Virtual Reality application to technology developments, training and operative follow-up is quite common today. In drilling applications, Virtual Reality is typically dedicated to rig crew training on physical Drilling Simulators[5] and to maintenance preparation and support. Recently drilling department interest is focusing on the capacity to simulate well response in specific drilling situation and events, in order to support operation follow-up, planning and preparation.

Eni, starting from a consolidated development of a virtual drilling environment for training immersion with impact on: rig & equipment knowledge, operation know-how/preparation/planning and safety awareness, has also begun the qualification of a new system for well full digital twin reproduction.

In collaboration with Saipem a last generation semi-sub rig for deep water drilling operation was initially fully virtualized, integrating four main modules: walk-through rig and equipment, operation play back, safety interaction and well simulation. The System includes a field database of 300 drilled wells, the extension to a number of drilling rigs and is now easily accessible on PC, in dedicated 3D-rooms and by suitable virtual reality headsets for immersive experience in collaborative environment. As a second step, the qualification of a full digital twin system was started in order to include interaction of the well simulator with well advisory systems and drilling automation developments. This paper gives a description of both the new training goals and the integration of the new system in the well design and operation follow-up process.


It is common knowledge that the world is undergoing a process of significant digital transformation. This is happening mainly for three reasons: enhanced big data availability and storage capacity, real world modelling improvement and significant speed up of processing and communication time.

At the beginning of this century, the concept of "digital twin" was created [3]. A digital twin is a virtual ideal of a real process or object, by which it is possible to build a real time loop between virtual simulation and reality, in order to increase safety and efficiency, while decreasing costs. In particular, the use of a digital twin of reality is particularly worth in case of a complex system that usually pose big challenges due to uncertainties and unpredictable events occurring during system lifecycle [2, 7, 8 ].

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