Tech Trends
New drilling and completions technologies
As companies look toward market recovery, these new drilling and completions technologies will help producers boost efficiencies and streamline operations.
Drill bit with concave-shaped cutting elements reduces drilling costs

Smith Bits, a Schlumberger company, has released the StrataBlade concave diamond element bit, which is designed to improve the ROP in a wide range of rock types while withstanding impact damage often associated with drilling interbedded formations. The StrataBlade bit incorporates new geometry Strata concave diamond elements across the bit face, which increases cutting efficiency and results in higher instantaneous ROP with the same operating parameters. In deep lateral wells where weight transfer to the bit is a challenge, the StrataBlade bit drills with higher ROP when compared with traditional PDC bits with flat cutters. Improved cutting efficiency also means a better torque response at the bit for conformance to directional plans. The bit has undergone field testing in North America, specifically in the Haynesville and the Appalachian Basin. In the East Texas Travis Peak and Cotton Valley formations, the StrataBlade bit enabled an operator to eliminate two bit runs while drilling to 10,000-ft measured depth with an average ROP increase of 28% compared to direct offset wells.

Drill bit with concave-shaped cutting elements reduces drilling costs
The StrataBlade concave diamond element bit features Strata elements strategically placed along the bit face. (Source: Schlumberger)
New electroplating coating to protect drilling equipment from wear and corrosion

Honeywell has entered into an agreement to allow industrial coatings provider Moore’s Industrial Service Ltd. to distribute and apply its new electroplating coating for use in demanding conditions within the oil and gas industry. The new coating is applied using a electroplating chemistry that protects the surface of components within a drilling string from abrasion and corrosion. Honeywell’s new offering provides several advantages compared with incumbent coating solutions, including up to three times more wear resistance than Chrome. The new coating is harder than before, while also being more durable and less expensive than other offerings. This enables customers to extend their drilling hours and lower total operating costs. Within the oil and gas industry, this coating will be used on tools for drilling, such as mud motors, piston housings, mandrels and cavity pumps. It will allow them to run longer without unnecessary or unplanned failures that lead to operational stoppages.

Company to develop AI tool to support offshore drilling efforts

Norwegian oil services company Applied Petroleum Technology (APT) has received research funding to develop an artificial intelligence (AI) tool that can dramatically change how oil companies utilize biostratigraphic services to plan drilling programs and evaluate and assess hydrocarbon wells. Biostratigraphy is the dating of rocks with the help of fossils that is obligatory for all exploration wells drilled on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. It is used to help understand the subsurface geology and correlate sections in wells both within fields and on a larger regional scale. The Norwegian Research Council has awarded APT a grant to develop an image digitalization and AI technique and associated software to modernize and improve microscopic analysis to find, identify and quantify the fossil content. The latter is utilized in the planning of drilling programs, evaluation and assessment of wells during the offshore drilling process.

New hydraulic dual choke unit offers increased value to drilling applications

CORTEC has released its new CX-HB3.0 Hydra-Balance Choke and Panel System, which offers drilling operations an increased level of value and functionality within MPD, underbalanced drilling and other drilling set-point applications. This new system has been designed to provide higher levels of accuracy, ease of use and field-friendly serviceability for end users seeking a simple set-point solution. The Hydra-Balance system is designed to exceed the level of response and precision of many existing options within the market. CORTEC has concluded an extensive round of both in-house validation and infield operational trials. The CX-HB3.0 system features a main HPU/HMI control panel with remote HMI panel integration and offers a set-point accuracy of +/- 25 or less psi, operating pressure range up to 2,500 psi and maintains a compact footprint that maximizes weight and space savings.

New hydraulic dual choke unit offers increased value to drilling applications
CORTEC’s CX-HB3.0 Hydra-Balance Choke and Panel System is a hydraulic dual choke unit that can be controlled via a compact remote panel, which is installed in close proximity to the driller. (Source: CORTEC)
Biosurfactant technology boosts initial completion oil production

Locus Bio-Energy Solutions (Locus BE) has released SUSTAIN, a newly developed green technology that is optimizing initial oil production in completions and slowing declines. The biosurfuctant is formulated using biosurfactants with multifunctional properties for hydraulic fracturing that require as little as 1/50th of the dosage rate of traditional completions surfactants, significantly lowering costs. SUSTAIN helps oil operators boost IP and sustain those higher rates for longer periods to maximize operator profitability and EUR, which all work to increase the return on investment of unconventional wells, which is a must in today’s capital-challenged operating environment.

SUSTAIN’s biosurfactants can penetrate the smallest shale rock nanopores that other treatments cannot reach, mobilizing otherwise immobile oil and enhancing recovery in unconventional tight formations where pore throats are extremely small. Locus BE’s biosurfactants are less than 2 nm in diameter, significantly smaller than any other competing technologies, which increases penetration in the reservoir during hydraulic fracturing. Unlike traditional chemical surfactants, up to 50% of SUSTAIN’s biosurfactants are adsorbed in shale reservoirs and slowly desorb over time, providing continued long-term mobilization of oil after flowback. These ultralow effective dosage rates also ensure that SUSTAIN will continue to contribute to boosting production performance for months after application.

Company enters completions segment with launch of new splice tool

Ace Oil Tools has launched its Ace Splice Clamp (ASC) to the completions market. Allowing multiple lines to be spliced with a single clamp, the ASC is a sub-less downhole product that protects the control lines during completion. Combining the functionality of a shrouded crimp clamp for locking flatpacks with a splice sub into one single product, the ASC accepts a flatpack control line assembly. The design protects bare control lines and houses the splice blocks. The “one design fits all approach” of the ASC means that operators have the ability to utilize different vendors for the various products required and can still utilize the ASC to house all combinations.

New electric tool simplifies fishing operations

Wellgrab has secured the Research Council of Norway funding to support the launch of its new fishing tool called the Wellgrab Electric Release Fishing Tool (WERFT). The WERFT performed two operations in 2019 with WERFT version 1. The next-generation WERFT version 2 is scheduled to launch in the second quarter of 2021. The WERFT consists of a basic module and an accompanying tool pack with several special features. The concept combines several functions into one tool. With a combined control and communication system, it enables safer and more cost-effective fishing and pulling operations. Further, by pairing digital capabilities with a versatile, multifunctional tool, the WERFT drives safer and more cost-effective fishing operations. Current mechanical tools are often operated by the service operator pulling up or running down the wireline to which the tool is attached. When the geometry of the well is complex, this mechanical control is not precise causing unwanted misruns or failure. Designed to increase safety, the WERFT is controlled and activated from the surface, meaning that at the touch of a button, the operator can easily connect to or from any object that has to be fished out. The tool is applicable for retrieving plugs, all fishing operations and for relocating downhole assemblies.

Editor’s note: The copy herein is compiled from press releases and product announcements from service companies and does not reflect the opinions of Hart Energy. Submit your company’s updates related to new technology products and services to Faiza Rizvi at frizvi@hartenergy.com.

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