Different index parameters are used for quick assessment of mechanical properties of rocks in civil, soil and rock mechanical applications. These index parameters provide valuable information regarding material toughness, abrasion resistance, durability, strength, etc under different forces of interactions and environmental conditions. The sized bridging materials (SBMs) used in drill-in fluid design belongs to rock family and thus any rock mechanical parameters such as UCS, tensile strength, shear strength, etc can be used for mechanical characterization of SBMs to select the best and reject the worst. However, due to granular size of the SBMs with a typical particle size of below 2000 microns, the conventional rock mechanical parameters are not applicable for assessing the toughness and durability of SBMs. Hence, an appropriate index parameter is needed to assess the toughness and durability of SBMs to select the best SBMs for superior drill-in fluid formulation. This paper describes an index parameter defined as Bridging Material Stability Index (BMSI) for quick and reliable assessment of the toughness and durability of SBMs.

Empirical results indicate strong relation of the index parameter with the quality of the SBMs and thus provide a quantitative means for quality control and quality assurance of SBMs. Statistical analyses of the coefficient of variation of BMSI indicate significantly lower coefficient of variation compared to common rock mechanical parameters such as compressive strength, tensile strength and shear strength parameters.

The application of the index parameter will allow selecting the best and rejecting the worst SBMs for superior drill-in fluid formulations and thus expected to play a pivotal role in reducing formation damage and enhancing well productivity.

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