Baker Hughes Incorporated
  • Houston, Texas, United States
Recent publications
In the oil and gas reservoirs, the interaction between the injected fluids and the reservoir fluids and rocks plays a major role in the productivity of any oil and gas field. Studying the ion exchange between reservoir fluids and the injected fluids for water flooding or chemical enhanced oil recovery purposes would help in optimizing the oil displacement process and hence the productivity form such secondary or tertiary recovery mechanisms. Chelating agents are used for enhance oil recovery to improve the oil displacement and sweep efficiency by altering the reservoir rock’s surface. When it comes to fluid-rock interaction, conductivity and ionic activity of the injected water will have a great impact on the rock’s surface charge and therefore in the reservoir’s wettability. Dielectric laboratory measurements have the ability to observe the change in conductivity at high frequency due to the presence of free ions and salts in fluids. In this work, observing the effect of chelating agent with different salts on high frequency conductivity using laboratory dielectric measurements has been conducted. Introducing laboratory dielectric measurement could be a valuable tool in the lab as an evaluation technique into the ion exchange that occurs between different fluids from the reservoir with different brines and additives to study the fluid–fluid interaction activities. It can be also utilized to investigate the maximum chelating capacity of different chelating agents with different cations which can be reflected by the change in conductivity.
The dielectric approach is considered as one of the measurements that have potential in characterizing dissipative mediums which have an electrical contrast in their comprising elements. Recently, there have been remarkable research and development activities aiming to link dielectric responses to different petrophysical properties. Wettability is considered a key parameter in many reservoir engineering aspects including evaluating reservoir performance and designing enhanced oil recovery processes. The rock wettability controls the majority of the electrochemical interactions between the solid grain and the ionically-dissipative fluid. These interactions provide an excellent environment for dielectric measurements to display some dispersion mechanisms under the influence of alternating frequency. This paper presents a comprehensive review on the use of the dielectric approach for wettability evaluation. The majority of the reviewed studies were either a qualitative investigation of this relationship or empirical prediction models for the dielectric measurements based on many inputs which are not available most of the time. Even though significant work has been done in this area, there are still gaps that can be improved and fulfilled. Wettability was still not explored quantitatively through a measurable indicator from the dielectric measurements, for example, no wettability index was developed based on the dielectric approach. Therefore, dielectric could provide an efficient, accurate, and economical wettability index that can be implemented in the industry. Overall, this work aims to review the literature and pave the road for quantifying the wettability index via dielectric measurements.
Storage of energy-related products in the geologic subsurface provides reserve capacity, resilience, and security to the energy supply chain. Sequestration of energy-related products ensures long-term isolation from the environment and, for CO 2 , a reduction in atmospheric emissions. Both porous-rock media and engineered caverns can provide the large storage volumes needed today and in the future. Methods for site characterization and modeling, monitoring, and inventory verification have been developed and deployed to identify and mitigate geologic threats and hazards such as induced seismicity and loss of containment. Broader considerations such as life-cycle analysis; environment, social and governance (ESG) impact; and effective engagement with stakeholders can reduce project uncertainty and cost while promoting sustainability during the ongoing energy transition toward net-zero or low-carbon economies.
Delicate grasping of complex diverse objects is a challenging task for underwater vehicles, such as remotely operated vehicles (ROVs). In this article, a novel controllably compliant soft robotic underwater gripper is presented, which uses two neutrally buoyant particle jamming pads to safely and securely grasp arbitrarily shaped objects, including fragile and/or massive targets. Antagonistic low-friction rolling diaphragm hydraulic cylinders are used to control the compliance of the jaw closure to passively limit the total force applied during the approach. The antagonistic hydraulic cylinders also compensate for the volume reduction of the pads during the jamming process while still enabling rigid grasp during manipulation. Soft finger-like fiber-reinforced actuators are used to maintain the shape of pads without introducing rigid elements. Force limitation is demonstrated by the ability to pick up fragile objects without breakage and to surround soft targets without excessive deformation of the object. We present the overall design, experimental setup, and in-water testing using a compact ROV-based hydraulic drive system. The resulting system has demonstrated capability for grasping a diverse range of objects that vary widely in terms of weight, size, and geometry, largely enabled by the hybrid design of soft grippers guiding jamming pads into optimal configurations.
This paper presents a high-level overview of site characterization, risk analysis, and monitoring priorities for underground energy-related product storage or sequestration facilities. The siting of an underground energy-related product storage or sequestration facility depends on several important factors beginning with the area of review. Collection of all existing and available records and data from within the rock volume, including potential vulnerabilities such as prior containment issues, proximity to infrastructure and/or population centers, must be evaluated. Baselining of natural processes before storage or sequestration operations begin provides the basis for assessing the effects of storage or sequestration on the surroundings. These initial investigations include geological, geophysical, and geochemical analyses of the suitability of the geological host rock and environs for storage or sequestration. A risk analysis identifies and evaluates threats and hazards, the potential impact should they develop into unwanted circumstances or events, and the consequences to the facility should any of them occur. This forms the basis for framing effective mitigation measures. combines the identified threats (unactualized hazards) and hazards, their potential magnitudes, and the consequences to the facility should any of them occur. This forms the basis for framing effective mitigation measures. Risk analyses produce deterministic and/or probabilistic predictions whose utility depends on the quality of threat, hazard, and consequence characterization. A comprehensive monitoring program that may include downhole well surveillance, observation wells, geochemical sampling, and well testing ensures that the facility operates as designed and that unforeseen issues, such as product migration or loss of integrity, can be identified and mitigated. In addition to these technical issues, human factors and public perception of a project are a critical part of the site characterization, construction, and operational phases of a project. Despite differences between underground storage and sequestration, sets of characterization, risk analysis, and monitoring approaches that were developed for underground natural gas storage or for carbon dioxide sequestration could be used for underground storage or sequestration of any type of energy-related product. Recommendations from this work include: (1) develop an industry-standard evaluation protocol (workflow) for the evaluation of salt beds, aquifers, depleted reservoirs, underground mines and cased wellbores for potential underground storage or sequestration development beyond those in use today; and (2) develop an industry-wide collaborative process whereby incident and near-miss data related to underground storage or sequestration operations can be reported, documented, and shared for use in refining risk analysis modeling.
Valve systems are essential components in piping systems in a variety of industries, including oil and gas to stop and start the flow of fluid, regulate and control fluids, prevent backflows, and provide safety. The safety and reliability of industrial valves is an increasingly critical issue that has been addressed in previous studies. In case of valve failure due to mechanical failure, material corrosion, poor manufacturing and testing, there can be negative consequences including loss of assets, leakage into the environment, and other issues. The objective of this study is to develop a method for measuring the safety and reliability of safety critical butterfly valves by combining safety integrity level (SIL) and failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA). On the basis of operational data, butterfly valve failure rates are estimated. Safe failure fraction (SFF) are calculated at approximately 89% for the valves and converted into SIL2 that meets the end-user requirements.
The high porosity and permeability stromatoporoid/coral facies partly characterize some of the most productive supergiant Late Jurassic carbonate reservoirs in the Middle East. Reservoir models often overlook detailed morphology and distributions of this facies due to the limited resolution of subsurface data. 3D morphological architecture and distribution of the Late Jurassic stromatoporoid/coral buildups are poorly understood as not many studies specifically investigate these aspects. This study performs a full three-dimensional outcrop investigation of the stromatoporoid/coral complex part of the Late Jurassic Hanifa reservoir analog in Wadi Birk, Saudi Arabia. We investigated spatial correlation, clustering tendencies, scaling relationships, and comprehensive statistical description over a 1.2 × 1 km area analog to a small-scale sectoral model of a typical Middle Eastern oilfield. This study utilizes integrated datasets including measured sections, drone-based digital outcrop model (DOM), core, ground penetrating radar (GPR), and shallow seismic to perform a full three-dimensional outcrop investigation. We identify and map three levels of the scaling hierarchy of the buildups: S1, S2, and S3. S1-scale buildups (a few meters in length) combine to form S2 clusters (∼35 m in length), which in turn may grow into larger S3 complexes (∼128 m in length). S1-scale buildups are near-circular and isotropic. However, as the S1 buildups cluster and grow into S2 and S3, their circular shape evolves into pseudo-ellipsoids with a strong preferential orientation towards northwest-southeast. The S2 and S3-scale amalgamated buildups are associated with asymmetric flank accumulation towards the northwest. We propose that the orientation of the S2 and S3-scale buildups and associated flanks are attributed to hydrodynamic currents driven by paleo-trade winds. This study also performs a brief static connectivity assessment to demonstrate the subsurface implications of these facies to field development planning. Results show that a vertical 5-spot pattern with a 1 km spacing can, in the best case, only access 14% of the Gross Rock Volume of the build-up facies due to the extreme lateral heterogeneity. Some 84% of the build-ups would be connected via flank and other facies with significantly different reservoir quality. This result underlines the extreme heterogeneity of the late Jurassic shallow-water platform carbonates and the potential for substantial quantities of bypassed hydrocarbons remaining in subsurface analog reservoirs.
Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), seen as a necessary technology to mitigate global greenhouse gas emissions, requires traceable fiscal metering technologies for large-scale deployment. The present work assesses ultrasonic measurement principles for CO <sub xmlns:mml="" xmlns:xlink="">2</sub> . Static tests with pure CO <sub xmlns:mml="" xmlns:xlink="">2</sub> at pressure and temperature conditions relevant for CCS transport via ships and pipelines were undertaken; and the performance of the ultrasonic signals assessed. The effect that the CO <sub xmlns:mml="" xmlns:xlink="">2</sub> attenuation has on the signal quality is evaluated over various densities. The speed of sound measurements are presented and compared to theoretical figures. The results demonstrate that acoustic coupling efficiency of the ultrasonic wave from the transducer into the liquid is strong at high densities, but it deteriorates at transport conditions above 293 K. Consequently, measurement perspectives for shipping and pipeline conditions below 280 K show superior performance for the ultrasonic system under test. This paper also explores the limitations of ultrasonic technology for speed of sound and inter-channel variations.
One of the most important issues in the valve industry is the mechanical integrity between the valves and the actuators. Applied loads from the actuator that exceed the maximum load that can be tolerated by the valve stem pose a great risk to this integrity. This study develops a flowchart for ensuring the integrity between the valve and the actuator by adopting at least one of the following solutions: adding a pressure safety valve on the control panel of pneumatic actuators, reducing the spring torque of the actuators, and increasing the MAST by upgrading the material and/or increasing the stem diameter. Five actuated fail-safe closed ball valves were analyzed in terms of valve and actuator torques at five points and with air pressures of 5.5, 7, and 9 bar as well as the MAST. The MAST and integrity between the valve and the actuator did not pose problems in two cases; the use of at least one of the abovementioned solutions is proposed to ensure integrity between the valve and the actuator in terms of the MAST and actuator torque in the other three cases.
Stellite is a cobalt-chromium alloy that is widely used for hard facing of the industrial valves' internal components, including the seat and closure member, to prevent erosion and cavitation. Although previous studies have emphasized using stellite to avoid erosion and wearing of substrates, most of them do not focus on applying this material for the valve industry in oil and gas projects. Thus, the present study mainly aims to provide a method to qualify the stellite 6 hardfacing applied on the low-temperature carbon steel (LTCS) valve body contact surface with disks and ensure that the weld overlay is used correctly. This study has developed a weld overlay qualification method including various tests such as Non-destructive test (NDT), Charpy V-Notch test, chemical composition, hardness test, and finally micro examination. The results of the trials and interpretation and evaluation are also included in this research.
Processing crudes with high naphthenic acid content causes corrosion problems on the crude oil distillation units. The total acid number (TAN) is commonly used to evaluate the corrosivity of crude oils; thus for decision-making related to corrosion mitigation and control in refineries. However, the TAN only represents the number of carboxylic groups present in the crude oil and does not consider the structural characteristics of the naphthenic acids, nor their reactivity, which are highly relevant to corrosion. On the other hand, the study of naphthenic acids as fractions with specific structural characteristics should enable the identification of differences in the corrosivity of crude oil with the same naphthenic acid concentration. In this research work, the fractioning of a commercial mixture of naphthenic acids was performed using the ionic strength of their respective salts. The structural characterization of the obtained fractions was conducted using Fourier-transform infrared and mass spectroscopy, gel permeation chromatography, and nuclear magnetic resonance. Furthermore, the corrosion rate of AISI SAE 1005 steel exposed to each fraction of naphthenic acids in the temperature range between 270 and 350 ºC was determined. Based on these results, a kinetic model of parallel reactions for predicting the concentration of dissolved iron in crude oil containing a mixture of naphthenic acids is proposed and validated.
Deep learning for nondestructive evaluation (NDE) has received a lot of attention in recent years for its potential ability to provide human level data analysis. However, little research into quantifying the uncertainty of its predictions has been done. Uncertainty quantification (UQ) is essential for qualifying NDE inspections and building trust in their predictions. Therefore, this article aims to demonstrate how UQ can best be achieved for deep learning in the context of crack sizing for inline pipe inspection. A convolutional neural network architecture is used to size surface breaking defects from plane wave imaging (PWI) images with two modern UQ methods: deep ensembles and Monte Carlo dropout. The network is trained using PWI images of surface breaking defects simulated with a hybrid finite element / ray-based model. Successful UQ is judged by calibration and anomaly detection, which refer to whether in-domain model error is proportional to uncertainty and if out of training domain data is assigned high uncertainty. Calibration is tested using simulated and experimental images of surface breaking cracks, while anomaly detection is tested using experimental side-drilled holes and simulated embedded cracks. Monte Carlo dropout demonstrates poor uncertainty quantification with little separation between in and out-of-distribution data and a weak linear fit ( $R=0.84$ ) between experimental root-mean-square-error and uncertainty. Deep ensembles improve upon Monte Carlo dropout in both calibration ( $R=0.95$ ) and anomaly detection. Adding spectral normalization and residual connections to deep ensembles slightly improves calibration ( $R=0.98$ ) and significantly improves the reliability of assigning high uncertainty to out-of-distribution samples.
Computational Fluid Dynamics is one of the most relied upon tools in the design and analysis of components in turbomachines. From the propulsion fan at the inlet, through the compressor and combustion sections, to the turbines at the outlet, CFD is used to perform fluid flow and heat transfer analyses to help designers extract the highest performance out of each component. In some cases, such as the design point performance of the axial compressor, current methods are capable of delivering good predictive accuracy. However, many areas require improved methods to give reliable predictions in order for the relevant design spaces to be further explored with confidence. This paper illustrates recent developments in CFD for turbomachinery which make use of machine learning techniques to augment prediction accuracy, speed up prediction times, analyse and manage uncertainty and reconcile simulations with available data. Such techniques facilitate faster and more robust searches of the design space, with or without the help of optimization methods, and enable innovative designs which keep pace with the demand for improved efficiency and sustainability as well as parts and asset operation cost reduction.
In this work, we present our advances to develop and apply digital twins for drilling fluids and associated wellbore phenomena during drilling operations. A drilling fluid digital twin is a series of interconnected models that incorporate the learning from the past historical data in a wide range of operational settings to determine the fluids properties in real-time operations. Our specific focus is prediction of cuttings bed thickness along the wellbore in hole cleaning and prediction of high-pressure high-temperature (HPHT) rheological properties (in downhole conditions). In both applications, we present procedures to develop accurate digital twins for prediction of drilling fluid properties in real-time drilling operations. In the hole cleaning application, we develop accurate computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models to capture the effects of rotation, eccentricity, and bed height on local fluid velocities above cuttings bed. We then run 55,000 CFD simulations for a wide range of operational settings to generate training data for machine learning. For rheology monitoring, thousands of lab experiment records are collected as training data for machine learning. In this case, the HPHT rheological properties are determined based on rheological measurement in the American Petroleum Institute (API) condition (14.7 psi and 150 F) together with the fluid type and composition data. We compare the results of application of several machine learning algorithms to represent CFD simulations (for hole cleaning) and lab experiments (for monitoring HPHT rheological properties). Rotating cross-validation method is applied to ensure accurate and robust results. In both cases, models from the Gradient Boosting and the Artificial Neural Network algorithms provided the highest accuracy (about 0.95 in terms of R2) for test datasets. With developments presented in this paper, the hole cleaning calculations can be performed in real-time, and the HPHT rheological properties of drilling fluids can be estimated at the rig site avoiding the need to wait for the laboratory experimental results.
Conventional subsea satellite production well design requires the well to be drilled and completed with the drilling rig before flow line and umbilical are installed with other specialized vessels. This causes a time delay between well drilling/completion and production start-up, amounting to several weeks. By installing a well foundation with integrated conductor, manifold, pipeline and umbilical tie-in points, this costly time delay can be reduced, and facilitate instant or accelerated production. The CAN® (Conductor Anchor Node) technology is the structural foundation for the well construction. Smaller marine vessels can be used for installation and recovery. Instead of drilling a 36 in. or 42 in. hole, running the conductor, and cementing operations, a vessel is used to install the well foundation ahead of rig arriving. The technology also offers unparalleled load capacities for satellite production wells, mitigating operational risk by preventing mobilization and handling of spud BHA and conductor handling equipment on the rig, preventing conductor as well as cementing failures, excellent inclination control and many more technical, cost, and environmental benefits. In summary these advantages result in increased efficiency, shorter project execution time, faster time to first oil, reduced operational risk and lower cost ultimately lowering the CO2 footprint (21-44% reduction, or 400-600 mT of CO2) of the top-hole section of any well, development as well as exploration wells.
The whipstock system has successfully improved on operation efficiencies by reducing the total operational time by up to 50%. This is achieved by the system's ability to bypass the upfront cleanup / gauge run, on site assembly, and limitations on running speed. The absence of personnel in the red zone decreased the associated risk during deployment of the system. Even when met with faulty draw works, poor well conditions, and ovality in the casing the system was deployed without issues. Flawless execution of the system was demonstrated by setting the whipstock on the first attempt. The quality of the window was verified with the passing of a rotary steerable drilling assembly. No additional trips were required to ream or polish the casing exit window. The mill to whipstock interface delivers on improved safety, robustness, and efficiency of a casing exit operation. This connection provides a positive impact in the reduction of carbon emissions by effectively decreasing the required time to perform a casing exit. The redundant set anchor prevents additional runs due to its redundant activation feature and its ability to be reset and reoriented if required. This system delivers on improved safety, robustness, and efficiency of a casing exit operation by providing a positive impact in the reduction of carbon emissions. From multiple aspects, decreasing the required time to prepare the well and perform a casing exit.
Although being widely used as an artificial lift method for heavy oil field developments, Electrical Submersible Pump (ESP) system performance in high viscous applications is not fully understood. A miscomprehension of challenges and equipment performance in such conditions might lead to operation inefficiencies and equipment failures. This paper presents results of single-phase and multiphase tests performed by University of Campinas (UNICAMP). It also presents operation data, lessons learnt, and failure examples gathered over 10 years of ESP operation in Peregrino field which is a heavy oil, high viscous oilfield offshore Brazil operated by Equinor. Affinity laws commonly used for ESP simulations don't hold true for high viscosity applications. Hydraulic performance of centrifugal pumps is affected by fluid parameters like viscosity and density; operation parameters such as flow rate and rotational speed; and specific stage design characteristics. To determine degradation in head and efficiency as well as power requirement increase in viscous applications, Equinor performs one-phase high viscosity flow loop test to qualify each stage type prior to deployment in Peregrino field. For the qualification of ESPs, single phase qualification tests are performed using mineral oil with viscosities specifically chosen to cover the viscosity range of the specific field. Each stage type is qualified using a prototype with reduced number of stages due to flow loop limitations. Qualification tests for the Peregrino field confirmed that affinity laws are not accurate for high viscous applications and provided important insights regarding pump performance that are used in equipment specification and system surveillance. The UNICAMP research team has designed and performed multiphase flow tests to evaluate emulsion formation inside centrifugal pump stages and effective viscosity behavior. Phase inversion phenomenon investigation was also included in studies. Studies performed using a prototype stage allowed visualization and evaluation of oil drops dynamics inside the impeller in different rotational speeds. Two phase flow loop tests investigated the shear forces influence in effective viscosity inside pump stages and downstream pump discharge. Phase inversion phenomenon was also a point of great interest during the studies. Data gathered during lab tests was used to evaluate accuracy of mathematical models existing in the literature when a centrifugal pump is added to the system. Hysteresis effect associated to catastrophic phase inversion (CPI) was confirmed and replicated during flow loop tests. Such behavior can be related with operation parameters instabilities and equipment failures noticed in actual application in Peregrino field which are also presented in this paper.
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Houston, Texas, United States