You are on page 1of 5



Under guidance of,

Prepared by:
Nikhil G Barshettiwar

To analyze casing failure in non-uniform subsalt loading

To study of stress orientation with respect time in subsalt
To study wellbore stability issues
Modelling of salt creeping
To investigate casing failure in non-uniform subsalt loading using case history
Fundamentals of rock mechanics
Fundamentals of well engineering

Following software will be use as part of study

ABAQUS for geomechanical modelling
LANDMARK for casing design
CMG for reservoir modelling (Model will be directly imported for analysis)

Experiments can be performed to check salt behaviour w.r.t temperature and pressure. This
experiment can be performed using HPHT reactor.
E&P companies started their major exploration and field developments in Gulf of Mexico,
Campos Basin in Brazil, Angola West Africa. The speciality of these fields is they are taking
place near the sub-salt fields. Drilling through these thick salts provide more effective way to
reach the target reservoir than drilling through surrounding overpressured zone. But
unfortunately drilling in such fields causes more well instability problems [Zee et al, 2011].
Once drilling is finish, completed well when starts producing, it causes another set of
problems. Among them collapsing of casing is the most important one.
Casing collapses can significantly affect the economic developments of the fields. Casing
failure usually associated with intruding 1. salt bodies 2. depletion, compaction and
subsidence of high porosity reservoirs 3. reactivation of faults or discontinuities 4. complex
tectonic active regions [X Shen, 2011].
This study mainly focuses on aspects of casing failure in non-uniform sub-salt loading. Its
very necessary to understand the properties of subsalt which is the causes the failure in
tubular. As per discussion in oilfield review spring 1996 issue, its low permeable nature
makes it best traps for hydrocarbons. The subsurface salt exist pseudoplastic flow nature
under subsurface pressure and temperature. Since salt acts like fluid, applies equal stresses in
all the directions approximately equal to overburden. In case if borehole pressure is less than

in-situ salt strength, it creeps out and reduces openhole diameter. These underguage boreholes
ultimately results in failure of casing.

Figure-1 (Reference- Oilfield review, spring 1996)

Above diagram explains the failure of casing over the time after installation. Once production
starts, differential pressure causes salt creeping which applies non-uniform load and become a
cause of failure.
Salt creping needs critical investigation. This involves rate of creeping, in-situ stress and nonuniform loading due to its intrusion. To find above parameters, engineer must know
phenomenon of creeping. As per discussion on university of Cambridge online portal,
creeping is described as when material is subjected to stress greater than or equal to its yield
stress, the material deforms plastically. However, provided if temperature is high, material
deforms before its yield stress and is known as creep. This deformation is time dependant.

Figure-2 (Reference-

Same literature has classified creeping mechanism into two broad categories i.e. diffusion
creeping and dislocation creeping. Diffusion creep is explained as transport of material via
diffusion of atoms within a grain. Where dislocation creep is mechanism involves motion of
Method of analysis covers numerical analysis and geomechanical analysis. Geomechnical
analysis involves the standard procedure of geomechanical modelling adopted by Baker
Hughes Reservoir Development Services. Process flow is given below in the diagram. Final
geomechanical around salt structures will help significantly to improve wellbore stability

Initially data will be collected and analyze. Then reservoir static model need to be build using
any reservoir simulator. Model will be imported to geomechanical simulator, where it will be
populated with the mechanical properties of rock. Reservoir scale model and wellbore scale
model will be contacted in ABAQUS. Stress-strain analysis will be conducted. Same analysis
can be use to investigate casing failures. New casing recommendations can be obtained using
LANDMARK for the variable stress in salt dome.