Advanced Signal Analysis of an Electrical-Submersible-Pump Failure Owing to Scaling

Noui-Mehidi, Mohamed Nabil (Saudi Aramco) | Bukhamseen, Ahmed Y. (Saudi Aramco)



In this paper we focus on electrical-submersible-pump (ESP) failure caused by scale buildup. Weak fluctuations recorded in the motor current signals several weeks before a failure indicate a change in the motor load. Advanced signal analysis of the motor current data reveals the presence of a dynamic characteristic in the ESP signal during rapid scale buildup in the pump stages. On the basis of the raw data from the motor current draw, a dynamic cascade can be identified in the current marked with the superimposition of several characteristic frequencies added over time that develop into a chaotic trend. Our analysis was conducted with different signal-processing tools, such as Fourier transform, wavelet transform, and chaotic attractors, which described the nature of the scale signature in the current logs. This analysis was the first step toward developing a real-time diagnostic tool for predicting ESP failures.