Automated Mud Skid Holds Promise of Safety, Efficiency Improvements With Real-Time Fluid Monitoring

Journal of Petroleum Technology 

As industry buzzwords go, "automation" has spent its time in oilfield vernacular climbing the ranks of widely used terms. It now resides as one of the go-to designations for signs of advancement in any number of disciplines. Its use has been tied most frequently with drilling operations as contractors look to keep employees out of harm's way via a robotic takeover of most motion-intensive jobs on the rig's drill floor--basically anything that grips, clamps, or spins. More recently, the term has moved away from the drill floor and into other well construction operations allowing for things such as remote, real-time measurements without the need for boots on the ground. For areas like west Texas and the Permian Basin shales, having the option for remote readouts and a component of automation that can allow for corrective actions should the need arise can go a long way in terms of safety and efficiency gains as well as better manpower application.

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