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March/April

Shell addresses human factors, technology limits to deploy MPD on exploratory HPHT campaign

The first deployment of a managed pressure drilling (MPD) application in an exploratory high-pressure and high-temperature (HPHT) drilling campaign in the Niger Delta was truncated by a significant kick incident. The plan for the MPD deployment entailed drilling the HP interval with a bottomhole pressure (BHP) or set point that is equivalent to the maximum pore pressure prognosis...

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Drilling Ahead: Digital transformation kicks into high gear on offshore rigs

On 22 February, Noble Corp announced that it had launched, in collaboration with GE, the world’s first digital drilling vessel. It is a remarkable milestone in the drilling industry’s ongoing digital revolution as offshore drilling contractors – still plagued by a weak market and miserable dayrates – seek innovative and sustainable methods of cost reduction...

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Perspectives: Izwan Megat, UMW Oil and Gas: Engaging with people at the rig site is critical for safety because ‘safety is managing people’

Although Izwan Megat had always liked working with his hands and even earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Tulsa in 1999, it wasn’t until he landed his first job that he learned what mechanical engineering was truly about. “I went to the drafting room at this small manufacturing company in Pryor, Okla., and started making all these sketch drawings of bandsaws, which is what this company produced. But once I was done, the president of company told me to take those drawings and go build them,” Mr Megat recalled...

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Drill bit innovations target major barriers to ROP, durability

Although a drill bit is but one component of a large and complex drilling system, it can have an outsized impact on the efficiency of a drilling operation. “While the amount of money spent on drill bits may be less than 1% of the total cost of the well, it can really be argued that no single component contributes more to the overall drilling performance,” said Wiley Long, Bits and Drilling Tools Product Champion at Smith Bits, a Schlumberger company...

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Digital solutions guide path to better accuracy in directional drilling

The global directional drilling services market has taken a big hit during this downturn. In terms of market value, directional drilling fell from $16.55 billion in 2014 to $10.95 billion in 2015, then shrank further in 2016 to just $6.71 billion. Most of these reductions were brought about by project cancellations in the low oil price environment, according to Rajashekar Lokam, Research Analyst at Mordor Intelligence...

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MPD vs underbalanced drilling: 10 ways they differ in operational strategy and implementation

The petroleum drilling industry drills many well sections using some type of unconventional drilling technique (UDT). A drilling operation is a UDT if it does not follow the conventional drilling method as done in the majority of cases. Conventional drilling utilizes a single-phase drilling fluid, which works on the premise of keeping an overbalanced pressure at the sand face. It discourages influx from a reservoir while drilling or when drilling stops for any other operation. Conventional drilling is also an open-loop operation, where the returned fluid from the well is directed to a flowline that is open to atmosphere...

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Drilling & Completion Tech Digest

GE and Noble Corp have launched the world’s first digital drilling vessel, targeted to achieve 20% operational expenditure reduction across the targeted equipment and improve drilling efficiency. The project aims to unlock the potential of digital solutions for offshore drilling operations...

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