Drilling long horizontal and multilateral wells in the oil industry helps lower the drawdown, and minimize water or gas coning, which enhances well productivity. Many of these wells are drilled using drill-in fluid (DIF), which is cleaner than conventional mud and so is considered to be less damaging to the formation. The DIF consists of polymers for building the required viscosity to transport cuttings and deposit a filter cake around the wellbore to reduce fluid loss. Most DIFs are composed of starch, cellulose or Xanthan polymers added with bridging agents of calcium carbonates and salt particles.
Even though DIF causes less formation damage than conventional mud, damage to target formations can still occur. To remove formation damage caused by DIF, a new chemical technology is tested. The new chemical technology, which breaks up the coherence and integrity of the mudcake and polymer gel, was used for wellbore cleanup with very encouraging results. In addition, the chemical is also an eco-friendly, noncorrosive bio-enzyme and is naturally biodegradable. The chemical disintegrates into its natural elements (carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen) after converting the insoluble polymers into water soluble sugars. In addition, the chemical minimizes formation of wormholes like in acid, which helps in keeping the wellbore away from getting connected to fractures/fissures.
This paper highlights the technological advantage of using the enzyme based chemical and how homogenous wellbore cleanup/stimulation is achieved, leading to productivity enhancement and sustainable oil production.