Drilling Optimisation

BE3 Indexing Model Application – UK SNS Development Project.


What we set out to achieve

Aurora was tasked with developing a drilling optimisation plan to cover each and every section of the well (primary and contingency options) to meet the needs of the customer, on what would be its 1st HPHT drilled on the UK continental shelf.

The drilling optimisation plan needed to include a geological-based road map for the drilling system runs, ring-fenced equipment listings, and bespoke products for inclusion into the drilling system to reduce the negative effects of lateral and torsional vibration.


What we did

After clearly establishing the operator’s objectives, the Aurora team conducted its pre-drill analysis, involving a detailed review of the available data set from the customer and its own information from the METIS knowledge bank. This analysis revealed that increased drilling system life (reduced round trips) and ROP improvements (use of new drill bit technology) could be delivered to the drilling operation:

  • Ensure drilling plan incorporated geological based flow chart for drilling system runs to ensure trips were made in the correct place.
  • Draw up equipment hit list enabling operator to ring-fence application-specific equipment in the pre-well phase.
  • Use specific PDC cutting structure layouts for the 1st run in the 12 ¼” hole section.
  • Introduction of string stabilisers with enhanced protection to delay the onset of lateral & torsional vibrations on this critical HPHT exploration well.
  • Individual drill bit application summary sheets and drilling guidelines are incorporated into the operator’s drilling programme.


Driving improved performance

The Aurora drilling optimisation plan helped the operator deliver a best-in-class performance record for a UK CNS HPHT well.

5xdrilling systems only were used to drill to 15500ft MD on the HPHT well.
8800ftwas the highlight of the completion of the 12 ¼” section using just 2x drilling systems.
70ft/daybetter than the previous record when the 345ft/day was achieved.

All project goals and well objectives were met and overall drilling performance was outstanding.

Best in class drilling performance, when compared with equivalent wells drilled in the CNS utilising a jack-up drilling rig was delivered.