Jill Scott said:
“I need to find a creative diversity because if I get stuck, I get unhappy.”
At times we all find ourselves stuck in different aspects of our lives. Maybe not for the same reason; sometimes it could be fear, guilt, nostalgia and even boredom, but the result is the same.
But then, how can we get out of it? How do we get unstuck? The answer is very simple: “we find the problem and along with it, we find the solution”. Let’s take this example and apply it to the drilling process.
During a drilling operation, if a pipe cannot be freed from the hole without causing any damages to the pipe and without exceeding the drilling rig’s maximum hook load this is considered a stuck pipe. Pipe sticking can be classified under two categories:
- Differential pressure pipe sticking
- Mechanical pipe sticking
When having complications due to a stuck pipe this can be nearly half of the total cost of the well, making stuck pipe one of the most expensive problems that can occur during a drilling operation and is a serious risk in high-angle and horizontal wells.
Drilling through depleted zones, where the pressure in the annulus surpasses that in the formation, might cause the drillstring to be pulled against the wall and embedded in the filter cake deposited there. The internal cake pressure diminishes at the point where the drillpipe contacts the filter cake, causing the pipe to be held against the wall by the differential pressure. In high-angle and horizontal wells, the gravitational force contributes to prolonged contact between the drillstring and the formation.
What are some of the mechanical causes for stuck pipe?
- Packoff from poor hole-cleaning
- Shale swelling
- Wellbore collapse
- Plastic-flowing formation (i.e., salt)
What are some of the signs that need to be monitored to prevent stuck pipe?
- Increasing in torque and drag
- Excessive cuttings loading
- Tight spots while tripping
- Loss of circulation while drilling
Depending on what the suspected cause of sticking is, it is necessary to act properly and urgently.
There is a tool developed by PVI Called StuckPipePro, which is a stuck pipe analysis that every operator should have to reduce the risks of pipe sticking to the minimum. This effective tool is equipped with great features, for example: stuck chance calculation, free point calculation, back-off force calculation, stuck pipe mechanism, which assist in determining the mechanism that is actually behind the stuck pipe situation and which technique should be used to free the pipe. It also comes with a decision flow chart that guides users through a series of questions to find the cause of pipe sticking.
Just like the phrase of being stuck said by Jill Scott; once we find the problem, we’ll find the solution, in this case, with StuckPipePro.