Industry Article: Cuttings Transport Evaluation Reduces Wellbore Instability Risks

The automated system tracks hole cleaning efficiency to optimize drilling in longer and more complex wellbores

Cuttings transport evaluation reduces wellbore instability risks
Publication: E&P
Publication Date: 12/01/2015

Surface monitoring of drill cuttings is a popular method of determining hole cleaning efficiency and borehole stability, but conventional methods are imprecise and do not deliver timely information to the driller.

The Schlumberger CLEAR hole cleaning and wellbore risk reduction service provides an automated, real-time monitoring alternative that analyzes drill cuttings at the shale shaker to clarify the drilling team’s progress in the well and help avoid stability problems.

The service consists of a cuttings flowmeter and weighing tray that records the weight of cuttings at predetermined intervals, and an acquisition system that computes a volumetric cuttings flow rate from the recorded weights. The service then compares the measured volumetric flow with a theoretical flow calculated from the rate of penetration (ROP) of the bit. These comparisons are correlated with other drilling parameters in a real-time data dashboard that allows rig crews and offsite support experts to collaborate on timely and more informed drilling decisions.

Field deployments in the Middle East and Southeast Asia highlight the service’s ability to optimize drilling operations by improving wellbore trajectory to target, while enabling changes to drilling mud rheology that improve hole cleaning and increase ROP.

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The CLEAR service uses cumulative cuttings volume measurement to monitor hole cleaning and condition.
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