I first started reading SPE Drilling Engineering around 1990, beforeit was renamed SPE Drilling & Completion in 1993. As a newcomer tothe subject, I remember finding many papers daunting and some quiteun-understandable. Writing technical papers requires thorough knowledge of thesubject, which is only to be expected, but writing good technicalpapers, which are readable and understandable, requires additional skills whichmay not be so ubiquitous. We do expect our readers to have a basic knowledge ofthe oilfield and of wells, but we should not demand any specific or detailedknowledge about the subjects being presented. A good paper brings the readerinto the subject, carries the reader through to the conclusions, and leaves thereader with a powerful learning experience.
As Executive Editor, my most powerful learning experience has been theappreciation of the vast diversity of our industry’s drilling and completionchallenges. There is a correspondingly vast diversity to our global readership.To approve papers for publication, I start by looking at each paper from theperspective of a reader with no specific or detailed knowledge.
Taking on the Executive Editor role two years ago gave me the opportunity tonudge this publication a little, remembering my early impressions as a readerof technical papers. After two short years, there are now only two weeks untilDecember 2007, so this is my final edition as Executive Editor. Before I handover to the new Executive Editor, Robert Mitchell, I wanted to briefly assessthese two years. In March 2006 I stated three objectives as ExecutiveEditor:
• to deliver the best possible publication we can achieve; providing youwith readable, understandable material with the potential to be applied to yourbusiness.
• to present a diversity of drilling and completion papers to give you theopportunity to broaden your awareness and challenge your perceptions.
• to encourage the idea that papers are an opportunity for a two-waydialogue, in which questions or clarifications should be raised with theauthors.
I think the SPE Peer Review team continues to do a great job on the firsttwo objectives. From my perspective, the papers published in SPE Drilling& Completion are amongst the best examples of today’s well engineeringchallenges and solutions, and they certainly carry interest, provide newlearnings and offer a global diversity. The third objective is much harder toassess; the e-library online forum has seen virtually no use to date. I thinkwe should keep working on this; to start off, I’d encourage all SPE PeerReviewers (890 people at the last count) to kick off discussions on the forum.I’ll make a resolution to try kick-starting a few online forum questions in thenew year.
To you, the subscribers and readers of SPE Drilling & Completion,I’d like to suggest two resolutions for the New Year;
I will cycle at least 100 miles during 2008; cycling is a great way ofappreciating just how much chemical energy is stored in a liter of hydrocarbonfuel. Regular cycling helps to develop a little more respect for the value andconservation of our finite hydrocarbons. Everyone knows that mankind needs tobecome smarter and more efficient at consuming hydrocarbons.
Secondly, I will make a determined effort to read, digest, and learn fromone or two papers in each edition of SPE Drilling and Completion, onceyou develop the habit of continuous learning, it is hard to shake off.Digesting these papers is a great way of broadening your knowledge,straightening out perspective, and throwing light on some of those areas thatyou’ve never quite had the chance to understand. You could also considersigning up for an SPE Peer Review team and review papers on a regular basis.Reviewing papers is a natural step beyond reading this publication.
However, I would recommend you don’t attempt these two resolutions at thesame time.
The papers of this issue cover a wide range of subjects; "DrillingWellbore Stability in the Compacting and Subsiding Valhall Field, A CaseStudy" presents the challenges of infill drilling in a carbonate reservoirwhich has seen depletion and subsidence.
"Analyses and Procedures for Kick Detection in Subsea MudliftDrilling" looks at one of the pieces of understanding needed to turndual-gradient drilling into a standard activity.
"Experimental Study on Cuttings Transport With Foam Under SimulatedHorizontal Downhole Conditions" presents improved understanding of drillingwith foam or other two-phase low density fluids.
"Through-Tubing Rotary Drilling From Njord Floating Platform" pushesthe envelope on reducing drilling costs in mature fields. In some regions, TTRDis a mainstay of late-life infill drilling, elsewhere it is not feasible.
Fracturing remains a core part of well construction in many areas of theworld. Technical advances continue to push the envelope of fracturing, forexample:
"Extreme Multistage Fracturing Improves Vertical Coverage and WellPerformance in the Lost Hills Field."
"Deepwater Horizontal Openhole Gravel Packing in Marlim Sul Field,Campos Basin, Brazil—Completion Project Learning Curve and Optimization"provides a valuable learning opportunity for the state of the art of OHGP’s indeep water.
"Brine Viscosity Correlation With Temperature Using the VTFEquation" provides a more accurate prediction tool for brineviscosity.
"Rapid Pressure Support for Champion SE Reservoirs by Multi-LayerFractured Water Injection" shows how water injectors often have a muchbigger influence on reservoir management than production wells.
In closing, thank you for your continued support of SPE Drilling &Completion. I wish Robert Mitchell the best of success as your newExecutive Editor. We just need a few hours of your time to read one or two ofthese papers to make all of the peer review work worthwhile.
Best regards, John Mason, firstname.lastname@example.org