CATEGORIZED | News

Kick detection at top of Petrobras philosophy for MPD

Posted on 12 April 2011

Petrobras’ first field trial with MPD used a small onshore rig with a kelly rather than a top drive. By the second field trial, the company had switched the rig out for one with a top drive.

Petrobras’ first field trial with MPD used a small onshore rig with a kelly rather than a top drive. By the second field trial, the company had switched the rig out for one with a top drive.

Emmanuel Franco Nogueira, senior petroleum engineer for Petrobras, presented his company’s experience with MPD and what the technology means for Petrobras during a presentation at the 2011 IADC/SPE Managed Pressure Drilling & Underbalanced Operations Conference & Exhibition last week in Denver, Colo. “The Petrobras philosophy for MPD first is kick detection. Maybe we can change this in the future, but so far, it’s kick detection, and also to help us on complex wells,” Mr Nogueira said.

Since discussions began with Secure Drilling in 2004, Petrobras has embarked on several field trials of MPD systems, Mr Nogueira said, starting with simple wells and moving progressively into more complexity. “The goal of the first two tests was to evaluate the performance of MPD in a high-temperature environment … because the main question is, are those electronics going to survive the high temperatures?”

The first field trial was conducted on an onshore exploratory well using a small kelly-operated rig and a water-based mud system. The well provided information on the impact of pipe movement on flow and flow measurements and confirmed the benefits of using a top drive versus a kelly due to the wear life of the element in the rotating control device, Mr Nogueira said.

With the second field trial, Petrobras switched to a rig with a top drive to drill the 8 ½-in. and 12 ¼-in. sections of a development well. It took 44 days to drill 2,372 meters.

On the third field trial, problems were encountered in the deep well, and it took approximately 130 days to drill the 8 ½-in. and 12 ¼-in. sections (3,900 meters). The system was able to detect a gas influx, which was controlled on surface.

The fourth field trial involved a jackup, drilling an exploratory well in a field where five exploratory wells had been drilled previously. However, in those five wells, “they couldn’t get any good information because they were so overbalanced,” Mr Nogueira said.

With good ECD management, it took approximately 50 days to drill 1,507 meters in the 8 ½-in. section, which was extended 500 meters from the original plan. Whereas previous operations used 12-ppg mudweight, this well used 9.7-ppg mud (later increased to 10.3 ppg after a confirmed kick). Nonproductive time on previous wells were also very high, and it was reduced on this well, he said.

Currently, Petrobras is looking at using MPD in the Santos Basin. “We have some very tough wells here,” Mr Nogueira said, referring to the basin’s pre-salt area. An exploratory well deploying MPD is expected to be spud by the end of June 2011 using Diamond Offshore’s Ocean Baroness semi. It will be located in shallow-water depths in Santa Catarina State’s Ilha do Macuco. The HPHT well is planned for 6,300 meters total depth.

“MPD is a good tool and will help not only Petrobras but all the companies,” Mr Nogueira summarized, adding that Petrobras is also looking to take MPD into deepwater in the future.

Leave a Reply

*

FEATURED MICROSITES


Recent Drilling News

  • 17 December 2014

    Saudi Aramco: Four factors for a sustainable drilling business

    Despite the modest growth in demand and drop in oil prices today, the long-term outlook for industry is healthy. “Our industry will need to add around 40 million bbl per day for new capacity...

  • 16 December 2014

    Ensco development program produces driller in 3 years

    Ensco’s Accelerated Development Program (ADP) takes a “green” individual and, within a three-year period, trains them to become a driller. In response to personnel shortages in various areas, including drilling...

  • 16 December 2014

    Saudi Aramco: ‘Industry cannot afford to lose talent when the economy is down’

    Industry is facing a human resources challenge in two areas: the ageing workforce and the shortage of skills, Mohammed Al Sellemi...

  • 16 December 2014

    Nanotechnology has potential to improve tool performance in extreme environments

    In terms of temperature stability and corrosion, tools have limitations, especially in extremely challenging drilling environments. Jothibasu Ramasamy...

  • 16 December 2014

    Colville: WCI provides forum to evaluate practical, economical advances in well control practices

    Major players throughout industry are joining forces under the Well Control Institute (WCI). The mandate of WCI is “to provide the definitive forum...

  • Read more news