2006 MWD/LWD Services Directory

Aug. 1, 2006
This year’s MWD/LWD Services Directory updates and expands a worldwide directory of services in the measurement-while-drilling (MWD) and logging-while-drilling (LWD) markets.

Frank Hartley, Drilling/Production Editor

This year’s MWD/LWD Services Directory updates and expands a worldwide directory of services in the measurement-while-drilling (MWD) and logging-while-drilling (LWD) markets.

For quick and easy reference, the directory is divided into measurement groups, and then subdivided by company and service line. While there are exceptions to every “rule,” the following guidelines limit the number of exceptions for this year’s directory:

  • Independent measurement subs, or short tool joints, are listed as a single entry within their respective measurement categories. If the sub can be used with associated telemetry or other tools, it is listed again in the respective measurement group
  • Tools with multiple measurement capability are listed in each applicable measurement group
  • Independent measurement sub lengths are listed so the reader can combine desired components as needed
  • Only directional tools capable of greater than one-axis surveys were considered for the directory
  • Tool manufacturers were not included in this year’s directory. Only companies providing services in the measurement-while-drilling and/or logging-while-drilling market were included.

New tools and technologies

A number of new tools and technologies have been introduced in the last three years. Some of the more recent developments provide multiple real-time formation evaluation measurements for rapid and simplified analysis of complex geological data. These include formation density, neutron porosity, photoelectric factor, ultrasonic standoff and azimuthally focused density measurement; dual inflatable packers and the first pad-type formation tester to provide formation pressure measurements during drilling; a unique and versatile point-the-bit and push-the-bit design option; an MWD system designed for high temperature and high pressure (HT/HP) drilling; first seismic-while-drilling tool to deliver time/depth/velocity information; real-time gyro measurement for applications where magnetic interference is a problem; first slim-hole rotary steerable system; electromagnetic and mud-pulse telemetry to transmit and store data; a probe-based, dual-spaced propagation wave resistivity tool; and a new well placement technology tool. Each company describes its new entries below.

Baker Hughes Inteq

Inteq says it combines two LWD subs with multiple real-time formation evaluation measurements to analyze complex geological data. The LithoTrak service includes formation density, neutron porosity, photoelectric factor, ultrasonic standoff and azimuthally focused density measurements, and imaging. The subs gather data in high rates of penetration and in rotary closed-loop system drilling.

Other services include:

  • The OnTrak sensor sub integrates five sensors into one compact device and establishes the platform for all formation evaluation components in future bottomhole assemblies
  • The SoundTrak LWD sub provides real-time, wire- line-quality acoustic logging data for accurate reservoir evaluation
  • The TesTrak service has an intelligent control system based on FRA algorithms that tightly control the drawdown pump.

Halliburton/ Sperry Drilling Services

According to Sperry Drilling Services, new and enhanced capabilities have been added to its 8-in. and 9 1⁄2-in. GeoTap tools. These tools now have two draw-down chambers. Also, user-selectable draw-down rates and build-up times are available with all tool sizes.

Additionally, a 9 1⁄2-in. EWR-M5 propagation resistivity sensor (part of the integrated resistivity, gamma ray, annular pressure, and drillstring vibration package) now is available and includes the same measurements as the 8-in. tool.

In 2005, Halliburton acquired RST Inc, adding a new rotary steerable solution, the EZ-Pilot, to the Sperry Drilling Services family. This short, simple, and robust tool has been integrated with Sperry’s measurement-while-drilling system to improve directional reaction time via the near-bit inclination sensor in the EZ-Pilot. Running this tool in the point-the-bit mode exploits the ROP-enhancing benefits of extended gauge bit technology while it reduces drillstring vibration and provides superior borehole quality.

Noble Technology Services Division

A new 3D rotary steerable drilling tool for advanced directional drilling technology has been developed,” Noble Technology says. The Well Director provides directional drilling control, increased rates of penetration, and a smoother, less tortuous well bore. With MWD built in to the non-rotating housing, the tool’s near-bit sensors make continuous adjustments in azimuth and inclination to steer the well to the set targets.

Additionally, the company says a second generation rotary steerable with MWD sensors built in to the non-rotating housing was developed. The ExpressDrill tool, starting with the 4 3⁄4-in. design for 6 - 6 3⁄4-in. hole sizes, is powered by a mud driven turbine generator that has fewer mechanical parts.

PathFinder Energy Services

A new platform of high pressure, high temperature MLWD tools has been developed, PathFinder says. The SURVIVOR Suite tool incorporates HP/HT directional sensor and formation evaluation logging tools. These tools can operate in flow rates up to 2,000 GPM, pressures of 25,000 psi and temperatures of 175°C. This suite of tools includes the Slimhole Density/Neutron Standoff Caliper tool, the dual frequency Array Wave Resistivity tool and Slim AWR, the Dynamic Pressure Module, and a HP/HT directional and gamma ray tool that can run in four different configurations.

Other tools recently developed are:

Precision Energy Services

According to Precision, the Hostile Environment Logging MWD (HEL MWD) system is a completely new MWD system specifically designed for HT/HP drilling at up to 180oC and up to 30,000 psi. The HEL system operated effectively above its design limit at a world record of 184°C in a recent well in south Texas.

The company says the HEL system incorporates with the PrecisionLWD system, the multi-frequency resistivity sensor, the thermal neutron porosity sensor, and the azimuthal density sensor. A new addition is the spectral azimuthal gamma ray sensor which provides wireline-quality spectral data in the LWD environment. All sensors in the system operate at pressures up to 30,000 psi and flow rates up to 1,800 gal/min depending on hole size.


New-generation Scope-while-drilling services improve drilling performance and well placement says Schlumberger. This system quadruples the data transmission rate over the industry standard.

The family of Scope tools is:

  • The PeriScope 15 production enhancement technology is a proactive geosteering tool for directional or horizontal drilling that generates a 360° image and detects resistivity boundaries such as cap rock and fluid contacts up to 15 ft from the wellbore
  • The EcoScope multifunctional LWD has a pulsed neutron generator, plus drilling and formation evaluation sensors, incorporated into one 26-ft collar to provide a comprehensive measurement suite
  • The StethoScope formation pressure-while-drilling tool provides formation pressure measurements to improve efficiency and reduce the risk of drilling

Unidril Energy/Sondex Drilling

Unidril has consolidated its rental operations under the Sondex banner worldwide.

A new generation electro-magnetic transmission system is being introduced. While maintaining backward compatibility with existing Orienteer systems, E-Link is rolling out as part of the Orienteer 2 system which provides a 40% improvement in energy efficiency in a more robust, slimmer and shorter package.


On Aug. 31, 2005, Weatherford acquired Precision Drilling Corp.’s Energy Services and International Drilling divisions. This acquisition included the directional drilling, MWD, and LWD product lines. The 2006 Offshore MWD/LWD table reflects this change by moving the 2005 Precision product lines under the Weatherford name.

A new resistivity tool improves geosteering capabilities and log analysis results in deeply invaded reservoirs. The Multi-Frequency Resistivity Plus (MFR-Plus) tool makes phase and attenuation measurements at 2 MHz, 400 kHz, and 100 kHz at several different antenna-receiver spacings up to 80 in. The deep 100 kHz 80-in. measurement has a diameter of investigation of over 860 in. and has successfully been used to resolve true resistivity (Rt) in deeply invaded reservoir zones while being run in measurement-after-drilling mode.

In addition to this resistivity tool, a Rapid Annular Temperature (RAT) tool also was introduced. The RAT uses existing space in the bore and annular pressure (BAP) collar and measures the change in the annulus fluid temperature in real time. This gives a direct and nearly instantaneous measurement of formation fluid entering the wellbore while drilling.

The EM-HEL system was upgraded to include the Precision LWD product line, which uses electromagnetic telemetry and the full suite of high pressure LWD tools including MFR (resistivity), HAGR (gamma ray), TNP (thermal neutron porosity), and AZD (azimuthal density). The EM-HEL system provides drilling optimization and formation evaluation in underbalanced drilling conditions.

The following abbreviations are used in the directory:

AAPI - Apparent API
Accel. - Accelerometer
API - American Petroleum Institute
Azi. - Azimuth
DLS - Dogleg severity
EM - Electromagnetic
GTF - Gravity tool face
HF - High flow
Incl. - Inclination
LF - Low flow
Mag. - Magnetometer
MagF - Magnetic field
mpa - Magapascals
MTF - Magnetic tool face
n/a - Not applicable
NBI - Near bit inclination
OD - Outside diameter
Op. Sel. - Operator selectable
Opt. - Optional
RT - Rotary tool
Std. - Standard
TBD - To be determined
TF - Tool face
TGF - Total gravitational field
TMF - Total magnetic field

Footnotes explanation for following survey

(a) HDSM, CWRG, DNSC, CLSS, DPM, DFT, AWR tools are data-linked and may be configured in any order
(b) 2DRS is a stand-alone tool or run with any M/LWD system
(c) PathMaker is a stand-alone tool or run with any M/LWD system.

Unidrill Energy Co. Ltd.:
(c) Sentinel Shock and Vibration Measurement available for all Orienteer and Liberator tools
(d) TRIM resistivity
(e) 4 3/4, 6 3/4, 8, and 9 1/2 in. Orienteer strings retrievable only when run with positive pulse transmission system. Negative pulse system non-retrievable
(f) Pressure drop over +ve pulse Orienteer tools same as Liberator
(g) Provisional
(h) Orienteer steering tool option for 4 3/4, 6 3/4, 8, and 9 1⁄2-in. tools
(i) Higher temperature rating available on request.

Baker Hughes INTEQ:
(j) Dependent on mud weight, hydraulics, data transmission, and turbine selection
(k) All Directional accuracies are to 2 Sigma confidence
(l) All tool combinations require a Directional tool (D, OnTrak, or NaviTrak) as a basic component ex. D+LithoTrak+MPR = 69.4
(m) All generic and environment specifications are included in the directional category
(n) Basic AutoTrak configuration consists of near bit inclination + gamma ray + multiple propagation resistivity + vibration + directional sensor + modular connection
(o) Basic Navigator configuration consists of near bit inclination + gamma ray + multiple propagation resistivity + modular connection
(p) Static and dynamic WOB, TOB, bending moment, annular and bore pressure, string RPM, lateral and axial acceleration. Also includes motor RPM and downhole drilling dysfunction diagnostics
(z) Max DLS values are a function of various parameters such as BHA configuration, well profile, hole size, drilling mode (build, drop, and turn). For optimum tool capabilities and limits, company advice is required (BHASYSPro analysis), therefore, contact your BHI representative for a DLS calculation based on your BHA.

(q) Accelerometers for vibration and inclination at bit, strain gages for weight and torque, transducer for annular pressure
(r) Downhole neutron and gamma ray sources are wireline retrievable
(*) Variable transmission rates available as an option with Telemetry Systems
(*) Pressure drops are dependent on mud weight and tool configurations
(*) Rotating & Sliding Max DLS limitations listed are for infinite connection life
(*) Realtime update period are variable depending on tool string configurations.

Halliburton/ Sperry Drilling Services:
(s) The attributes of the pulser sub, negative or positive, and the central interface module sub are not included in data listed for individual measurement subs
(t) Length for EMT directional tool includes associated subs required for service
(u) Values for EBS are for standard collars; flexed collars are also used and their values are higher for the same nominal tool OD
(v) Special tool designs are rated for higher operating temperatures and pressures (HP: 22,500 psi or 25,000 psi). The negative pulsing system has no flow rate range; however, a maximum, tolerable mass flow rate is dictated by erosion concerns, and this limit varies by tool size and design
(w) The pressure drop stated for 8-in. tools is for those having a 1.92-in. ID. Some 8-in. tools have an optional larger ID (called 8-in. HF), which reduces the pressure drop and increases the maximum mass flow rate
(x) Pressure drop across the negative pulsing valve is the parameter of concern. This parameter is a function of mudflow rate, BHA, and mud properties.

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