According to Wikipedia, "mechatronics" is the synergistic combination of mechanical engineering, electronic engineering, computer engineering, control engineering, and systems design engineering in order to design, and manufacture useful products. The combination of these technologies is now actively being used to enhance the safety of drilling operations.

This paper presents an overview of how mechatronics is now used in the oil & gas industry to significantly enhance the safety of drilling operations. In the drilling industry this technology is known as managed pressure drilling.

Automating the control of bottom hole pressures whilst drilling the well significantly enhances the safety of the drilling operation. Using control technology combined with accurate sensors and additional equipment when drilling provides an unprecedented level of detection and control of the well whilst it is being drilled. This in turn enhances the efficiency and safety of the drilling operations.

This technology has been used on a number of high pressure high temperature wells and it is now being used on deepwater wells to provide early kick detection as well as riser gas handling.

This paper demonstrates the use of mechatronics in the drilling process and the applications of managed pressure drilling in deepwater and high pressure wells.

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