Advanced MPD delivers predictive ROP, optimizes drilling efficiency in Montney shale ///

Applying automated managed pressure drilling (MPD) technology and distinctive drilling rate/mud density predictive modeling has enabled safe optimization of rate of penetration (ROP) in a three-well unconventional drilling program in Western Canada's largely over-pressured and naturally-fractured Montney formation. Specifically, the capacity to manage differential pressures, and align advanced MPD technology with the predicted ROP, enabled the wells to be drilled trouble-free with low-weight, synthetic-based drilling fluid and with appreciably higher drilling rates. By comparison, offset wells drilled with conventional open-to-atmosphere circulation systems required a roughly 11.22 lb/gal mud weight, which effectively restrained average ROP to approximately 10.8 ft/hr. The automated MPD configuration drilled the competent shale intervals at a mud density of just under 8.0 lb/gal, yet averaged ROP of 24.2 ft/hr, with peak rates of 34.4 ft/hr.

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