Baker Hughes BHAs Drilled More Than 19,000 ft of Salt in a Single Well, Reduced Drilling Time by More Than 14 Days

Location: Walker Ridge, Gulf of Mexico

An operator in the Gulf of Mexico planned to drill a vertical well to a total depth (TD) of more than 31,000 ft with a formation pressure approaching 25,000 psi. The deepwater well included more than 19,000 ft of salt, with multiple inclusions and sutures throughout the salt body.

On offset wells in the area, the operator had encountered the typical problems with drilling salt. These included excessive torque, vibration, tool/drill string damage and difficulties with directional control. Due to the planned TD for this well, minimizing casing wear and eliminating tool failures were high priorities.

Baker Hughes provided the drilling systems, drill bits, and reamers for this well. Taking a total systems approach when designing the drilling bottomhole assemblies (BHAs), it chose the AutoTrak™ G3 rotary steerable system, which utilizes continuous proportional steering, to keep the well vertical and to minimize tortuosity. The high weight and torque ratings for the AuoTrak steering unit also enabled a wide range of drilling parameters to achieve the desired rate of penetration (ROP). The Kymera™ hybrid drill bits were used because of their proven performance in drilling intervals with various formation types.

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AutoTrak G3 Rotary Steerable System

Our rotary steerable drilling system allows you to navigate precisely into the target using superior directional control in the most challenging well profiles.

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