This paper proposes a methodical structure to embody current expertise for the analysis of drilling data. This structure is based on two aspects: (1) the review of published literature, representative of present-to-day efforts to perform such tasks and (2) the use of the Methodological Pyramid Concept, to illustrate what elements typify a methodology.

The review of published works revealed that several key aspects of the analysis of drilling data are not clear, for example:

  1. Actual use of drilling data is still unclear and under debate;

  2. Most of the available engineering tools limit the range of applications to drilling performance estimators;

  3. The proposed methods of analysis vary depending upon the needs of individual organizations or processes using the concept of "method and methodology" indistinctly;

  4. Various sets of concept and theories from internal and external sources of drilling engineering knowledge have been used to develop existing methods and engineering tools.

Under this scenario, it seems that more effort is needed to unify current approaches to analyze drilling data i.e. within the scope of an independent field with common goals, theories, methods and tools that can support the decision-making process. For this purpose, the methodological pyramid was chosen as a convenient model to outline these efforts. By allocating some of the reviewed approaches within the elements of such a pyramid, and contrasting their different ideas where necessary, a Methodology for Drilling Analysis was formalized. It is believed that this methodology is a convenient framework for defining the goals and scope for an area of drilling expertise named Drilling Analysis and the evolving future role of the Drilling Analyst.

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