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FE 02-09 Intro to Drilling Fluids

FE 02-09 Intro to Drilling Fluids

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Published by: Wilman Casallas on Jul 24, 2011
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Drilling Fluids

Circulatory System

Mud Engineer
‡ Mix the drilling fluid ‡ Maintain the properties of the drilling fluid ‡ Inventory management of mud chemicals and supply

Functions of Drilling Fluid
1. Remove drilled cuttings from the borehole 2. Carry and release the cuttings at the surface 3. Suspend cuttings and weight material in suspension when circulation is stopped 4. Release cuttings when processed by surface equipment 5. Allow cuttings to settle out at the surface

Functions of Drilling Fluid
6. Control subsurface pressures 7. Prevent the borehole from collapsing or caving in 8. Protect producing formations from damage that could impair production 9. Clean, cool, and lubricate the drill bit and drillstring. This is the simplest and one of the most essential duties of drilling mud

without damage to the circulation system or upon the formation adjacent to the hole .Do everything.Ensure maximum information from the formation drilled 13.Seal porous and permeable zones with an impermeable filter cake 11.Help support part of the weight of the drillstring/casing 12.Functions of Drilling Fluid 10.

Drilling Fluid Properties ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Mud weight Viscosity Gel strength Water loss .

Mud Weight ‡ MW must be sufficient to contain subsurface pressures and to prevent the formation from caving in ‡ Not practical or economical to have the mud weight too high ± Low ROP ± Fracturing of weak formation -> lost circulation .

Mud Weight: Effect on Mud Logging ‡ Excessive MW -> might cause a loss of circulation -> possible contamination or loss of cuttings ‡ MW < Pore Pressure -> kick or sloughing of hole or even worse stuck pipe -> loss of samples or abundant cavings .

fractures ± Enlarged hole size ± Excessive mud weight ‡ Terms used to describe degree of loss: ± Seepage ± Partial lost returns / circulation ± Total lost returns / circulation .Lost Circulation ‡ The lack of drilling fluid returning to the surface after being pumped down a well ‡ Due to: ± Fissures. caverns.

Viscosity ‡ It is the resistance to flow ‡ It affects the ability of the drilling fluid to lift the cuttings out of the borehole ‡ It is dependent on the amount and character of the suspended solids ‡ Measured in the field using a Marsh Funnel ‡ The measurement of Funnel Viscosity is sec/qt (seconds per quart) .

Gel Strength ‡ Refers to the ability of the drilling fluid to develop a gel as soon as it stops moving ‡ Determined with a Fann VG (Viscosity/Gel) Meter ‡ Expressed in lbs/100ft2 ‡ Its purpose is to suspend the cuttings and mud solids (weight material) in the borehole and not permit them to settle around the bit when circulation is halted ‡ Gel strength should be low enough to ± ± ± ± Allow the cuttings to be removed at the surface Permit entrained gas to be removed at the surface Minimize swabbing when the pipe is pulled from the borehole Permit starting of circulation without high pump pressures .

the entrained gas may be recycled several times.Effects of Gel Strength On Mud Logging ‡ If the viscosity or gel strength (or both) is too high. ‡ Fine cuttings may be held in suspension so they cannot be removed at the shale shakers and settling pits. . Also. Swabbing of the borehole may also introduce extraneous gas anomalies. cuttings consisting of clays or other dispersible material may be dissolved. thus recycling and contaminating the cuttings samples.

making it difficult to interpret wireline logs .Water Loss ‡ Control of the filtration rate (water loss) is necessary for two reasons: ± A poor quality filter cake may cause excessive water loss and produce an excessively thick filter cake ± High water loss can cause deep invasion of the formations.

Pressure Control Terminology ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Hydrostatic Pressure Pressure Gradient Equivalent Mud Weight Pore Pressure .

519 x MW (lbs/gal) x TVD (feet) ± Hp or P (bars) = 0.0981 x MW (g/cc) x TVD (meters) .Hydrostatic Pressure ‡ The pressure that exists due to the mud weight and vertical depth of the column of fluid ‡ The size and shape of the fluid column have no effect ‡ Formula used: ± Hp or P (psi) = 0.

446 psi/ft .0519 x MW ‡ Typical formation water density used is 8.6 ppg yielding a pressure gradient of 0.Pressure Gradient ‡ It is the rate of change of hydrostatic pressure with depth for any given unit of fluid weight ‡ Formula: ± Pressure Gradient = 0.

MWe = Equivalent MW. MWo = Original MW.Equivalent Mud Weight ‡ The mud weight that would exert a hydrostatic pressure equal to the sum of the imposed pressure and the hydrostatic pressure ‡ Used interchangeably with Equivalent Circulating Density (ECD) ‡ Calculated by DLS computer using Power Law ‡ MWe = MWo + Pi/(0. Pi = imposed pressure .0519 x TVD) ± where.

Pore Pressure ‡ Pore pressure is the pressure that is exerted by fluids contained in the pore space of the rock and is the strict meaning of what is generally referred to as formation pressure .

Types of Drilling Fluids (EDIT2) ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Water-based muds Oil-based muds Synthetic muds Air. Gas. Mist systems .

Types of Water-based Muds (NEW2) ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Non-dispersed Dispersed Calcium-treated Polymer muds Low-solids Saltwater .

. ‡ Thinners and dispersants are not added to disperse drill solids and clay particles.Non-Dispersed (NEW2) ‡ Include spud muds. natural muds and other lightly treated systems generally used for shallow wells or top-hole drilling.

Potassium-containing chemicals are frequently used to provide greater shale inhibition. .Dispersed (NEW2) ‡ Muds are often dispersed by deflocculants / filtrate reducers (typically lignosulfonates. lignites or tannins).

and to prevent formation damage. ‡ Hydrated lime (calcium hydroxide). gypsum (calcium sulfate) and calcium chloride are principal ingredients of calcium systems. . ‡ Calcium treated muds resist salt and anhydrite contamination but are susceptible to gelation and solidification at high temperatures.Calcium-treated (NEW2) ‡ High levels of soluble calcium are used to control sloughing shale and hole enlargement.

‡ Most polymers have temperature limits below 300[degrees]F. highmolecular-weight polymers are utilized to either encapsulate drill solids to prevent dispersion and coat shales for inhibition.Polymers (NEW2) ‡ Muds incorporating generally long-chain. but under certain conditions. may be used in wells with appreciably higher BHTs. . or for increasing viscosity and reducing fluid loss ‡ These systems normally contain a minimum amount of bentonite and may be sensitive to divalent cations such as calcium and magnesium.

‡ Low solids systems typically use polymer additive as a viscosifier or bentonite extender and are nondispersed. .Low Solids (NEW2) ‡ Total solids should not range higher than about 6% to 10% by volume. Clay solids should be some 3% or less and exhibit a ratio of drilled solids to bentonite of less than 2:1. ‡ One primary advantage of low-solids systems is that they significantly improve drilling penetration rate.

‡ Saturated salt systems have a chloride concentration near 190. The lower levels are usually referred to as brackish or seawater systems.Saltwater Systems (NEW2) ‡ Saltwater systems have a chloride content of 10.000 mg/l. ‡ Saltwater muds are usually prepared from brackish. seawater or produced-water sources. .000 mg/l (saturated) and are used to drill salt formations.000 to 190.

Components of a Water-Based Mud ‡ Continuous liquid phase of water in which clay materials are suspended ‡ Reactive solids ‡ Inert solids .

Water-Based Mud: Water Component ‡ Either: fresh or saltwater ‡ Seawater commonly used in offshore drilling ‡ Saturated saltwater is used for shale inhibition and drilling thick evaporite sequences .

Water-Based Mud: Reactive Solids Component ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Clays (³gel´) Dispersants Filtration Control Agents Detergents. Emulsifiers and Lubricants Defoamers Sodium and Calcium compounds .

for saltwater muds ± Natural formation clays that hydrate and enter the mud system . gel strength and water loss Common clays are: ± Bentonite .Reactive Solids: Clays ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Basic material of mud Sometimes referred to as ³gel´ Affects viscosity.for fresh water muds ± Attapulgite .

Reactive Solids: Dispersants/Deflocculants ‡ Reduce viscosity by adsorption onto clay particles. reducing flocculation ‡ Also aid in filtration control since filtration problems are related to flocculation .

Flocculation ‡ Thickening of the mud due to the attraction of clay platelets in the mud ‡ Causes: ± High active solids concentration ± High electrolyte concentration ± High temperature ‡ Detected by: ± Abnormally high yield point ± Abnormally high gel strength .

Examples of Dispersants ‡ Tannins (extracted from the quebracho and hemlock trees) ‡ Phosphates (up to depths <175 F BHT) ‡ Lignite ‡ Lignosulphonates (obtained from spent sulfite liquor generated during paper manufacturing) .

Reactive Solids: Filtration Control Agents ‡ Control the amount of water loss into permeable formations by ensuring the development of a firm impermeable filter cake ‡ Commonly used filtration control agents: ± Starch (used in muds with high salt content) ± Sodium Carboxy-Methyl Cellulose (CMC) ± Polymers .

Emulsifiers and Lubricants ‡ Assist in cooling and lubricating ‡ Also used for a spotting fluid in order to free stuck pipe .Reactive Solids: Detergents.

Reactive Solids: Defoamers ‡ Used to prevent mud foaming at the surface in mud tanks or surface cleaning equipment .

‡ Calcium Compounds inhibit formation clays and prevent them from hydrating or swelling. .Reactive Solids: Sodium and Calcium Compounds ‡ Sodium Compounds precipitate or suppress calcium or magnesium that decreases the yield of the clays.

) ‡ Anti-friction Material .Water-Based Mud: Inert Solids Component ‡ Weight Material ‡ Lost Circulation Material (L.M.C.

Inert Solids: Weight Material ‡ Finely ground. high-density minerals held in suspension to control mud density ‡ Common weight materials are: ± Barite ± Hematite ± Galena .

fine. mica (fine. coarse Reinforcing Plugs: bentonite with diesel oil (gunk). leather fiber Granular: walnut shells (nut plug). the zone must be cemented off ‡ Common LCM materials: ± ± ± ± Fibrous: wood fiber. coarse Flakes: cellophane. time setting clays. attapulgite and granular (squeeze) . medium.Inert Solids: Lost Circulation Material ‡ Used to plug the lost circulation zone ‡ If none of the LCM materials successfully plug the lost circulation zone.

Inert Solids: Anti-Friction Material ‡ To reduce torque and decrease the possibility of differential sticking ‡ More frequently it is used on high angle directional wells. where torque and differential sticking are a problem ‡ Most frequently used materials are inert polyurethane spheres .

Low Solids Mud System ‡ Solids content is less than 10% by weight or the mud weight is less than 9.5 ppg ‡ It may either have a water or oil base .

‡ Their high cost and difficulty of running. deep holes and where sticking and hole stabilization are problems.Oil-Based Muds (EDIT 2) ‡ Used for a variety of applications where fluid stability and inhibition are necessary. such as high-temperature wells. other than in certain troublesome evaporite and clay sections . and complication of geological evaluation preclude their use on exploratory wells.

4 Types of ³Oil-Based´ Muds ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Emulsion (oil/water) System Invert Emulsion (water/oil) System Oil mud True Oil-based mud .

Emulsion (Oil/Water) System ‡ Diesel or crude oil is dispersed in a continuous phase of water .

Invert Emulsion (Water/Oil) System (EDIT2) ‡ Invert emulsion muds are water-in-oil emulsions typically with calcium chloride brine as the emulsified phase and oil as the continuous phase. ‡ May contain up to 50% by volume of water in the liquid phase ‡ Now synonymous with oil based mud .

. ³usually a mixture of diesel fuel and asphalt. not emulsions at the start of their use in drilling.Oil Muds ‡ The IADC identifies oil muds as.

´ .Oil Base Muds ‡ Oil-base mud contains blown asphalt and usually 1 to 5% water emulsified into the system with caustic soda or quick lime and an organic acid. wall-building properties and fluid loss. method of controlling viscosity and thixotropic properties. Oil-base muds are differentiated from invert emulsion muds (both water-in-oil emulsions) by the amounts of water used.

‡ Primary types of synthetic fluids are esters.Synthetic Muds (SBM) (NEW2) ‡ Synthetic fluids are designed to mirror oilbased mud performance. ethers. can be discharged offshore and are non-sheening and biodegradable. They are environmentally friendly. without the environmental hazards. poly alpha olefins and isomerized alpha olefins. .

Foam and Gas Systems (EDIT 2) ‡ Used principally in hard clay or rock formations or in areas where there is little formation water ‡ At times a foaming agent is used to improve carrying capacity .Air. Mist.

Air Drilling ‡ A compressor assembly including cooling system. air receiver and unloading system replaces the mud pump ‡ The air line is connected to the swivel hose at the top of the kelly or top drive. ‡ A small stream of water is often introduced into the air system to help cool the drill bit and control dust .

End of Topic .

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