Stick Slip mitigation for DC Top Drives within reach.
Stick slip mitigation – EPST, Electroproject Softtorque
Electroproject Softtorque (EPST) has proven its value mitigating stick slip since 2010 on hundreds of rigs worldwide. Out performed by Electroproject novel Advanced Softtorque system (AST), EPST is since 2018 only delivered to drilling rigs equipped with DC top drives (direct current fed top drives).
For DC top drives, EPST is the stand-alone, proven solution to tackling stick slip issues. Developed in close collaboration with major industry partners, the system has already been effectively implemented worldwide. EPST is the only Shell certified Softtorque system for DC applications. Solving stick slip issues on drilling operations using DC top drives. Stick slip is a common occurrence in drilling operations, independent of the use of DC or AC top drives.
Softtorque technology for DC top drives
At certain depths and depending on drill conditions, the drill bit can ‘stick’ downhole while the drill strings continue to rotate. The drill pipe acts as a torsional spring. At a certain torque value, the ‘stick’ friction is overcome and the drill bit suddenly increases in speed while the drill pipe ’unwinds’ itself. This sudden increase in speed can damage the bit and the bottomhole assembly and will result in a decrease in rate of penetration and lost time.
Important operational benefits
This phenomena, recognized as a major cost, can now be effectively countered by implementing EPST. Making the DC top drive as effective as the more expensive AC systems. The measured results are impressive. Proven results include:
- Increased penetration speed – a constant speed and the possibility to increase pressure on the drill head, result in faster drilling
- Less wear on drill heads – means drill heads last longer and require less replacement
- Improved safety – because drilling proceeds more smoothly, vibration and abrupt movements are reduced, increasing safety.
Stick slip damage:
No damage with Softtorque controller used
Addressing the challenges of DC control
To guarantee optimum system performance, EP Softtorque is a made-to-measure system. Prior to the implementation of the Softtorque system, Electroproject engineers conduct an extensive survey of a client’s drilling platform installation. The EPST controller is then adapted to integrate seamlessly with the SCR controller.
Advantages of EP Softtorque’s proven technology
- A system designed to be implemented in DC top drives
- A stand-alone µ-processor-based controller
- Operation without requiring interface with RIG controls
- Existing rig controls can remain unchanged
- System commissioning completed within hours.
- The system can be switched ‘On’ or ‘Off’ on demand – without compromising TD control abilities – using the high resolution touch screen
- Operating independently from any rig controls, the state-of-the-art visualization equipment offers real time data identifying down hole drill behaviour
- WITS communication
- High frequency data logging
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