Advances and Impact of Software-Based Deepwater Blow Out Preventer Testing
- C. Mark Franklin (IPT GLOBAL LLC) | Timothy L. Sargent (Noble Energy, Inc.) | Charles Ray Brown (Hamilton Engineering) | Gary Owen (Devon Energy) | Steve Griffith (Shell) | Jeremy Warwick Osmond (Hess Corporation) | Tore Gronas (Hydro Oil & Energy) | Richard Cully (IPT)
- Document ID
- Offshore Technology Conference
- Offshore Technology Conference, 2-5 May, Houston, Texas, USA
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2011. Offshore Technology Conference
- 1.10 Drilling Equipment, 4.2 Pipelines, Flowlines and Risers, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 6.1.5 Human Resources, Competence and Training
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To advance the technology of BOP leak detection through a software development initiative, operators, service provides, and drilling contractors established an industry consortium in early 2009. The initial development focused on the testing of BOPs in deepwater. Upon completion of the pilot program on five deepwater rigs, the results exceeded original expectations. The test results proved the software was effective, efficient, and rig friendly. Once a test plan was constructed, with the click of the "Start?? button, the software was completely automated, up to the time of printing the report.
Through an iterative and collaborative process, a unique solution for the Low Pressure (LP) and High Pressure (HP) BOP testing has been developed. For example, due to the constraints and subjective nature of the current Circular Chart Recorder (CCR) methodology for validating a test, a small leak may not be identified for up to 30 minutes into the HP test. With this new methodology, objective identification of a slow leak typically occurs during the LP portion of the test in less than three minutes; and a good test (no leak) typically validates in the regulatory agency's minimum holding time requirements. Additionally, the software provides greater assurances, transparency, and reliability as compared to the CCR. The antiquated CCR is easily manipulated in multiple ways, which is eliminated with this solution.
This software provides the industry with a tool for objective, efficient test validation. The software generates simple, clear, concise reports and contains more information as compared to what is currently available. It archives tests in a secure format, and the software allows the users to retrieve and review the tests for any required scrutiny. It also prints the reports to a secured PDF format and archives them.
This paper discusses the current state of the development along with the associated benefits. A vision of the application development pipeline for further pressure analysis opportunities is also introduced.
The oil and gas industry has advanced very little with respect to pressure testing critical equipment on drilling rigs. As the industry moves into operating in deeper water and uses non-water-based fluids, the challenges associated with obtaining effective pressure tests continue to grow.
Historically, digital pressure measurement solutions had not been considered due to its accuracy. Prevailing interpretations of regulatory requirements to "hold pressure?? were to demonstrate a flat-line on a pressure chart for a specified period of time. With the relatively low resolution of a CCR device, a flat-line was essentially produced when the resolution of the device was exceeded (typically 4-6 PSI). Analog chart recorders had the additional "benefit?? of allowing excessive damping and manipulation without recording such settings or actions.
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