Monitoring Torque and Drag effects in real time has been done for some time now in the oil industry. However, the service is still used only in a small percentage of the total drilling hours and the analyzing techniques used are quite diverse.
The real-time Torque and Drag technique described in this paper is in many ways advantageous compared to the precalculated hook load (HKLD) and surface torque comparison techniques typically used in the industry. Several delimiters are filtered out of the equation and current drilling conditions are used automatically and directly in the calculations and evaluations. Monitoring Torque and Drag in the described way gives direct information on current down hole drilling conditions and predicts upcoming situations. This allows the driller to go closer to the limit of the drillstring load capacity in a controlled manner, thereby optimizing tool use whilst maintaining safety on the rig.
Combined monitoring of Torque and Drag and the Equivalent Circulating Density (ECD) shows clear correlations, and gives additional information on hole cleaning conditions. The technique also helps to optimize reaming programs - reaming correctly and only when necessary -, to save rig time and improve weight transfer.
Monitoring Torque and Drag in real time is part of a service package that analyzes the available data at the rig-site and converts them into valuable information. This information is subsequently used to improve well profitability by optimizing drilling efficiency and increasing well productivity.