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Detection and Prediction of the

Abnormal Pressure value Before,

While, During Drilling

By

Dr. Eissa Mohamed Shokir

Abnormal Pressure
- Definition, Causes -

• Normal Pore Pressures

• Abnormal Pore Pressure Gradients
• Mud Weights
• Casing Seat Depths
• What Causes Abnormal Pressure?
Normal and Abnormal Pore Pressure

West Texas: 0.433 psi/ft
Gulf Coast: 0.465 psi/ft
Depth, ft

Abnormal
Pressure

10,000’ ??
Pore Pressure, psig
Pore Pressure vs. Depth
0
0.433 psi/ft 8.33 lb/gal
0.465 psi/ft 9.0 lb/gal
5,000
Depth, ft

Normal
10,000

Abormal
15,000

20,000
8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
Pore Pressure Equivalent, lb/gal
{ Density of mud required to control this pore pressure }

Pore Pressure
* Pore
Pressure

* Fracture

* Casing
Setting
Depths
Some Causes of Abnormal Pressure

1. Incomplete compaction of sediments

– Fluids in sediments have not
escaped and are still helping to
support the overburden.

2. Tectonic movements
4 Uplift
4 Faulting
Some Causes of Abnormal Pressure

3. Aquifers in Mountainous Regions

– Aquifer recharge is at higher
elevation than drilling rig location.

4. Charged shallow reservoirs due to

nearby underground blowout.

5. Large structures...
• Abnormal Formations do not have the
freedom of pressure communications. If
they did, the high pressures would rapidly
dissipate revert to normal pressure.
• Assuming that a pressure seal is present, the
causes or origin of pressure depend on some
items as lithology, minerology, tectonic
action, and rate of sedimentation
1- Compaction of sediments.

Db

Normal Pressure

Abnormal Pressure

Ab normal pore pressure are generated under

compacted region because the shale matrix
can’t support the overburden stress
P = 0.465 psi/ft * Db + 1.0 psi/ft *(Dt-Db)
HIGH PRESSURE

NORMAL PRESSURE

Thick, impermeable layers of shale (or salt) restrict the movement

of water. Below such layers abnormal pressure may be found.
HIGH PRESSURE

NORMAL PRESSURE

Hydrostatic pressure gradient is lower in gas or oil than in water.

When crossing faults it is possible to go from normal
pressure to abnormally high pressure in a short interval.
Well “A” found only Normal Pressure ...
σob

p σz

σOB = p + σZ
?
Indications of Abnormal Pore Pressures

Methods:

1. Seismic data
2. Drilling rate
3. Sloughing shale
4. Gas units in mud
5. Shale density
6. Chloride content
Indications of Abnormal Pore Pressures

Methods, cont’d:

7. Change in Mud properties

8. Temperature of Mud Returns
9. Bentonite content in shale
10. Paleo information
11. Wire-line logs
12. MWD-LWD
Prediction and Detection of Abnormal
Pressure Zones

1. Before drilling

4 Comparison with nearby wells

Prediction and Detection of Abnormal
Pressure Zones

2. While drilling
4 Drilling rate, gas in mud, etc. etc.
4 D - Exponent
4 DC - Exponent
4 MWD - LWD
4 Density of shale (cuttings)
Prediction and Detection of Abnormal
Pressure Zones

3. After drilling
4 Resistivity log
4 Conductivity log
4 Sonic log
4 Density log
−0.000085 DS
φ = 0..41 e – .
What is d-
exponent?

Decreasing ROP
D - Exponent

The Where
drilling rate R = drilling rate, ft/hr
equation: K = drillability constant
N = rotary speed, RPM
D
⎛W⎞ E = rotary speed expon.
R = K N ⎜⎜
E
⎟⎟
W = bit weight, lbs
⎝ DB ⎠
DB = bit diameter, in
D = bit wt. Exponent
or D - exponent
D
⎛W⎞
D - Exponent R = K N ⎜⎜
E
⎟⎟
⎝ DB ⎠

If we assume that K = 1
and E = 1

Then ⎛R⎞
log ⎜ ⎟
⎝ N⎠
D
R ⎛W⎞ D=
= ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟ ⎛W⎞
N ⎝ DB ⎠ log ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
⎝ DB ⎠
D - Exponent

⎛ R ⎞
log ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
d= ⎝ 60 N ⎠
⎛ 12 W ⎞
log ⎜⎜ 6 ⎟⎟
⎝ 10 DB ⎠
Example

follows:

⎛ mud weight for normal gradient (ppg) ⎞

dc = d ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
⎝ actual mud weight in use(ppg) ⎠

⎛ 9 ⎞ ⎛ 9 ⎞
e.g., dc = d ⎜ ⎟ = 1.82 * ⎜ ⎟ = 1.37
⎝ 12 ⎠ ⎝ 12 ⎠
Procedure for Determining Pore Pressure
From dc - Exponent

• Calculate dc over 10-30 ft intervals

• Plot dc vs depth (use only date from
Clean shale sections)
• Determine the normal line for the dc
vs. depth plot.
• Establish where dc deviates from the
normal line to determine abnormal
pressure zone
Procedure for Determining Pore Pressure
From dc - Exponent

No
rm
al
Normal
Depth

Tre
d n Abnormal

dc - Exponent
Procedure for Determining Pore Pressure
From dc - Exponent

• If possible, quantify the magnitude of the

abnormal pore pressure using
overlays, or Ben Eaton’s Method
1 .2
P S ⎛S ⎛P ⎞ ⎞ ⎛ d c calculated ⎞
= − ⎜⎜ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎟⎟ ⎜ ⎟
D D ⎝ D ⎝ D ⎠n ⎠ ⎜ d normal ⎟
⎝ c ⎠

Pore
Pressure Overburden Normal Pore
In normally pressured
shales, shale
compaction increases
with depth
Pore Pressure from
Resistivity

Depth
Shale resistivity plots
may be developed from
(i) logs or
(ii) cuttings
What is the pore 10,000’
pressure at the point
indicated on the plot?
[Assume Gulf Coast].
Depth=10,000 ft
0.2 0.5 1 2 3
From plot, Rn = 1.55 ohms EATON
Robs = 0.80 ohms

From Eaton:

Depth
1 .2
P S ⎛S ⎛P ⎞ ⎞ ⎛ R obs ⎞
= − ⎜⎜ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎟⎟ ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
D D ⎝ D ⎝ D ⎠n ⎠ ⎝ Rn ⎠

1 .2
⎛ 0 . 80 ⎞
= 0 . 95 − (0 . 95 − 0 . 465 ) ⎜
P
⎟ 10,000’
D ⎝ 1 . 55 ⎠

P = 0.7307 * 10,000 = 7,307 psi

0.2 0.5 1 2 3
Prediction of
Abnormal Pore Pressure

• Resistivity of Shale
• Temperature in the Return Mud
• Drilling Rate Increase
• dc - Exponent
• Sonic Travel Time
• Conductivity of Shale
EXAMPLE

Shale Resistivity
vs. Depth

1. Establish normal
trend line

2. Look for
deviations

(semi-log)
Pore Pressure
Shale Resistivity (lb/gal equivalent)
vs. Depth 16 14 12 10

1. Establish normal
trend line
9 ppg
2. Look for
(normal)
deviations

3. Use OVERLAY
to quantify
pore pressure
(use with caution)
Example

8.2 X

Why?
Determination of Abnormal Pore
Pressure Using the dc - exponent

From Ben Eaton:

1 .2
P S ⎡ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎤⎛ d c ⎞
= − ⎢ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎥ ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
D D ⎣ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎦ ⎝ d cn ⎠
1 .2
P S ⎡ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎤⎛ d c ⎞
= − ⎢ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎥ ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
D D ⎣ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎦ ⎝ d cn ⎠
P
Where = formation pressure gradient, psi/ft
D
⎛P⎞
⎜ ⎟ = normal water gradient in area
⎝ D ⎠n
e.g., 0.433 or 0.465, psi/ft

S
= overburden stress gradient, psi/ft
D
dc = actual d c − expon ent from plot

d cn = d c − exp onent from the normal trend

Example
Calculate the pore pressure
at depth X using the data in
this graph.

Assume:
West Texas location with
normal overburden of
X
1.0 psi/ft.
X = 12,000 ft. 1.2 1.5
dc
Example

From Ben Eaton:

1 .2
P S ⎡ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎤⎛ d c ⎞
= − ⎢ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎥ ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
D D ⎣ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎦ ⎝ d cn ⎠
1 .2
⎛ 1 .2 ⎞
= 1 . 0 − [1 . 0 − 0 . 433 ]⎜ ⎟
⎝ 1 .5 ⎠
P
= 0 . 5662 psi/ft
D
Example

∴ P = 0.5662 x 12,000 = 6794 psi

6794
EMW = = 10.9 lbm/gal
0.052 x 12,000
E.S. Pennebaker

8 Used seismic field data for the

detection of abnormal pressures.

8 Under normally pressured conditions the sonic

velocity increases with depth. (i.e. Travel
time decreases with depth)

(why?)
E.S. Pennebaker

4 Any departure from this trend is an

indication of possible abnormal
pressures.

4 Pennebaker used overlays to estimate

abnormal pore pressures from the
difference between normal and actual
travel times.
Depth, ft

Interval Travel Time, µsec per ft

Ben Eaton
also found a way to determine pore pressure from
interval travel times.

Example:
In a Gulf Coast well, the speed of sound is 10,000
ft/sec at a depth of 13,500 ft. The normal speed of
sound at this depth, based on extrapolated trends,
would be 12,000 ft/sec. What is the pore pressure at
this depth?

Ben Eaton

From Ben Eaton,

P S ⎡ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎤ ⎛ ∆t n ⎞
3 .0

= − ⎢ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎥⎜ ⎟
D D ⎣ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎦ ⎝ ∆t ⎠
3
⎛ 10,000 ⎞
= 1.0 - [1.0 - 0.465] ⎜ ⎟
⎝ 12,000 ⎠
= 0.6904 psi/ft
( ∆t α 1/v )
Ben Eaton

Note: Exponent is 3.0 this time,

NOT 1.2!
Equations for Pore Pressure Determination
⎛ R ⎞
log ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
⎝ 60 N ⎠ ⎛ ρ NORMAL ⎞
d = * ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
⎛ ⎞ ⎝ ρ ACTUAL
C

log ⎜⎜
12 W
⎟⎟ ⎠
⎝ 10 6 D B ⎠
1 .2
P S ⎛ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎞ ⎛ d c calculated ⎞
= − ⎜⎜ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎟⎟ ⎜ ⎟
⎝ D ⎠n ⎜ ⎟
D D ⎝ D ⎠ ⎝ d c normal ⎠
1 .2
P S ⎛ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎞ ⎛ R obs ⎞
= − ⎜⎜ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎟⎟ ⎜⎜ ⎟⎟
D D ⎝ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎠ ⎝ R n ⎠
1 .2
P S ⎛ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎞ ⎛ C ⎞
= − ⎜⎜ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎟⎟ ⎜⎜ n
⎟⎟
D D ⎝ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎠ ⎝ C o ⎠
3 .0
P S ⎛ S ⎛ P ⎞ ⎞ ⎛ ∆ t ⎞
= − ⎜⎜ − ⎜ ⎟ ⎟⎟ ⎜⎜ n
⎟⎟
D D ⎝ D ⎝ D ⎠ n ⎠ ⎝ ∆ t o ⎠
Pore Pressure Determination