Well-Set is developing two unique but complementary products:
1.Magnetorheological Blended Cement (MRBC)
In order to plug and abandon a well, cement plugs are currently placed to form permanent barriers to prevent the flow of hydrocarbons to surface or seabed.
Cement is pumped in liquid form, and cement plugs typically take 6-8 hours to harden and set. During this setting period, cement is subject to gravitational migration, because liquid cement is the heaviest type of fluid present in a wellbore. If the cement plug cannot be placed on a solid ‘base’ (as is the case when annular barriers are required) the cement can therefore tend to slump and move away from the location where it was intended to act as a barrier.
Magneto-rheological blended cement can be instantly transformed from a liquid state to a ‘pseudo solid’ state under application of a magnetic field. This means that liquid MRBC plugs can be instantly ‘set’ under application of a magnetic field. During the time taken for the MRBC to permanently harden and develop compressive strength (6-8 hours), the barrier plug cannot slump and remains in the desired location in the wellbore.
MRBC also offers improved displacement efficiency when compared to conventional cement and is less susceptible to the effects of wellbore deviation and eccentric annuli.
2.Barrier Verification System (BVS)
Currently, well barriers are tested from above. Well-Set is developing a system to allow well barriers to be tested from below, in the direction of potential flow. We believe this can become ‘best available technology’ for well barrier verification - compliant with the ethos of NORSOK D-10.
The BVS offers the following benefits:
- 100% ‘Rigless’ Technology – deployment via wireline or coiled tubing.
- Low-volume test – provides unambiguous results.
- No need to rely on barriers being bi-directional.
- All potential surface leak paths are eliminated.
- If two barriers are present, the upper barrier can be accurately verified.
- Test pressure can be held for longer periods – increasing reliability of results.
- Pressure test can repeated if necessary – after allowing barrier medium more time to ‘set’.