Improving Hole Quality and Casing-Running Performance in Riserless Top Holes: Deepwater Angola
- Thomas J. Akers (ExxonMobil Development Company)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Drilling & Completion
- Publication Date
- December 2009
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 484 - 497
- 2009. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 1.11.2 Drilling Fluid Selection and Formulation (Chemistry, Properties), 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control, 1.6.1 Drilling Operation Management, 4.5.10 Remotely Operated Vehicles, 1.5 Drill Bits, 1.6.10 Running and Setting Casing, 4.3.4 Scale, 1.6.2 Technical Limit Drilling, 4.3.1 Hydrates, 1.4.1 BHA Design, 4.5 Offshore Facilities and Subsea Systems, 3.3.2 Borehole Imaging and Wellbore Seismic, 1.11 Drilling Fluids and Materials, 1.12.1 Measurement While Drilling, 1.1.6 Hole Openers & Under-reamers, 1.6.1 Drilling Operation Management, 1.6.6 Directional Drilling, 1.6.5 Drilling Time Analysis, 1.10.1 Drill string components and drilling tools (tubulars, jars, subs, stabilisers, reamers, etc), 5.1.2 Faults and Fracture Characterisation, 2.7.1 Completion Fluids, 2.4.5 Gravel pack design & evaluation, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 2 Well Completion, 1.7.7 Cuttings Transport, 1.10 Drilling Equipment
- motors, riserless, topholes, micro-tortuosity, directional
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- 966 since 2007
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The operator and coventurers are developing several Angola Block 15 fields in water depths of up to 1400 m. To date, 83 development wells and 33 exploration/appraisal wells have been drilled in the block. Most have experienced hole quality issues in the riserless interval that are manifested as tight hole while tripping the bottomhole assembly (BHA) and as abnormal/excessive drag while running casing. In a few cases, casing could not be run to total depth (TD), and in one unfortunate case, the casing buckled in open water.
There has been uncertainty as to the root cause of the hole-quality issues that have been attributable to various factors since drilling was initiated. A review of available literature revealed very little published information on riserless drilling and casing-running practices. The operator undertook a study of its riserless drilling and casing-running practices to look for trends that may suggest certain sources as the root cause and to allow a re-examination of long-accepted practices. The study, combined with some new perspectives on directional-drilling mechanics, identified microtortuosity as the root cause of casing-running difficulties. Microtortuosity has been known to exist in deeper, more consolidated sediments. The study revealed that microtortuosity can also exist in large diameter holes drilled in soft sediments. Changes to drilling practices have resulted in improved riserless hole quality and smoother casing-running operations.
|File Size||1 MB||Number of Pages||14|
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