Automated controls for coil tubing unit

Coil tubing unit (CTU) operations are now largely automated with the rollout of Merlin Control System from NOV Hydra Rig.

Offshore staff

HOUSTON -- Coil tubing unit (CTU) operations are now largely automated with the rollout of Merlin Control System from NOV Hydra Rig.

Design modifications include:
• Injector head control hydraulic control manifolds now have six hoses in the bundle, down from 15
• A powerful backpressure system automatically counters any change in downhole conditions via twin motors mounted inside the reel
• Components each have their own computer and recognizable ID.

The computer system communicates failure to the operator via sophisticated CTES Orion and Cerberus DAS hardware.

An important innovation is Merlin's "self-troubleshooting" feature that monitors the system and notifies the operator of any problem. The system is automated to respond with touch-screen interface and joystick override.

Since each component in the system is recognized by part name and number, the operator already knows exactly what intervention is called for. Most of the mundane functions have been automated, with precise auto drill functions to reduce operator fatigue.

04/01/2009

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