Abstract

With current offshore drilling tenders limited to small durations and high Managed Pressure Drilling (MPD) equipment rental costs, a team of industry partners has embarked on an innovative, cost effective, and efficient approach to upgrade a drilling fleet to be "MPD Ready". The core of this new approach is an integrated MPD package that can be transferred from rig to rig with minimal time and effort; while sharing the cost of the MPD equipment across multiple wells and/or rigs. With rig integration piping already installed on multiple vessels, the integrated MPD package can be installed as "plug and play" modules allowing multiple rigs in the same region to be "MPD Ready" within days. For a four rig program cost savings of over 50% are possible on initial investment cost. To further the cost effectiveness of MPD, the parties are working together to integrate the drilling control system with the MPD control system, further enhancing the efficiency of rig operations. The drilling control system will incorporate a functionality to automate any procedure and will be able to seamlessly work with a variety of other programs such as hydraulic models. Recognizing the importance of well trained crews, developing a training program that teaches the rig personnel how to operate and maintain the equipment has been integral to this MPD approach. This program paired with the equipment manufacturer bringing rig personnel into their facilities to facilitate hands on maintenance and operation training will provide the crews with confidence to run the MPD package effectively. In doing this, the overall number of crew required to operate and maintain the MPD equipment will be drastically reduced.

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