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2011 International Conference on Instrumentation, Measurement, Computer, Communication and Control

Study on Downhole Multi-sensor Monitoring and Data Transmission of Electric Submersible Pump

Yuanyuan Lv
School of Electrical Engineering Harbin Institute of Technology Harbin, China E-mail:

Qiang Gao
School of Electrical Engineering Harbin Institute of Technology Harbin, China E-mail:

Dianguo Xu
School of Electrical Engineering Harbin Institute of Technology Harbin, China E-mail:
Abstract-To monitor the Electric Submersible Pump (ESP) running state, a multi-sensor downhole test system was designed in this paper. It is the important corollary equipment of the ESP. It can offer a number of detailed parameters of downhole environment. Therefore, this can raise the working reliability and utilizing efficiency of ESP. First, considering the condition of high temperature, high pressure and long distance data transmission in the oil well, an ingenious data transmission method which is based on the analog current loop was presented in this paper. Then downhole current loop data transmission system and uphole data processing system were illustrated in detail. Finally, the results of the experiment indicated the feasibility and the high reliability of the data transmission system. Keywords-current loop; ESP; data transmission; ARM

power line carrier communication, the other is wireless communication. About the first method, designing transmitter and receiver is essential, which is relatively complex, and moreover, when the submersible motor runs in the frequency conversion mode, it may produce the problem of unreliable communication in practical applications. As for the second method, Wireless data transmission will cause too much interference because downhole working environment is very bad under high temperature and high pressure condition. In view of the defects of above two methods, an ingenious data transmission method which is based on the analog current loop was presented in this paper.



Currently, the electric submersible pump (ESP) for oil extraction has been widely used; therefore, monitoring the production status of ESP wells is very important. To keep abreast of the production dynamic, grasp the changes of oil well output and achieve the best exploitation results, researching ESP downhole parameters detection and transmission is necessary. Figure 1 shows the ESP structure. It consists of three parts. Downhole part includes a submersible pump, a submersible motor, a submersible cable, etc. Uphole equipments comprise a control cabinet, transformers, etc. Others are auxiliary equipments. If downhole pressure, temperature, pump vibration and other working condition measured with sensors can be transmitted through the cable to the ground control cabinet, it allows users to monitor more effectively. However, the depth of the oil well is several kilometers that involve the problem of long-distance data transmission. There are two general research schemes about ESP downhole data transmission at present. One is low-voltage
978-0-7695-4519-6/11 $26.00 2011 IEEE DOI 10.1109/IMCCC.2011.27 70

Fig.1 the ESP system schematic diagram



After signals are conditioned, using long line transmission in the form of voltage signal will be disturbed by noise, and the distributed resistance of transmission line can cause voltage drop. To avoid this problem, voltage signals are converted to current signals in long-distance data transmission. An analog 4 to 20 mA current loop is used commonly in industry. 4mA stands for a zero signal, and 20mA represents the full scale signal. Lower than 4mA and higher than 20mA signal can be used for a variety of fault alarm. The diagram shown in Figure 2 is an analog 4 to 20 mA current loop.
Loop Supply
Sensor Output Signal Remote sensor electronics

Uphole system, including power supply unit and data processing unit connects to the neutral point of a three-phase symmetrical star connection reactance directly. Each phase of the reactance is also a large inductor to prevent communication interference. The uphole system shell should be grounded, too. The ESP downhole inductor, downhole system, motor three-phase winding, motor three-phase cable, ground threephase reactor and uphole system form a loop through the shell. Data are transmitted through the current loop, namely, voltage signals can be modulated towards DC current of motor neutral point in the downhole system, and corresponding signals will be gained by detecting the current of ground reactor neutral point in uphole system. B. Circuit Degisn The specific circuit of above-mentioned data transmission method is shown in figure 4(Omitting motor three-phase winding and ground three-phase reactor). On the left of the dotted line is uphole unit; on the right is downhole unit. Uphole unit includes a 120V DC voltage and a 100 : sampling resistor which is used to detect current of the reactor neutral point (the current in the loop). Downhole unit shows a voltage-current converter circuit which turns the voltage signal into current signal in the current loop. The input voltage means the signal that passes through the conditioning circuit after the output of the sensor. In figure 4, D1 and D2 are 15V voltage-regulator tubes that output 30V voltage being supplied to the conditioning circuit. D4 and D5 are constant-current source diodes. If the terminal voltage is higher than 3V, the total output will be 8 mA. C1, C2, AMP1, M1, R2, R3 and R5 form a negative feedback circuit; meanwhile, R2, R3, C1, C2 and AMP1 constitute a integrating circuit being used to integrate the discrepant value after comparing the voltage of K-point with input voltage. Then, the circuit output return to M1 that control the Gate-Source voltage and adjust the Drain-Source current, at the same time, K-point voltage will be adjusted indirectly, so the final result is that the output of the integrator is zero. In this case, K-point potential is as the same as the input voltage value. Because there is no current flowing through R2 in the steady state, the current flowing through R1 is the sum of 8mA and IDS which is the loop current. Because R1 is also 100 : , K-point and M-point voltage are the same value, but in the opposite direction. Working principle: In the case of no input voltage (Input Disconnection), MOSFET is not open, IDS=0, and the loop current keeps the value at 8mA. Setting the 8mA current is to determine whether the loop is working. When the input voltage is zero, a 1V DC offset is superimposed on the measured signal in order to differentiate these two cases between the input is zero and the input is disconnected. In other words, when the measured signal is zero, the input voltage is 1V in figure 4. At this time, MOSFET starts to work, IDS=2mA, the corresponding loop current is 10mA.

RL Sensor

Fig.2 The principle of analog current loop

Only two wires are required to send the analog signal and also supply power to the sensor. A loop supply voltage is used to power the remote sensor. The remote sensor regulates the loop current such that the loop current represents the value of the parameter being measured by the sensor. A resistor R L at loop power supply converts this current to a voltage that can be used by the electronics to record or distribute the parameter being measured. III. ESP DOWNHOLE DATA TRANSMISSION SYSTEM

A. The Principle of Data Transmission Figure 3 shows the ESP data transmission system. In the figure, below the dotted line is the submersible pump unit (omitting irrelevant parts). Three-phase power supplies to the submersible motor (indicated with three phase symmetrical windings) through the cable. Downhole system, including sensors and sensor circuits couples to the motor neutral point by a large inductor. The inductor (120H) is mainly used to prevent that motor alternating current may cause communication interference between downhole and uphole unit. At the same time, the downhole system shell should be grounded.
Three-phase Power Supply




Uphole System

Ground Three-phase Reactor


Motor Three-phase Winding

Downhole System

Fig.3 the ESP data transmission system


Fig.4 The circuit of the current loop data transmission

When the input voltage is not zero, if the K-point potential keeps pace with the input voltage, integrator circuit will not work. And the system will be in steady state. If K-point potential is inconsistent with the input voltage, for example, the input voltage is higher than the K-point potential, RC integrating circuit will integrate the discrepant current, which can increase the output of AMP1, then increase UGS and IDS by returning to the gate of M1 through the resistor R5, eventually make K-point voltage and input voltage the same value. If the input voltage is lower than the K-point potential, IDS will be reduced according to the same principles; finally the K-point voltage and input voltage will maintain congruence. Through such a feedback effect, it is achievable that converting the input voltage to current. IV. ESP UPHOLE DATA PROCESSING SYSTEM Figure 5 shows the logic diagram of the uphole data processing system. First, current signal is converted to voltage signal by current detection after being transmitted to uphole system. Second, voltage signal converts to the digital signal by A/D converter. Finally, the microprocessor is responsible for data processing, storage and display. Because of the multiple peripheral interfaces and complicated functions, ARM7 and ARM9 are used as the processors together, they communicate with each other by UART.
Multiple Rectifier Circuit 120VDownhole Power Supply Motor Neutral Point
ARM7 Current Detection A/D Convert RS232 SD card Relay ARM9 RS232 Key Lcd AC/DC 5V AC/DC 24V

ARM7TDMI-S CPU, and it has adequate Peripherals, running at up to 72 MHz. Because the voltage signal should be converted to digital signal, A/D converter is necessary. LPC2378 has a 10 bit A/D converter with input multiplexing among 8 pins, but the accuracy can not meet the design requirements. We chose a 16-bit A/D converter ADS8320. The ADS8320 features operation from 2.0V to 5.25V, a synchronous serial (SPI/SSI compatible) interface and a differential input. It requires very little power even when operating at the full 100 kHz data rate. Software system is responsible to achieve the sampling, testing and monitoring function based on hardware platform, and finish the following tasks: Building a simple and practical man-machine interface; providing appropriate and comprehensive sampling algorithm; reaching accurate and simple data processing; completing clear and comprehensive data storage. The ARM7 System flow chart is shown in figure 6.
Start ARM Start up
Main() Entry

Main() Initialize

GPIO Config A/D Init() RTC Init() SD Init() UART Init() Voltage Test Uart Test Fault Alarm() Trip()


220V AC

Self Test



Fig.5 The logic diagram of the uphole data processing system


The ARM7 system is the main part. We chose LPC2378 microcontroller of NXP Semiconductors. It is based on an

Fig.6 ARM7 System flow chart


The system starts self-test after normal initialization, including downhole supply voltage detection and serial communication. Then, it includes two conditions: normal operation state and fault alarm state. Normal operation is a circle: To begin with, A/D converter starts to work, collecting all parameters of downhole system; secondly, LPC2378 accomplishes data processing, and each parameter store the final average value into the SD card after filtering. Finally, the 16-bit digits of each parameter are sent to ARM9. During this period, keeping detection whether fault occurs, if so, enter the fault alarm state. AT91SAM9261 is the core in ARM9 System. First, it initializes its on-chip Peripherals, UCGUI graphics library and the keyboard. Then, the program enters the main menu which is an infinite loop process. In this cycle, the program queries the state of buttons. If a button is pressed, select the corresponding icon among the main menu. V. EXPERIMENTAL REASULTS After the hardware and software system were designed in detail, further experiments were done to test the system performance. In the author's research on ESP multi-sensor monitoring system, we adopted the method of data transmission mentioned in this article. Six parameters such as pump intake pressure, discharge pressure, intake temperature, motor temperature, pump vibration and leakage current were measured by the downhole system. The power cable was used to carry communication signals from the downhole system to the uphole data processing system, so we need no other cables. The ARM7 system was responsible for data processing, storage and transmission, while in the ARM9 system, it accomplished parameter display and system settings. Figure 7 shows the real objects of the system. On the left is the ARM7 data processing circuit, on the right is the testing and transmission circuit. The experimental results shown in figure 8 were measured by the sampling resistance of the uphole system. The oscilloscope displayed voltage signals of six parameters by time-sharing method. By comparing the actual measured value and the calibration value, it could be clearly seen that the measurement accuracy of pressure was 0.2%, temperature was 0.75% and motor vibration was 1.88%. In the case of motor was working or not working, the data transmission would be effective and reliable. Figure 9 shows the system display interface.

Voltage Signals Pressure



Pump Vibration Temperature Leakage Current

Fig.8 The output waveform of downhole parameters

Fig.9 The display interface of the ARM9 system



The data transmission method which is based on the analog current loop can eliminate the effect of signal attenuation and noise effectively in the long-distance transmission, and it features simple hardware design, stable working performance and great data accuracy. The cores of the uphole data processing system are ARM7 and ARM9 system that have functions of Data processing, display and fault diagnosis. REFERENCES
[1] [2] Lin Haidu, The ESP Downhole Monitoring System. Mill Valley, University HIT, 2008. P.Nellen, A. Frank and P. Nauron, Reliability of Fiber Bragg based Sensors for Downhole Application, Sensor and Actuators Physical, vol. 29, 2005, pp. 281-284 J.W. Fu, L.Z. Xiao, Y.Z. Zhang, X.L. Zhao and H.F. Chen, Progress of Network Permanent Reservoir Dynamics Real-time Monitoring Technology, Well Logging Technology, vol. 104, 2003, pp. 364376 Zhang Yuanzhong, Xiao Lizhi, Wang Jieyi, Oil Well Real-time Monitoring With Downhole Permanent FBG Sensor Network, Proc. IEEE Symp. Control and Automation, IEEE Press, 2007, pp. 29512954.



Fig.7 The system real objects