well, even on the same pad where a previous well has been drilled uneventfully.
Arguably, the most successful non-conventional drilling technique being incrementally used in the area is MPD, often combined with UBD, particularly in gas wells. As with any new technology implementation, there is a learning curve which can be accelerated by translating learnings from successful experiences.
Three key components for a successful implementation on MPD are still building a collective experience in the Vaca Muerta play. Firstly, the equipment and associated technology is the key enabler for physically perform the operations safely and efficiently.
The second component is a ‘soft’ framework consisting of a robust layered approach including overarching standard policies, the MPD strategy for implementation in the specific project, conceptual and detailed procedures, and specific work instructions.
Lastly, the human component is a group of competent personnel, whom, at their specific responsibility level, understand the ‘soft’ framework, and knows how to operate the hardware to implement the technology so that objectives are met.
The potential of the technology is limited to the weakest of these three components. A strong combination of any two of them, not complemented by the third one, will most likely result in a partial success at best, if not a complete failure at worst.
The operator had recently three major events in wells being drilled with MPD, which resulted in the loss of the wells. After implementing a training program on MPD/UBD, which emphasized the human factor and understanding of the equipment, the ‘soft’ framework of strategy, procedures and project management, the safety and efficiency during operations has increased significantly. This resulted in a better handling of events related to bottom hole pressure control without a single well loss event to the date of writing this document, approximately nine months of continuous operations. The other mainstay of this process has been the flexibility to adapt the application of the methodology based on the well challenges encountered.
The objective of this paper is to discuss safety philosophy underlying MPD operations and address potential risks involved and consequences for drilling assets during MPD deployment on a Deepwater Drilling MODU. HSE and Risk Considerations for Deepwater MPD projects will be outlined. This paper will also address rig configuration challenges and propose considerations for standardizing MPD Equipment for Surface Back Pressure (SBP), Pressurized Mud Cap Drilling (PMCD) and Floating Mud Cap Drilling (FMCD) Operations.
The Influx Management Envelope (IME) assists in identifying influx conditions which could compromise the primary well barrier and fluid handling capacity on surface. IME boundaries are influenced by changes in parameters such as mud weight, wellbore depth and geometry, pump rate, surface pressure, etc. Thus, any changes to these parameters will change the acceptable influx volume and intensity for Dynamic Influx Management. It is, therefore, critical to understand how changes in each of these variables affect IME limits so that its validity can be established within parameter ranges, rather than only for discrete values. This work presents an in-depth discussion of how IME limits are determined, with both detailed philosophical and practical guidance on methods to calculate the surface and subsurface limits. Recent deepwater applications of the IME are used to represent baselines for presenting methods of calculating IME limits, including a basic single bubble approach, through to the most robust approach of including transient, multiphase simulations. Parameter sensitivity analyses are performed to determine reasonable ranges for which an IME is valid, with the goal of understanding the required IME update frequency during operation.