Abstract

One of the major challenges when drilling gas wells in offshore fields is to drill under high pressure and in a loss circulation zone in intermediate hole sections. Heavy mud is used to control the pore pressure in a narrow operational window that creates losses and, as a consequence, well control issues. Several solutions/ideas have been implemented while drilling this intermediate section, including a thermal-activated resin, rigid rapid fluid treatment, used to regain full circulation and successfully increase the window gradient.

The solution to these challenges was developed by designing a fast setting, thermal-activated resin LCM liquid plug with a density equal to 152 pcf. This new treatment slurry was able to be bullheaded and displaced with a polymer mud 152 pcf. The slurry was easily pumped through drill pipe, measurement while drilling (MWD) and drill bits.

This paper presents case histories and field applications of this novel polymer-based lost circulation material, for successful treatment of heavy mud losses to formation in wells in offshore gas fields in the Middle East. The paper also includes a discussion of the methodology, material properties and applications.

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