VAM SPRINT-SF Successful Field Trials in Permian Basin in Texas
VAM SPRINT-SFVallourec

VAM SPRINT-SF Successful Field Trials in Permian Basin in Texas

An operator in the Permian Basin in Texas in Midland County has just completed a series of field runs of the VAM SPRINT-SF solution. Designed for

An operator in the Permian Basin in Texas in Midland County has just completed a series of field runs of the VAM SPRINT-SF solution. Designed for onshore drilling, this innovative connection allowed our customer to benefit from an exceptionally high operational torque and an efficient running time with only 3.5 turns to make up and zero reject. Unconventional wells have evolved in design as operators push the boundaries for increased efficiencies. In turn, the quest for these increased efficiencies has driven the need for new tubular technology to be developed. VAM SPRINT-SF is a new connection that was developed to help operators with this challenge. An operator in the Permian Basin in Texas was able to take advantage of the new design in a series of field runs in Midland County. The exceptionally high operational torque allowed them to overcome friction and safely rotate during cementing with reduced risks of interior diameter restrictions. It also allowed them to plan for an extended lateral and the torque that would be required to get the casing to bottom. With less than four turns to make up, VAM SPRINT-SF allowed for efficient running time with zero rejects.

Industry standard semi-premium connections are being used in unconventional wells in a manner that they weren’t designed or tested for at the time of their development. Casing strings are often “worked” into the hole with high tension/compression and torque combined loads. In addition, high numbers of completion stages are adding ever-increasing fatigue loads. An operator in West Texas approached Vallourec with problems manifesting themselves as internal diameter restrictions adding remedial operational time and cost to their wells. They also had a desire to use higher torque for a new cementing practice but were unsure of combined load limits.

VAM USA partnered with the operator for an in-depth study. Well loads were used with FEA models and WELLCAT for a digital copy of the wells. In those models, it was found that when working the pipe, high levels of torque were applied at the same time as high tension and compression. All loads in isolation were within connection ratings. However, the combined loading resulted in load points outside of the connection operating envelope and the model predicted the restrictions at the depths seen in the field.

This modeling scenario was utilized in the development of the new VAM SPRINT-SF. The same FEA/ WELLCAT approach allowed for effective modeling of operating limits which were then used for physically testing in VAM USA’s Connection Technology Center. The operator followed the development and offered operational information. Once the design was validated through physical testing, they opted for a four well trial with 5 and half inch, 20# VAM SPRINT-SF, capable of delivering 40,000 feet lbs. With a Total Measured Depth of over 24,500 feet and casing joints pushing the limits of Range 3 length at over 46 feet, 10% fewer connections had to be made up as compared with industry standard casing length. Fast make-up was proven with 3.5 turns to optimum torque after stabbing. Zero rejects were seen on the first run that averaged close to 30 jts/hr.

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