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COVENANT UNIVERSITY

CANAANLAND, OTA.

PETROLEUM ENGINEERING LABORATORY

DETERMINING THE DENSITY OF A MUD USING


A MUD BALANCE

BY
OGUZO JOSHUA CHIBUOKEM
16CN021112

Date performed: 25-01-2019


Date submitted: 29-01-2019

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTERS
1.ABSTRACT
2.INTRODUCTION
3.EQUIPMENT/APPARATUS
4.EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES
5.RESULTS AND CALCULATIONS
6.DISCUSSIONS
7.CONCLUSIONS

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ABSTRACT

In drilling operations one of the most important aspects to understand


while drilling or before drilling operations are the different drilling
muds/fluids and its properties, and how it reacts with the different
formations while drilling.
Drilling mud is a mixture of fluids and solids which are used
downhole in the drilling process. Drilling mud is a circulating fluid used
to bring cuttings out of the well bore, to cool the drill bit, and to provide
hole stability and pressure control.
So you can see the use of drilling mud cannot be quantified and is
indispensable for a successful drilling operation, the adequate mud
weight/density is also as important and if the wrong mud weight or
density is used it may cause more harm than good, and the effects of
using the wrong/improper mud weight/density include: Loss circulation,
fluid loss, influx of formation fluid and in some cases a blow-out may
occur. In order to prevent these from happening the right mud
density/weight is required.
Many experiments and calculations have been undergone to ensure
the successful drilling and maintenance of the well.
In this experiment, we are determining the mud density using a
mud balance which is required to calculate the hydrostatic pressure
being exerted by a column of drilling mud. The mud density also helps
to provide an indication of the solid content of a drilling mud.

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INTRODUCTION
One of the most important properties in drilling fluid engineering is
determining the density of the drilling mud because it controls formation
pressure and it also helps wellbore stability.
The density of a mud is a weight of mud per unit volume and it's
measured in pounds per feet (lbs./ft^3), pounds per gallons(ppg) or
grams per millilitre(b/ml).
The density of a given volume of mud is gotten using a mud balance.
The most accurate way of measuring the density of a mud is using the
pressurised mud balance, because it avoids any interference (air) while
taking your readings on the mud balance.
The scale ranges of the 4-scale metal balance are;
 6.5-23.0 lbs./gal (ppg)
 0.79-272 specific gravity (s.g)
 49-179 lbs./ft^3
 340-1190 psi/1000ft

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EQUIPMENT /APPARATUS
1. MUD BALANCE: - A device used to measure the density
(weight) of mud, cement or other liquid or slurry. A mud balance
consists of a fixed-volume mud cup with a lid on one end of a
graduated beam and a counterweight on the other end.

2. MIXER:- It's an electronic


device used in stirring(mixing)
substances in the laboratory.
It’s also helps to form a
homogenous mixture from
more than one ingredient.

3. MEASURING SCALE:- It's a device used in the laboratory for


measuring the weight of materials.

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4. MEASURING CYLINDER: A graduated cylinder (or
measuring cylinder) is a piece of laboratory glassware used to
measure the volume of liquids.

5. SPATULA: these are


stainless steel and plastics for
transferring your samples without contamination and sticking in the
laboratory.

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EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES

 Place the mud balance base (preferably in carrying case) on a


flat level surface.
 Fill the clean, dry cup to the top with the test fluid.
 Place the lid on the cup and set it with a gentle twisting motion.
Be sure that some mud is expelled through the hole in the cup as
this will ensure the cup is full and also free any trapped air or
gas.
 Cover the hole in the lid with a finger and wash all mud from
the outside of the cup and arm. Then thoroughly dry the entire
balance.
 Place the balance on the knife edge and move the rider along the
outside of the arm until the cup and arm are balanced as
indicated by the bubble.
 Read the mud weight at the edge of the rider towards the mud
cup.

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RESULTS AND CALCULATIONS

Sample A:- 20g of Bentonite and 350ml of water.


Sample B:- Sample A + 5g of Barite.
Sample C:- Sample A + 50ml of water.

Samples SP.GR PPG lbs/ft^3 Psi/1000ft


A 1. 04 8.6 65 450
B 1.055 8.8 66 455
C 1.04 8.6 65 450

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DISCUSSIONS

From the experiment we observed that there was a change in each


sample;

 Sample A is immiscible, and the filtrate settles.


 Sample B the filtrates do not settle due to the use of barite
which is used to add weight to the mud and there is no distinct
separation.
 Sample C has a lighter brown colour due to excess water used
for the experiment and the mud particles settles at the bottom,
while the water rises up to the surface.
 NOTE:- Sample A and sample C shows distinct relativity, cause
there was no change only the addition of more water to sample
C.
 Bentonite is a drilling fluid additive used to lubricate and cool
the cutting tools, to remove cuttings, and to help prevent
blowouts. It also helps prevent against corrosion.
 Barite is a weighting material in the formulation of drilling mud,
its used to add weight to the drilling mud. Also, Barite increases
the hydrostatic pressure of the drilling mud allowing it to
compensate for high-pressure zones experienced during drilling.

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CONCLUSIONS

The main aim of this experiment was to find the density/weight of the
different drilling mud properties. In order to accomplish these three (3)
samples were given in which sample A was water with Bentonite,
sample B was water and barite and sample C was sample A plus
additional water in it. Bentonite is helps prevent corrosion and helps
lubricates the cutting tools, while barite is a weighing agent that adds
with to the drilling mud and it’s mostly used in high pressurised zones.
Also, we have learnt about the importance of drilling mud. When the
drilling fluid is insufficient it leads to wellbore instability, but when the
drilling fluid is too high it leads to loss circulation, decrease in rate of
penetration, differential stuck pipe and formation damage.

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