Brochure: HydraGlyde High-performance water-base drilling fluid system

Date: 10/6/2015

High performance and low cost in shales

Given the economic and environmental constraints of the North American shale plays, oil-base drilling fluids are not always the optimal choice. The exceptional drillability of nonaqueous muds in high-angle, long-reach horizontal land wells is offset by tremendously high logistical and waste-management costs that can account for half the total drilling fluids bill. And while conventional high-performance water-base drilling fluids mitigate many environmental issues, their price is often prohibitive for use in these high-rate plays. Most premier water-base mud formulations lack the engineering flexibility to address the unique drilling conditions of widely diverse onshore shale plays, which demand more than a one-size fits-all fluid system.

Recognizing that no two shale plays are alike as well as the need to rein in costs, M-I SWACO, a Schlumberger company, developed the HydraGlyde high-performance water-base drilling fluid system specifically for the economically challenging North American onshore unconventional sector. The system provides a fast, trouble-free, flexible drilling fluid solution that fits within rigid AFE constraints. Its novel and low-cost chemistry reduces torque and drag in addition to shale swelling and dispersion. It delivers oil mud–comparable ROP, exceptional hole cleaning, and wellbore stability in high-angle-build and long-lateral sections—all while reducing restrictive costs and limiting environmental liabilities. 

Comprising only three components, the HydraGlyde system greatly simplifies customization of the rheological profile for individual shale characteristics and drilling conditions. The foundation of the HydraGlyde system is the novel HydraSpeed ROP enhancer, which delivers exceptional lubricity that helps provide drilling rates that not only mimic, but have actually exceeded, those of an oil-base mud. Additionally, the HydraGlyde system deposits a high-quality filtercake and delivers a smooth, low-tortuosity wellbore that minimizes the risks of differential sticking during drilling while clearing the way for trouble-free running of casing and completion hardware.

The value of HydraGlyde is reflected in the bottom line, with the most challenging unconventional wells drilled efficiently from kickoff to the reservoir at a fraction of the costs of oil-base mud and conventional high-performance water-base drilling fluids.

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