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Selecting a Clear Brine Fluid (CBF) for deepwater completion is-or at least should be-a complex process. Impaired production experiences are caused by localized corrosion, stress crack failures of tubing metallurgy or by formation damage, as fluids react chemically with production gases or fluid additives. Besides technical complexity, economics drives operators to seek a thorough understanding of best practices for fluid selection and use. CBF cost can exceed $1 million dollars for some offshore completions.
CBFs are versatile materials. They are used as a displacement fluid to remove drilling muds, as drill-in fluids or as permanent packer fluid. Through proper selection of inorganic salt mixtures, a CBF can be formulated to balance nearly all wellbore pressures found in the field.
Understanding chemistry and chemical interactions of CBFs is essential for selecting the most cost-effective fluid, especially for the demanding requirements of high-pressure, high-temperature (HPHT) well completions.
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