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M-I Swaco gets SMART on displacements

Written by  Audrey Leon Monday, 01 April 2013 00:00

M-I Swaco, a Schlumberger Company, took OE on a tour of its new SMART 3D package of integrated displacement services. Audrey Leon reports from Houston.

MM-I SWACO unveiled its SMART 3D displacement package on February 28 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, offering an integrated, customizable package of mechanical, chemical, and hydraulic displacement services provided by a single company.

M-I SWACO s MultiBack tool (center) runs on the workstring to contact and clean 360-degrees of the casing s inside diameter.

“Displacement operations are often marginalized because no single group owns the operation,” the company says. With SMART 3D, M-I SWACO will service all aspects of displacement so that the wellbore is properly prepared for completion or production.

M-I SWACO developed its drilling fluid-to-brine displacement operations at its Houston Technology Center. SMART 3D aims to reduce non-productive time (NPT), risk of formation damage, and crosscontamination of drilling fluids and brines, both on- and offshore. M-I SWACO says all displacements have three core dimensions: fluid hydraulics, mechanical debris removal, and chemical debris removal. The company argues that 30% of failed completions result from poor debris management, where fluid or drilling residue remains in the hole after displacement.

At the heart of SMART 3D is a series of tools that facilitate cleanup operations. M-I SWACO’s BRISTLE BACK and RAZORBACK tools scrape and brush debris from casing walls while the pipe runs in the hole. The WELL SCAVENGER, introduced in 2011, cleans above FIVs and other critical areas during pre-production debris removal.

M-I SWACO’s range of solvent and surfactant chemical spacers prevent incompatible synthetic- or oil-base drilling fluids and completion brines from creating viscous emulsions, which could jeopardize displacement. The DEEPCLEAN additive is a non-aqueous fluid cleaning agent that satisfies all the requirements of a multiple-stage displacement train with a single product.

Additionally, M-I SWACO’s Virtual Completion Solutions (VCS) modeling software is designed to simulate displacements utilizing actual information on well geometry, casing, drill string dimensions, and active mud properties. With this data, engineers can design a displacement to optimize elements such as contact time, flow regime and pump pressures.

A deepwater operator in Nigeria sought an alternative to the displacement recommendations and chemicals of the local provider that would reduce both rig time and on-site inventory requirements. Previous displacements required five or more circulations before the Nephelometric Turbidity Unit (NTU) was below 100, which was the operator’s criteria for a clean well.

M-I SWACO recommended a DEEPCLEAN spacer train in conjunction with the BRISTLEBACK and RAZORBACK mechanical wellbore cleanup tools. A multi-function circulating tool was utilized to increase circulation rates. The entire displacement was modeled in VCS to ensure the proper flow regimes and contact times could be achieved within the limitations of the rig equipment.

The well cleaned up just a few cubic meters after the spacers cleared the surface. NTU values were within specification and the drill pipe was pulled out of the hole clean and water-wet with no trace of residual mud film. More than 18 hours of rig time was saved and on-site displacement chemical inventory requirements were cut in half.

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