Tenaris launches high-torque-resistant connection aimed to boost shale operations
By Eva Vigh, Editorial Coordinator
Tenaris has developed a new threaded and coupled connection, the latest in the TenarisHydril Wedge series, that provides the over-torque performance needed in production strings typically used in horizontal shale wells. The connection’s torque capacity is achieved due to the robustness of the TenarisHydril Wedge thread design, combined with a pin-to-pin backup mechanism.
“The point of the Wedge product is to be able to absorb a higher torque profile than your typical connection,” Alex Gras, Technical Sales Engineer, said at the 2017 Offshore Technology Conference on 1 May in Houston. This is achieved through the synchronized engagement of opposing flanks generated by the dovetail thread, as well as the connection’s lower threads-per-inch profile, he said. Additionally, a pin-to-pin backup mechanism provides extra torque resistance.
The connection decreases rejects and re-makeups, thanks to the Wedge thread’s ability to minimize heat stress and the risk of cross threading, Mr Gras said. A make-up indicator also eliminates the need for a torque-turn chart by displaying visual confirmation of acceptable make-up positions, resulting in quicker installations.
The Wedge XP connection has already been field-tested in US and Argentinian shale plays. In Argentina, the connection was deployed in two drilling with casing operations for YPF. The operations took place on two mature fields – one in a well with a total depth of 2,153 m in the San Jorge Basin in the Santa Cruz province, and one in a well with a TD of 662 m in the Neuquén Basin in the Mendoza province.
In the San Jorge basin, YPF drilled 1,703 m with a running performance of 3/4 min for the complete joint makeup; there were zero re-makeups and rejects. During the operation, the weight on bit (WOB) reached up to 14 tons with a torque at surface that increased up to 14,500 ft-lb.
In the Neuquén basin, the operator drilled 360 m (from 302 to 662 m); the WOB reached up to 6 tons and the Wedge XP connection withstood a torque of 7,500 ft-lb.
In the Niobrara shale in the Rockies region of Colorado, the Wedge XP connection was deployed for Noble Energy. A total of 388 joints of 5 ½-in. 20-lb P110-IC Wedge XP were run in hole as production casing, reaching a total depth of 16,566 ft MD/6,010-ft TVD. The average make-up speed throughout the run was 15 seconds per connection. Despite the anticipated challenges of long laterals and severe doglegs, the connection withstood 28,500 ft-lb of torque during rotation while cementing under a dogleg severity of 11°/100 ft at 6,333-ft MD.