Abstract

Exploration focus is moving into deeper targets of high pressure and high temperature (HPHT) regime due to the ever-increasing energy demand of China. Overpressure and wellbore instability related problems in such setting are mainly associated with narrow drilling margin resulting in severe well control incidents and increased drilling cost. In order to reduce drilling risks and operation costs, an accurate geomechanical model is necessary. The model provides technical support for drilling process and minimum reservoir damage due to optimal mud weight program. Well-scale (1D) Mechanical Earth Model (MEM) is constructed on the offset wells which consist of rock strength properties and stress profile by incorporating all available data including open hole log data, geomechanical core lab results, LOT/FIT, direct pore pressure measurements and drilling events. Furthermore, 3D geomechanics model is generated using available well-scale MEM data in the field and distributed throughout the field which guided by seismic interpretation data as distribution control. The 3D geomechanical model is used to design mud weight and casing program for the upcoming well. The offset wells in the study areas were drilled through complex geological settings with high overpressure (13500 psi) and high temperature (200-220 deg C). Therefore, drilling operations is also risky with different types of drilling events encountered frequently including stuck pipe, inflow, losses and connection gas etc. With 3D geomechanical model as the foundation, the integrated approach helps ultra-deep wells to reduce serious wellbore instability caused by abnormal formation pressure, wellbore collapse and other complex drilling problems. The implementation of systematic and holistic workflow has proven to be extremely successful in supporting the drilling of HPHT wells in China. The integrated solution has been applied in the ultra-deep well, recorded an improvement in ROP by 35.3% and decrease no-productive time (NPT) by 25.3% compared with offset well. The geomechanical approach provides a convenient means to assist field engineers in the optimization of mud weight, risk assessment, and evaluation of HPHT wells drilling performance. The findings will provide reference and guideline for de-risk and performance improvement in HPHT wells drilling.

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