April 2012 ///
A high-build-rate, rotary steerable drilling system is delivering well profiles previously possible only with positive displacement motors, yet with the superior rate of penetration and wellbore quality of a fully rotating system.
As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Pete Olson sits on the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, which maintains principal legislative oversight for the supply and delivery of energy. Accordingly, Congressman Olson has tried to learn all he can about oil and gas E&P, including a recent Eagle Ford shale field tour.
Careful consideration of location, existing infrastructure, facility concepts and options can result in effective, economic development of marginal fields offshore West Africa.
When commodity prices crater and supply exceeds hometown demand, you can either shut in production and await better times, or if you happen to be a producer in the gas-rich Horn River and Montney shale plays of British Columbia, seek out markets elsewhere, in this case some 8,000 mi away.
With the advancement in design standards, maintenance, testing and safety since the Macondo oil spill two years ago, a special emphasis is being placed at OTC 2012 on operational integrity and its fundamental role in offshore operations and regulatory changes.
The flow assurance team used solvent soaking and controlled pressurization techniques to release a pig/paraffin obstruction, and then applied an innovative process of flowline cleaning with a solution of dispersant and sea water at 12% of the cost of replacing the obstructed flowline.
At this time last year, the United States government had awarded only a handful of deepwater drilling permits after the prolonged moratorium that followed the Deepwater Horizon disaster. Rigs and investment dollars had been leaving the Gulf of Mexico at a staggering rate during that period, but all was not lost.
Work conducted by several firms through a procurement contract from the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA) has resulted in development of several options for deepwater testing of reservoirs in the Gulf of Mexico.
Regulator says rules not meant to stifle offshore
Turning on a dime or getting caught flat-footed
The art and science of oilfield storytelling
Peak Oil? — Not in Norway
Playing fast and loose with the facts—Obama style
Seventh OWL across the Gulf
The Niobrara formation—today it’s all about liquids, but gas will have its encore
News & Resources
Brazil’s offshore claims some of the world’s most prolific oil and gas regions. Predominant among them is the Santos basin, where giant petroleum deposits have been discovered below a salt layer that in places is over 2.5 km thick. In addition to the obvious challenges of reaching and completing these presalt reservoirs, drillers faced water depths over 2,000 m and locations over 300 km from shore. Nevertheless, with a prize this valuable—some estimates exceed 20 billion bbl of oil equivalent—the engineering and technology feats required were deemed worth it.
Industry safety training has evolved in recent years, from teachers and classrooms to standardized, web-based training. OPITO, the skills body that ensures safety and competency in the oil and gas industry, teamed up with Atlas, a provider of skills and learning technologies, to develop and deliver an online safety training program, which they are currently introducing in the U.S. World Oil spoke with Atlas CEO John Rowley.
Preventing corrosion on subsea architecture is critical for operators in their effort to maintain an asset’s integrity and extend field life. Cathodic protection (CP) is a cost-effective solution for the prevention of corrosion as part of a long-term integrity management strategy.
In oil and gas well drilling, one of the initial key elements is the conductor pipe. Offshore, the conductor pipe must be driven into the seabed at significant water depths, which presents its own set of difficulties. World Oil spoke with Andy Penman, president and managing director of Conductor Installation Services, an Actean company, a firm specializing in both onshore and offshore installation of conductors and pilings.
The oil and gas, healthcare and aviation industries may seem, at first glance, to have little in common. But all of them have the same general goals—lighter weights, higher efficiencies and more durable materials. Often, a technological breakthrough in one field of research can lead to unexpected benefits in another. World Oil talked to John Lammas, VP of Engineering for GE Oil & Gas, about recent advances in petroleum technology, and their sometimes unexpected origins.
Statoil is preparing an invitation to tender for a new type of drilling rig for mature fields on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS). The new rigs, known as category J, will be jack-ups designed by the industry on behalf of Statoil. The purpose is to make drilling and completion of production wells less expensive, more efficient and safer.
Aberdeen-based Churchill Drilling Tools, focused on delivering innovative systems for the drilling and completion sectors, achieved a 100% reliability target for its Smart Dart system in 2011, which enabled it to ramp-up production. The company will invest £500,000 (US $909,000) to expand production offering and workforce at its Crombie Road facility over the next two years.
Scantrol AS provides electronic control systems for offshore, fishing, and marine research applications. The company’s new active heave compensation system, Scantrol AHC, is a control system for winches and cranes used for subsea operations. It is designed to give precise control of load position when a vessel is in motion. The AHC can be adapted to all different hydraulic and electric winches.
Designated by Statoil as proven technology in 2012, the MudCube was introduced offshore and in the Marcellus shale play. Studies show a significant improvement in safety and environmental risks during drilling operations. This smart system is made up of integrated shale conveyor technology, a vacuum system, cuttings transport and cleaning packages, real-time monitoring systems, filtration medium failure detection, touch-screen controls and automation components.
TDW Offshore Services AS has designed and built a customized 48-in. SmartPlug pipeline pressure isolation tool to facilitate maintenance of Nord Stream AG’s twin pipeline system. Weighing approximately 12 tons, it is the largest SmartPlug tool ever produced.
International rope manufacturer Bridon is expanding the capabilities of offshore heavy-lifting systems. The historical challenge in deepwater operations has been to deploy 300 tonnes in 3,000 m (9,843 ft) of water. Now, as operators seek to reach greater depths, industry is increasingly demanding lifting systems that can deploy weights of 400 tonnes at depths up to 4,000 m (13,123 ft).
Aberdeen-based Stork Technical Services has launched an industry-first hot bolt clamp system that enables the safe removal and replacement of corroded bolts on live flanged connections that have eight bolts or less. The system has been extensively field-tested and was successfully utilized by Stork personnel for a recent project on a Chevron-operated asset in the North Sea.
Finland’s Cargotec has developed a new system for tug and supply vessels to change chain wheels while at sea. This system has the potential to eliminate countless trips to and from port. The company’s new MacGregor Chain Wheel Manipulator has won the Innovation of the Year award from an offshore support journal.
As anyone even remotely involved in the offshore oil and gas industry can certainly attest, it has been a challenging couple of years, to say the least. Like most of these businesses, Port Fourchon made the adjustments necessary to deal with a climate filled with uncertainties. Today, however, all the signposts suggest that we have turned the corner, and that the Gulf of Mexico is returning to the business of exploring for, producing, and servicing oil and gas.
After surviving hurricanes, a recession and the Macondo moratorium, Louisiana’s Port Fourchon has a bright future ahead, expanding its role as the home base of Gulf of Mexico deepwater activity.
Two years after the Macondo accident, and 18 months after the federal moratorium that it spurred was lifted, the Gulf Economic Survival Team finds itself working as hard as ever to speed up an excruciatingly slow offshore well permitting process.
Louisiana officials are working to overcome the latest federal denial of funds to rebuild the deteriorating highway that links Port Fourchon to the rest of the state, even though the Department of Homeland Security has declared the road critical to the nation’s energy security.
A recently imposed federal regulation that compels operators to plug and abandon wells is expanding opportunities for service companies in the decommissioning sector of the Gulf of Mexico market.
For more than 15 years, Gulf of Mexico operators have soundly embraced Proline Systems’ HSE-friendly approach to the delivery and handling of drilling fluids offshore. However, the New Iberia, La., company recently received a most unlikely endorsement, from none other than Hall of Fame, NFL quarterback Terry Bradshaw.
Limpet Technology of Edinburgh, Scotland, has designated Delta Rigging & Tools as the primary distributor for its uniquely engineered Limpet Fall Protection and Climb Assist technology.
The Greater Lafourche Port Commission’s Fourchon Beach Repair and Renourishment Project received a major boost in March 2012, thanks to a $500,000 donation by Shell Oil Co. on behalf of its Mars B Deepwater Platform Project.