# Well Control

Lesson 7B Other Abnormal Pressure Detection Methods

TAMU - Pemex

Contents
 Moore’s Equation - Drilling rate  Gas in the Drilling Fluid  Rock Sample Characteristics  Use of Surge and Swab Pressure to determine Overbalance  Changes in Drilling Fluid Properties  Temperature Indications  Hole Conditions
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Moore’s Equation
Moore proposed a practical method for maintaining pore pressure overbalance while drilling into a transition. If drilling parameters are kept constant while drilling into an abnormal pressure zone, the drilling rate will increase.
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Moore’s Equation
Moore suggests that we increase the mud weight sufficiently to keep the drilling rate from increasing. The increase in mud weight will then be a measure of the abnormal pore pressure.  But how much do we increase the mud weight?
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Moore’s Equation

Transition zone Begin weighting up Weight up complete
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Ex. 2.10

?
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Example 2.10
Bit parameters prior to transition were Bit Weight = 4,700 lbf/in

Rotary Speed = 80 rpm Transition detected at 9,100 ft and the operator immediately reduced the bit weight to 2,900 lbf/in
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Example 2.10
Determine the extrapolated “normal” penetration rate at a depth of 9,250 ft if the bit weight is reduced from its current value of 4,700 to 2,900 lbf. Use the data in Fig. 2.46 and Moore’s penetration rate model.
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Fig. 2.46

Solution
 The extrapolated “normal” penetration rate at 9,250’ is 15.7 ft/hr, at 4,700 lbf bit weight.  This would have been the target rate had the bit weight remained constant.

9,250

15.7

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Solution – cont’d
 The target penetration rate at the reduced bit weight of 2,900 lbf is calculated below:
 W  aN R=K N d   b
 2,900   80  R = 15.7     4,700   80 

Moore' s Eq. 2.23

(assumes R α W)
aN

R = 9.7 ft/hr
 The target rate would revert back to 15.7 ft/hr if the operator resumes drilling at 4,700 lbf/in.
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Example 2.11 - Fig. 2.46
How much should we increase the mud weight? (Moore)

At 8,300 ft (under normal conditions); increase the ECD from 9.6 to 10.1 ppg. In response, the drilling rate decreases from 20.5 ft/hr to 18.5 ft/hr What is the shale compaction coefficient, c?
ρ log R 1 = ρ 2 log R 2
c 1 c

Eq. 2.24
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Solution

ρ1 log R 1 = ρ 2 log R 2

c

c

 ECD changes from ρ 1 = 9.6 to ρ 2 = 10.1 ppg  Calculate c, the shale compaction coefficient  (9.6)c log 20.5 = (10.1)c log 18.5  (10.1/9.6)c = log 20.5 / log 18.5 = 1.035  c * log 1.052 = log 1.035

c = 0.679
 ρ2  log R 1   = ρ  log R 2  1
c

Now use Eq. 2.24 to calculate the required change in mud weight
1 c

 log R 1  ρ 2 = ρ1  log R   2  

 log R 1  ρ 2 = ρ1   log R   2  

1.47

= 10.1

lb gal

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Example 2.12
 At 9,090 ft the “normal” penetration rate is 16.5 ft/hr  Actual penetration rate is 18.0 ft/hr, using a mud weight of 9.6 ppg  “Normal” MW = 8.3 ppg
 log R 1  ρ 2 = ρ1   log R   2  
1.47

Fig. 2.46

 log 18.0  ρ 2 = 9.6  log 16.5    

1.47

9,090
= 10.0 ppg

∆ ρ = (10.0 - 9.6) = 0.4 ppg ρ p = 8.3 + 0.4 = 8.7 ppg

16.5

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Other predictors of abnormal pressure
Drilling rate is not the only available predictor of abnormal pressure. Properties of shale cuttings can be used:

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Shale density
Offshore Nigeria Transition ∆ _shale density from Boatman

Density - g/cm3

ρ

n – ρ

- g/cm3 o

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Example 2.15
pp_14,000 =?

ρ

o

= 2.44

ρ n= 2.54

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Solution
 At 14,000’, ρ n = 2.54 and ρ o = 2.44 g/cm3 so, ∆ ρ = 0.1 g/cm3

From Fig. 2.48: p14,000 = 0.052*14.6*14,000 p14,000 = 10,629 psig
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∆ shale density from Boatman

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Shale density measurement
1. Fill a standard API mud balance with shale cuttings (wash and dry with a towel) until balance reads 8.33 ppg. 2. Fill the cup to top with water and record reading (e.g. 13.3 ppg).
8.33

Calculate S.G. of shale cuttings: S.G. = 8.33/(16.66 - 13.3) S.G. = 2.48
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Possible Sources of Gas in a Drilling Fluid

• Drilled gas, • Produced gas • Recycled gas • Contamination gas

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Possible Sources of Gas in a Drilling Fluid
• Drilled gas, cuttings gas, or liberated gas refers to gas released from rock cuttings generated by the bit. Usually small volumes. Increasing MW will not help. • Produced gas refers to gas which enters the wellbore from the walls of the hole. Increasing MW will reduce the quantity. • Recycled gas is any wellbore gas that remains in the mud after at least one pass through the surface equipment. • Contamination gas is gas released from any volatile hydrocarbons intentionally added to the system (mud additives). 23

Gas in Mud
Connection gas - gas that has entered the wellbore when pumps are shut down to make a connection, can be detected in a gas trap. Trip gas - gas that entered the wellbore during a trip; can also be detected. Background gas - gas baseline concentration in the mud – usually small.
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Example 2.17
Determine the density of the gas-cut mud returns from a well at a depth of 2 ft below flowline outlet if:
 Clean MW  Flowline MW  Atmospheric press  Sample temperature  Gas gravity = 12.0 ppg = 7.0 ppg = 14.7 psia = 100 deg F = 0.6
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Solution – At the Surface
 From Eq. 1.22, ρ
g

g

* p/(2.77 * Z * T) = 0.6*14.7/(2.77*1*560)

ρ ρ

g,surface

g,surface

= 0.00569 ppg
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Solution – At the Surface
From Eq. 2.26, ρ
gm

m

m

(1 - fg) + ρ g fg
m

 fg = (ρ

- ρ gm)/ (ρ

- ρ g)

= (12.0 – 7.0/(12.0 - 0.00569) = 0.417 This is the gas fraction at the surface, but fg varies with depth.

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Solution – cont’d
 By definition, fg = Vg /(1+Vg) but, pV = ZnRT so, Vg = fg / (1- fg),

 n = fg *p / [ ZRT(1- fg )] n = 0.000234 lb-moles/gal of mud This parameter stays constant with depth provided the downhole gas entry rate remains constant.

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Solution – 2 ft down
Assuming the density of the mud-gas mixture does not change appreciably over two ft of depth.  p2ft = 14.7 + 0.052 * 7.0 * 2 = 15.43 psia  ρ
g,2ft

= 0.6 * 15.43 / (2.77 * 1 * 560) = .00597 lbm/gal
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Example 2.17 – cont’d
 fg,2ft = [(1 * 0.000234 * 80.275 * 560) / 15.43] [1+(1 * 0.000234 * 80.275 * 560) / 15.43] fg,2ft = 0.405 (down from 0.417 at the surface)  ρ ρ
2ft 2ft

= 12 * (1 - 0.405) + 0.00597 * 0.405

= 7.14 ppg

 This is an increase of 0.14 ppg in just 2’.  See Fig. 2.51 for plot of entire range
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Clearly most of the gas expansion is near the top of the wellbore. At 10,000’, MW = 11.9+ ppg. What is the resulting reduction in BHP due to the gas?

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Example 2.18
What is the total change in HSP at the bottom of the well described in Ex. 2.17? Average temperature is 150 deg F. From Eq. 2.28
∆preduc  p gm + p s = ln  (1 − fg ) Z sTs  ps  fgp s Z T
__ __

   
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Example 2.18 – cont’d
 In the annulus, without, gas  BHP = 12 * 10,000 / 19.25 = 6,233.8 psig  BHP = 6,248 psia  Average pressure = (14.7 + 6,248) / 2 = 3,131 psia  From Fig. 1.6, Zavg = 0.868
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Example 2.18 – cont’d

∆preduc

 p gm + p s = ln  (1 − fg ) Z sTs  ps  fgp s Z T

__ __

   

If pgm = 6,248 psia, then
∆p reduc 0.417 * 14.7 * 0.868 * 610  6,248 + 14.7  = ln   ( 1 − 0.417 ) * 1 * 560 s 14.7  

∆ pred = 60 psi  pgm = 6,248 - 60 = 6,188 psia  EMW = (6,188 – 14.7) / (0.052 * 10,000) = 11.87 ppg

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Gas cut mud
A second iteration is generally not necessary if the assumed value for pgm is reasonably close to the calculated value. Furthermore, adding gas to a drilling fluid will increase viscosity, so the annular friction drop will increase, partially off-setting any reduction in BHP due to gas.
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Gas cut mud
Another factor that will tend to offset the reduction in mud density is drilled cuttings. At a moderate to high drilling rate, the quantity of cuttings present in the mud at any time, may be significant.

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Gas in mud
Gas in mud is monitored as the mud exits the flowline. A gas trap is placed to sample the gas before the mud passes over the shale shaker. The gas concentration is recorded in arbitrary “gas units”. Look for relative changes.
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Gas detection unit
Gas detector located in the shale shaker’s possum belly. BBG = Background gas This is the baseline gas concentration in the mud, and is usually in the order of a few gas units. CG = Connection Gas
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39

CG = constant BGG = constant Overbalanced

CG increases BGG increases Underbalanced

CG increases BGG constant ?

CG increases BGG increases Transition zone 40

Measuring Surge Pressure
Flowline Mud Level Closed Safety Valve Pressure Recorder Sub

Swab pressure is hard to measure, but surge is not. Run one stand of pipe in hole at constant velocity. Repeat at different velocities. Plot surge pressure vs. pipe velocity.
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Drillpipe

Measuring Surge Pressure
Surge/Swab Pressure, psi

By assuming surge = swab, we can predict the swab pressure at different pipe pulling speeds.

Pipe Velocity, ft/sec

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Example
67 sec/std 452 min-units

59 sec/std

1,036 min-units

48 sec/std

2,132 min-units

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Example
 Estimate the pore pressure at TD if MW = 11.7 ppg The length of each stand is 90 ft.  V1 = 90 ft / 48 sec  V2 = 90 / 59  V3 = 90 / 67 = 1.88 ft/sec = 1.53 ft/sec = 1.34 ft/sec
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Example
Surge/Swab Pressure, psi

From Figure: ∆ p1 = 405 psi ∆ p2 = 300 psi ∆ p3 = 242 psi

Pipe Velocity, ft/sec

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Example
From Figure, plot of gas units vs. swab pressure, when line is extrapolated to zero velocity (zero gas), overbalance is found to be 197 psi

Gas Units
0

197 Pressure, psi

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Example
 With an overbalance of 197 psi:  Pore pressure = MW - (overbalance) 0.052 * TD Pore pressure = 11.7 - (197 / 0.052 * 13,600)

pp = 11.4 ppg.
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Changes in drilling fluid properties
 Gas in mud
 reduced density  increased viscosity

 Salt water inflow
 chloride content
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Changes in drilling fluid properties
 Salt water inflow
 Chloride content  Flocculation of sodium bentonite clay
 increases yield point  increases gel strength  increases water loss  poor filter cake  pH change
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Changes in drilling fluid properties
 Drilled rock salt can have similar effect  CO2 and H2S may reduce pH  H2S is very poisonous and is corrosive
 Raise pH and precipitate out any soluble sulfides using scavengers.
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Temperature and abnormal press.
Geothermal temperature vs. depth Poor conductivity requires higher temperature gradient to maintain constant heat flux.

Undercompacted rock Lower thermal conductivity Rock conducts heat better than pore fluid
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Temperature indicators
Temperature gradient tends to increase within a pore pressure transition Rock grains have a much higher thermal conductivity than pore fluids Well planning predictions may be assisted by downhole temperature measurements in offset wells
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Temperature indicators
 Note that wellbore circulation of fluids will distort the true temperature profile.  The drilling fluid temperature increases as the fluid moves down the drillpipe.  As fluid enters the annulus it’s temperature increases for a short while.  Higher up the annulus temperature decreases

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Flowline temperature from a North Sea well
Predictable increase in temperature of mud returns as depth increases

A deviation from the normal temperature trend may signal abnormal pore pressure

Important tool if no shales are present

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Hole Conditions
Drilling torque when rotating pipe, and drag during trips or connections, result from friction between the drillstring or bit and the walls of the hole. Torque and drag (T&D) will generally increase with depth, gradually.

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Hole Conditions
A sudden increase in T&D may be caused by hole instability. Circulate bottoms up and observe samples. If abnormal pressure caused an increase in T&D, the rock samples will help to tell the story.
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Sample Shale Cuttings

Normally pressured shales

Abnormally pressured shales
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