A High-Pressure/High-Temperature Bridge Plug
- Chris Carpenter (JPT Technology Editor)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- September 2014
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 113 - 115
- 2014. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 6 in the last 30 days
- 227 since 2007
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This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper SPE 166382, "A State-of-the-Art Completion Technological Innovation: The First 25,000-psi, 500°F Permanent Bridge Plug," by Tony Ruffo, SPE, Guijun Deng, SPE, James Doane, SPE, Gary Anderson, SPE, Douglas Lehr, SPE, and Scott Collins, SPE, Baker Hughes, prepared for the 2013 SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, New Orleans, 30 September-2 October. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
Conventional high-pressure/ high-temperature (HP/HT) packer and bridge-plug technology is generally limited to long-term operation at 15,000 psi and 450°F. A great deal of research-and-development effort has been put into extending performance beyond these limits. Recently, an innovative approach was applied to this problem, with the objectives of increasing these limits and enabling long-term isolation in ultra-HP/HT wells. This approach resulted in the development of an ultra-HP/HT permanent bridge plug for long-term exposure at 25,000-psi pressure and temperatures of 500°F.
The process of completing an ultra- HP/HT well with temperatures approaching 500°F and hydrostatic pressures approaching 35,000 psi is evolving at a rapid pace, and the industry has identified a need for a standalone barrier to isolate the shoe track in these wells. This barrier is required in these applications to mitigate uncertainties related to shoe-track integrity. Historically, bridge plugs for use in ultra-HP/HT applications (greater than 20,000-psi differential pressure and 450°F) have not been available in the marketplace, but the demand for competent, long-term isolation has led to the development of new HP/HT technologies—specifically, ultra- HP/HT bridge plugs.
Recently, an operator of an ultra-HP/ HT well identified the need for a bridge plug capable of operation at a 25,000-psi pressure differential (from above and below) and at 500°F. This bridge plug was required to function in a 6?-in. outer diameter (OD) casing over the weight range of 57.58 to 60.1 lbm/ft. Furthermore, the bridge plug had to meet validation and International Organization of Standardization requirements and possess an estimated service life equal to that of the 6?-in. casing.
A materials-screening and -qualification program was used in the design of the bridge plug. The result was a list of three perfluoroelastomer compounds that were evaluated for various seal configurations. Three metallic alloys were also identified for use in the pressure-containing, structural, gripping, and sealing components in the bridge plug. A surface-treatment-qualification program also identified two coatings for use in combating friction and galling. This effort required 18 months.
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