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Coretrax drill pipe cleaning ball wipes away 11 days of rig-time cost and risk

Eliminating the need for costly equipment or hazardous manual handling, Coretrax has seen the deployment of its drill pipe cleaning tool, the CX-Ball, bypass more than 2,000 sales within five years, saving more than 11 days of rig-time cost and risk.

Based on an average time saving of eight minutes per ball, this in total has saved 278 hours of rig-time, equivalent to 11.58 days since the product was launched in 2014. In one North Sea campaign, it has been used consistently for the last 74 well abandonments saving 57.6 hours of rig time alone.

“The CX-Ball essentially embodies the concept of marginal gains,” John Fraser, Global Business Development Director with Coretrax, said. “The simplicity of the tool allows easy and quick deployment and reduced time in the “red zone”. While this doesn’t initially suggest big time savings, over multiple applications in a campaign, significant financial, safety and rig-time savings can be achieved.”

After a cement job, foam wiper balls are used to avoid potential residual cement, fluids or debris, setting and building up on the internal diameter (ID) of the pipe. However, competently loading the large foam balls into the restrictive tool joint is challenging and can involve the use of expensive equipment and the safety risks associated with manual handling and machinery.

Unlike other products on the market, the CX-Ball is encased in a soluble material which temporarily restricts the shape of the ball. This allows it to be easily and accurately deployed by a launch tube directly into the drill pipe. When the CX-Ball comes into contact with water, the ball expands and returns to its original shape. The high parting stretch ratio of the foam ball allows it to pass through small restrictions undamaged as it is pumped downhole.

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