Case Study: Operator in Deepwater Brazil Saves 12 Drilling Days and USD 14.1 Million of AFE

PowerDrive vorteX using PowerPak ERT and PowerDrive X6 assembly with Smith SHARC Bit technology is the new benchmark in drilling performance

Challenge: Mitigate high shock and vibration, improve overall drilling performance, and remove limiting factor to drilling optimization (differential pressure on motor).


  • Conduct extensive Project Readiness Assessment (PRA).
  • Drill the well using PowerDrive vorteX with PowerPak ERT high-performance motor and PowerDrive X6 RSS together with a Smith SHARC high-abrasion resistance PDC bit.
  • Monitor operations from OSC Operation Support Center in real time.


  • Drilled the well with zero service quality and HSE events.
  • Achieved all operator objectives and KPIs.
  • Saved 12 days of drilling time compared with time/depth curve.
  • Reached TD under AFE by USD 14.1 million.

Offshore Brazil, Santos Basin

An operator was looking for a significant improvement in drilling performance. Earlier wells in the campaign had experienced failures due to shock and vibration. The power section operating envelope was also a bottleneck, which limited the ability to optimize drilling parameters. This limitation led to drilling performance below the operator’s high expectations.

The Schlumberger team worked with the operator to perform an extensive Project Readiness Assessment (PRA) to enable a smooth startup and execution for drilling the final well. Together they identified the differential pressure applied to the motor as the limiting factor for optimizing the drilling parameters. To mitigate the issue, a PowerPak ERT high-performance motor was chosen to optimize the combination of PowerDrive vorteX and PowerDrive X6 systems with a Smith SHARC bit. OSC drilling engineers monitored the job in real time and interacted with the rig team to optimize drilling performance.

Use of the PowerV system allowed optimum parameters to be used while automatically maintaining verticality. The PowerPak ERT power section enabled higher differential pressures to be applied and maintained a consistent rpm at the bit, which further optimized the drill bit interaction with the formation. PowerPak ERT power sections also assisted in decoupling bit-induced stick/slip from the rest of the BHA.

Results speak for themselves

The combination of PowerDrive X6 RSS with PowerPak ERT power sections and Smith Bits SHARC technology resulted in a positive step change in drilling performance. The well was drilled in half the planned time, saving 12 days and USD 14.1 million of AFE. These results were accomplished with zero service quality or HSE incidents.

Download: Operator in Deepwater Brazil Saves 12 Drilling Days and USD 14.1 Million of AFE (0.75 MB PDF)

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Operator in Deepwater Brazil Saves 12 Drilling Days and USD 14.1 Million of AFE
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"Your team effectively communicated with ours to help maximize ROP while minimizing downhole shocks, stick/slip, and vibrations. We believe this type of proactive teamwork is the key to success in the harsh drilling environment of the presalt wells."
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