Drilling & Production

Aug. 1, 2009

John Waggoner • Houston

SmartCoil wireless communicator makes splash

The new SmartCoil wireless communication system has been successfully deployed in its first coiled tubing applications. As reported byOffshore earlier this year, the new tool is the first to bring smart wireless technology to bottomhole assembly (BHA) communications.

The system instantly converts all Impact Guidance System (IGS) sensor data into real-time tools for use while logging, perforating, fishing, or during MLT operations. This lets operators analyze pressure, temperature, weight-on-bit (WOB), torque, inclination, CCL, gamma ray, and impact forces without pulling the coil string to surface.

Here is a summary of the first installations in June and July:

  • BP used the tool for real-time analysis during installation of a venturi device over a 12-hr period, achieving data recovery for pressure, temperature, inclination, and WOB at a rate of 300 sec. for a complete data package. Total depth of communication was 16,500 ft (5,029 m) in a highly deviate well
  • BP later used the tool for real-time analysis of milling operations in diesel to remove an "XN" nipple profile at a total depth of communication of 14,000 ft (4,267 m) in a highly deviate well
  • BP planned well intervention to monitor complete coiled tubing operation during nine installations with the tool
  • An operator in Qatar deployed the tool to monitor acid stimulation, with data collected on pressure, temperature and inclination at a total depth of communication of 15,500 ft (4,724 m) in a highly deviated well
  • An operator in Saudi Arabia used the tool for a planned stimulation program to monitor primarily inclination for lateral entry identification prior to acid treatment, pressure, and temperature.

Southeast Asia sees capillary service firsts

BJ Services Co. reports it used proprietary capillary systems for the first time in the Philippines, offshore Thailand, and Indonesia for flow assurance reasons.

Hydrate dissolution, deliquification, and scale-inhibition services were included in the operations, the company says.

Offshore Kalimantan, Indonesia, BJ Services re-established communication and restored production in two deepwater wells with hydrate plugging at more than 1,000 ft (300 m). Attempts to restore production by bullheading chemicals failed, and communication with the wellbores was lost. BJ ran 3/8-in. capillary tubing to the depth of the plugs and dissolved the hydrates with minimal rig-up and pumping time.

"Our capillary units help return wells to profitable production in less time by eliminating the need for conventional workover rigs, large recovery crews, and other more costly and time-consuming alternatives," says Fred Toney, BJ Services' vice president for chemical services.

BJ Services' fleet of capillary equipment uses small-diameter (1/4-, 3/8-, and 5/8-in.) tubing and live well delivery systems, suited for small rigs and platforms with space constraints. The tubing is installed to a depth adjacent to the perforations or to the desired treatment zone and hung off from the wellhead.

This enables simple, cost-efficient delivery of production chemicals or stimulation fluids at precise downhole depths. Installation and chemical injection often is completed in hours. In some cases, capillary tubing is used as a treatment string to deliver acids or other treatment fluids.

Logan releases new 15,000 psi casing patch

Logan's new 15,000 psi high-pressure casing patches are designed to repair damaged casing in high-pressure environments. Rated for 15,000-psi (103 MPa) working pressure, the Logan 15K psi High Pressure Casing Patch can seal internal and external pressure without restricting the bore's internal diameter, according to the company. Once installed, the patch restores integrity to the casing and becomes a permanent part of the string, the company says.

Major load bearing components are manufactured of alloy steel. A top sub, bowl and cut-lipped guide, and optional extensions make up the outer components of the assembly. Internal components include a basket grapple control, basket grapple, four Type L high-pressure packer sets, and a packer protector with shear pins.

A longer-than-standard basket grapple engages more of the casing to provide additional pull load. High-pressure packers are a blend of synthetic rubber and Kevlar that is compatible for service with most drilling and completion fluids, and is resistant to gas invasion and abrasion. For maximum top-to-bottom patch integrity, two inverted packers provide sealing in both directions. The packers are covered fully by a packer protector to guard against damage when engaging the casing into the patch. The packer protector is secured by shear pins that break when subjected to excess stress when the casing contacts the packer protector.

Typically, the seal assembly is a two-piece device consisting of a seal and a non-extrusion ring. The new Logan design features a three-piece seal assembly comprised of an elastomeric seal, a seal protector/seal backup, and a non-extrusion ring.

Proper preparation of the casing to be patched is important to the success of the 15K psi Logan High Pressure Casing Patch. First, the damaged casing and the casing above the damaged section must be removed. The top of the casing stub then is dressed with a milling tool and the casing is washed over to remove scale and burrs. After the pipe is sized to give a uniform sealing surface, the properly assembled Casing Patch is lowered slowly with slow rotation to the top of the fish.

Once the fish is in the casing patch, the string is slacked off with slow rotation until the packer protector bottoms against the shoulder in the top sub. When the casing is fully engaged in the patch, a tensile load is applied to the casing patch to set the basket grapple. Slips then are set on the running string. Finally, the patch is tested. The mud pumps are engaged slowly so as not to slug the packers and the pressure is brought to the test level.

The Logan 15K psi High Pressure Casing Patch adapts to standard casing diameters and can handle the full tolerances of various API casing manufacturers. Depending on operation requirements, the patch can be run with or without 5-ft (1.5-m), alloy steel, extension subs. Logan 15K psi High Pressure Casing Patches for H2S (sour service) are available.

Chinese NOCs take $1.3-billion stake offshore Angola

CNOOC and SINOPEC of China have agreed to purchase an undivided 20% participating interest in the Production Sharing Contract and Joint Operating Agreement in block 32 offshore Angola from Marathon International Petroleum Angola Block 32. Marathon will maintain a 10% interest in the block.

The deal is a major step forward for the Chinese national oil companies (NOCs) as a resource play in one of the world's most active areas offshore.

The $1.3-billion deal is expected to close by the end of the year, subject to government and regulatory approvals. For transfer of working interests in Angola, the concessionaire and other block 32 partners have rights of first refusal.

Twelve previously announced discoveries on block 32 include: Gindungo, Canela, Cola, Gengibre, Mostarda, Salsa, Caril, Manjericao, Louro, Cominhos, Colorau, and Alho. Conceptual development studies are under way in order to establish the feasibility of a first development area in the central southeastern part of the block.

Angolan NOC Sonangol is concessionaire for the block. Total Exploration and Production Angola serves as operator with a 30% interest; Sonangol P&P holds a 20% interest; Esso Exploration and Production Angola holds a 15% interest; and Petrogal holds a 5% interest.

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