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A number of cementitious materials used for cementing wells do not fall into any specific API or ASTM classification.These materials include: Pozzolanic materials include any natural or industrial siliceous or silico-aluminous material, which will combine with lime in the presence of water at ordinary temperatures to produce strength-developing insoluble compounds similar to those formed from hydration of Portland cement. Typically, pozzolanic material is categorized as natural or artificial, and can be either processed or unprocessed. The most common sources of natural pozzolanic materials are volcanic materials and diatomaceous earth (DE). Artificial pozzolanic materials are produced by partially calcining natural materials such as clays, shales, and certain siliceous rocks, or are more usually obtained as an industrial byproduct. Pozzolanic oilwell cements are typically used to produce lightweight slurries.
Weighting agents or heavyweight additives are used to increase slurry density for control of highly pressured wells. Weighting agents are normally required at densities greater than 17 lbm/gal where dispersants or silica is no longer effective. This is the most commonly used weighting agent. Hematite is a brick-red, naturally occurring mineral with a dull metallic luster. It contains approximately 70% iron.
Dispersants, also known as friction reducers, are used extensively in cement slurries to improve the rheological properties that relate to the flow behavior of the slurry. Dispersants are used primarily to lower the frictional pressures of cement slurries while they are being pumped into the well. Converting frictional pressure of a slurry, during pumping, reduces the pumping rate necessary to obtain turbulent flow for specific well conditions, reduces surface pumping pressures and horsepower required to pump the cement into the well, and reduces pressures exerted on weak formations, possibly preventing circulation losses. Another advantage of dispersants is that they provide slurries with high solids-to-water ratios that have good rheological properties. This factor has been used in designing high-density slurries up to approximately 17 lbm/gal without the need for a weighting additive.
When determining a slurry's characteristics and performance, these testing procedures are recommended: The methods of testing cement for downhole application are based on performance testing. Testing methods are usually performed according to API specifications, though specifically designed and engineered equipment or tests are also used. The choice of additives and testing criteria is dictated primarily by the specific parameters of the well to be cemented. Performance testing has proven to be the most effective in establishing how a slurry will behave under specific well conditions. There is no direct means of predicting cement performance from the properties of cement, and no technique has yet been established that would correlate cement composition and cement/additive interaction with performance.
Accelerators speed up or shorten the reaction time required for a cement slurry to become a hardened mass. In the case of oilfield cement slurries, this indicates a reduction in thickening time and/or an increase in the rate of compressive-strength development of the slurry. Acceleration is particularly beneficial in cases where a low-density (e.g., high-water-content) cement slurry is required or where low-temperature formations are encountered. Of the chloride salts, CaCl2 is the most widely used, and in most applications, it is also the most economical. The exception is when water-soluble polymers such as fluid-loss-control agents are used.
It is possible to make slurries ranging in density from 4 to 18 lbm/gal using foamed cement. Foamed cement is a mixture of cement slurry, foaming agents, and a gas. Foamed cement is created when a gas, usually nitrogen, is injected at high pressure into a base slurry that incorporates a foaming agent and foam stabilizer. Nitrogen gas can be considered inert, and does not react with or modify the cement-hydration-product formation. Under special circumstances, compressed air can be used instead of nitrogen to create foamed cement.
Remedial cementing requires as much technical, engineering, and operational experience, as primary cementing but is often done when wellbore conditions are unknown or out of control, and when wasted rig time and escalating costs force poor decisions and high risk. Squeeze cementing is a "correction" process that is usually only necessary to correct a problem in the wellbore. Before using a squeeze application, a series of decisions must be made to determine (1) if a problem exists, (2) the magnitude of the problem, (3) if squeeze cementing will correct it, (4) the risk factors present, and (5) if economics will support it. Most squeeze applications are unnecessary because they result from poor primary-cement-job evaluations or job diagnostics. Squeeze cementing is a dehydration process.
Elhassan, Azza (ADNOC Offshore) | Hamidzada, Ahmedagha Eldaniz (ADNOC Offshore) | Takahiro, Toki (ADNOC Offshore) | Motohiro, Toma (ADNOC Offshore) | Orfali, Mohd Waheed (Schlumberger) | Phyoe, Thein Zaw (Schlumberger) | Salazar, Jose (Schlumberger) | Alaleeli, Ahmed Rashed (ADNOC Offshore)
Abstract Good cementing practices are required to achieve effective zonal isolation and provide long-term well integrity for uninterrupted safe production and subsequent abandonment. Zonal isolation can be attained by paying close attention to optimizing the drilling parameters, hole cleaning, fluid design, cement placement, and monitoring. In challenging extended reach wells in the UAE, different methods were employed to deliver progressive improvement in zonal isolation. Cementing the intermediate and production sections in the UAE field is challenging because of the highly deviated, long, open holes; use of nonaqueous fluids (NAFs); and the persistent problem of lost circulation. Compounding the problem are the multiple potential reservoirs; the pressure testing of the casing at high pressures after cement is set; and the change in downhole pressures and temperatures during production phases, which results in additional stresses. Hence, the mechanical properties for cement systems must be customized to withstand the downhole stresses. The requirement of spacer fluids with nonaqueous compatible properties adds complexity. Lessons learned from prior operations were applied sequentially to produce fit-for-purpose solutions in the UAE field. Standard cement practices were taken as a starting point, and subsequent changes were introduced to overcome specific challenges. These challenges included deeper 12 ¼-in. sections, which made it difficult to manage equivalent circulating densities (ECDs), and a stricter requirement of zonal isolation across sublayers in addition to required top of cement at surface. To satisfy these requirements, several measures were taken gradually: applying engineered trimodal blend systems to remain under ECD limits; pumping a lower-viscosity fluid ahead of the spacer; using NAF-compatible spacers for effective mud removal; employing flexible cement systems to withstand downhole stresses; and modeling the cement job with an advanced cement placement software to simulate displacement rates, bottomhole circulating temperatures, centralizer placement, mud removal and comply with a zero discharge policy that restricts the extra slurry volume to reach surface. To enhance conventional chemistry-based mud cleaning, an engineered scrubbing additive was included in the spacers with a microemulsion-based surfactant. The results of cement jobs were analyzed by playback in advanced evaluation software to verify the efficiency of the applied solutions. This continuous improvement response to changes in well design has resulted in a significant positive change in cement bond logs; a flexural attenuation measurement tool has been used to evaluate the lightweight slurry quality behind the casing, which has helped in enhancing the confidence level in well integrity in these challenging wells. The results highlight the benefit of developing engineering solutions that can be adapted to respond to radical changes in conditions or requirements.
Lamik, Abdelfattah (Montanuniversität Leoben) | Pittino, Gerhard (Montanuniversität Leoben) | Prohaska-Marchried, Michael (Montanuniversität Leoben) | Krishna, Ravi (Montanuniversität Leoben) | Thonhauser, Gerhard (Montanuniversität Leoben) | Antretter, Thomas (Institut fur Mechanik)
Abstract This paper presents the results of laboratory static and dynamic tests on casing-cement-rock systems exposed to axial loads under ambient conditions. A new testing method has been developed. The casing-cement-rock system mostly fails due to tension and shear stresses. In various applications such as HPHT, deep-water, (steam) injection or geothermal wells, the cement-casing bond is exposed to cyclic thermomechanical loads resulting in casing elongation, contraction, expansion and subsequently in cyclic radial and axial stresses at the cement-casing-rock system. Cement is a brittle material which can fail when subjected to repeated application of stresses lesser in magnitude than the statically determined strength. A novel atmospheric test cell has been designed and constructed. In order to achieve the fatigue limits of the cement-casing bond, a set of testing procedures has been established. Several tests are conducted to evaluate de-bonding. The focus on de-bonding is achieved by allowing the casing to move through the test while preventing any cement movement. Thus, when a force is applied in the axial z-direction - either the casing is pulled out (tension) or pushed down (compression) - the casing has enough space to move in both directions. The advantage of this testing method is that different stress ratios can be applied during the test.
Abstract The success or failure of cement plugs are known to alter the timeline of an oil well; not to mention the additional costs and NPT associated with the rig activities. Unsuccessful cement plug costs oil companies considerable amount of capital both in extra rig time and service company expenses. Suggested procedures for placing cement plugs have been presented in number of papers - comprising of slurry design, spacer recommendations, laboratory testing and placement techniques. However, it is very easy to deviate from these standard practices due to over confidence, negligence or both. In Mexico, it was observed that the success rate of placing cement plugs dropped due to operational and engineering design shortcomings. Towards the end of 2018 there were several unsuccessful cement plug jobs that questioned the regular plug procedures. Careful analysis of the past mistakes led to the conclusion that an effective approach to alter the local plug placement practices was necessary. An updated cement plug placement software was used in conjunction with strict standard practices that turned around the trend and enabled consistent successful placement of cement plugs in the first attempt itself. A detailed yet simple approach towards cement plugs was adopted in both engineering design and operational execution. Additionally the updated plug placement software ensured accurate prediction of the cement plug top; that was confirmed by the actual tag of the plug. This paper will enlist the major analysis carried out on the unsuccessful plug jobs and highlight the different techniques that were adopted in the subsequent jobs to ensure successful placement and tagging of the cement plug. The paper will also focus on how the plug placement software's new additional features have made a significant contribution to this success story.