Using traditional slickline methods, it has not been possible to initiate chemical cutters, detonate perforating guns or any other explosive device, without using a preset pressure or temperature tool. These devices require a survey run and rely on well conditions remaining the same during the live perforating run. Once inside the preset operating window, the firing process is automatic. With these devices, the operation cannot be aborted unless the tool is removed from the operating window or the operating parameters are changed.

A new firing head has been developed that eliminates the parameter-gathering run and gives the operator total control, similar to that in electric-line perforating. This results in a safer operation that allows arming, firing and aborting the operation. The firing head uses field-proven technology and a slickline movement sensor. Safety is also improved by eliminating primary high explosives.

This paper covers the development of the firing head, from initial idea to field introduction, and includes discussion on operation and safety features. The case studies describe the first commercial operations in a southern North Sea field.

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