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Managed Pressure Drilling Technology: A Research on the Formation Adaptability

Chenglong Wang1, Hexing Liu1, Yaya Liu1, Xi Xia2, Fan Xiao3,*, Ningyu Zheng3

1 Zhanjiang Branch, CNOOC (China) Co., Zhanjiang, 524057, China
2 Zhanjiang Engineering Technology Branch, CNOOC Energy Development Co., Zhanjiang, 524057, China
3 China University of Petroleum (East China), Qingdao, 266555, China

* Corresponding Author: Fan Xiao. Email:

(This article belongs to this Special Issue: Dynamics and Materials Processing in Petroleum Engineering)

Fluid Dynamics & Materials Processing 2022, 18(6), 1865-1875. 10.32604/fdmp.2022.021668


Existing pressure drilling technologies are based on different principles and display distinct characteristics in terms of control pressure and degree of formation adaptability. In the present study, the constant-bottom-hole-pressure (CBHP) and controlled-mud-level (CML) dual gradient drilling methods are considered. Models for the equivalent circulating density (ECD) are introduced for both drilling methods, taking into account the control pressure parameters (wellhead back pressure, displacement, mud level, etc.) and the relationship between the equivalent circulating density curve in the wellbore and two different types of pressure profiles in deep-water areas. The findings suggest that the main pressure control parameter for CBHP drilling is the wellhead back pressure, while for CML dual gradient drilling, it is the mud level. Two examples are considered (wells S1 and B2). For S1, CML dual gradient drilling only needs to adjust the ECD curve once to drill down to the target layer without risk. By comparison, CBHP drilling requires multiple adjustments to reach the target well depth avoiding a kick risk. In well B2, the CBHP method can drill down to the desired zone or even deeper after a single adjustment of the ECD curve. In contrast, CML dual-gradient drilling requires multiple adjustments to reach the target well depth (otherwise there is a risk of lost circulation). Therefore, CML dual-gradient drilling should be considered as a better choice for well S1, while CBHP drilling is more suitable for well B2.


Cite This Article

Wang, C., Liu, H., Liu, Y., Xia, X., Xiao, F. et al. (2022). Managed Pressure Drilling Technology: A Research on the Formation Adaptability. FDMP-Fluid Dynamics & Materials Processing, 18(6), 1865–1875.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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