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.