Technical Paper: Unified Team Approach: Leveraging Real-Time Capabilities Reduces NPT While Enhancing HSE Effectiveness

Society: SPE
Paper Number: 167919
Presentation Date: 2014
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Significant improvements in remote drilling operations have been made in recent years. With proper positioning, these advances could help mitigate the challenge of replacing a retiring workforce. Another concern when transitioning from a tenured employee to one with less experience is reduction in work efficiency. While data from the USA Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics has shown the trend for injury accidents has been steadily declining, incidents of non-productive time (NPT) have gone up significantly. It appears the traditional approach of passing knowledge to the next generation of engineers has been broken negatively impacting the drilling industry.

To address the disturbing trend, a Middle East operator has been investigating various technologies to facilitate improvement and reduce NPT issues. The provider has applied a strategic combination of services and modeling systems to achieve the objective including a real-time artificial neural network (ANN) drilling parameter optimization system which provides information to ensure maximum run length from all bits and downhole tools at the highest possible ROP. Benefits of the new system include extended tool life, fewer trips and the ability to manage the bit’s dull condition.

The provider's geo-service division managed the operation locally at the well site, while their drilling and measurement team monitored the processes at the operations service center in the Middle East. In Houston, the bit company offered technical assistance through effectively covering the drilling operation continuously. A key enabler was WITSML the open drilling standard that served as the backbone for ensuring data transfer between the various applications used to enable real-time drilling optimization.

The unified team approach engaged the operator as a key member in the planning and execution stages. The process yielded improved data visibility, making it easier to identify and reduce NPT. It also aided in improving workflow and furnished optimized drilling parameters at the rig-site to ensure improvement in drilling efficiency and higher ROP. By leveraging real-time data, operators can optimize drilling efficiency to help bridge the experience gap until the next generation of drilling engineers are fully trained.

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