Mud Removal

Halliburton's iCemSM service has the industry's only fully three-dimensional (3D) displacement simulator that can dynamically model the displacement phenomena of wellbore fluids during mud removal and the cement-slurry placement process. The 3D-displacement simulator included with iCem service helps enable operators to evaluate cementing job alternatives and make better, more informed decisions prior to cementing operations. The goal is to help operators reduce well construction incidents/costs, mitigate HSE (health, safety and environmental) risks due to poor mud removal, annular fluid migration, and provide long-term annular-seal reliability throughout the life of the well.

The simulator is formulated on a general curvilinear coordinate mesh system whose boundaries can conform to highly eccentric annuli, the actual wellbore trajectory and/or localized washouts. This enables prediction of required material choices and volumes, potentially reducing the cost of an operation. The associated proprietary visualization tool kit with interactive playback controls enables operators and technical personnel to effectively monitor how the mud, spacer, and cement interfaces move and evolve - before the job is run. These complex mixing interfaces are also characterized by a unique rheological optimizer that dynamically and accurately characterizes the essential properties such as yield stress, viscosity, and shear sensitivity of pumping fluids within the wellbore. The optimizer allows for pre-determination of (1) the "true" top of cement, (2) the fluid intermingling effect on downhole pressures, and (3) the extent of mud channeling.

To enable the simulator, the operator furnishes well depth, borehole diameter, casing diameter, casing standoff, properties of the drilling fluid (mud), spacer fluid, and cement slurry, and the pump rate schedule. No assumptions of these parameters are made, so simulator solutions are not influenced by user tendencies or bias. As a result, the simulations solve the dynamic evolution of fluid concentrations as a function of time, measuring cement, spacer and mud locations as determined by specific attributes of each fluid and of a given wellbore.

Additional features of the 3D displacement simulator in iCem service:

  • Import of caliper log and survey data to generate grid-mesh
  • Non-Newtonian fluid yield stress modeling
  • Dynamic calculation of intermixing zone thickness in both the casing and the annulus
  • Dynamic calculation of mud channel length
  • Displacement efficiency calculation as a function of pumping time, well depth, and well configurations
  • Accounting for impact of fluid turbulence on friction and pressure
iCem® Service
Runs various simulations according to specific wellbore architecture design data provided by the operator. Based on computational fluid dynamics and finite element analysis, the simulations help enable the evaluation and optimization of cement designs to specifically address the operational and long-term parameters of individual wells.
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