Evaluation of Fe2O3 Nanoparticles for Optimum Water Based Mud Performance for Moderate Temperature and Pressure

Kingdom K. Dune, Clifford T. Dexterity, Fidelis O. Wopara


The usefulness of Fe2O3 nanoparticles for moderate temperature/high pressure (MT/HP) well production using water and oil based drilling mud was explored. To achieve success in drilling MT/HP wells, the mud rheological properties must be appropriate enough to withstand troublesome zones. For these to be achieved, it is necessary that proper mixture of mud additives is carried out. In this research, 20nm Fe2O3 (nanoparticle) of different volume in 1lbbl that resulted to 35g/bbl, 70g/bbl, 105g/bbl and 140g/bbl (mass concentrations) were added to a formulated fresh water based mud for application in moderate temperature, high pressure drilling operations. The result shows that an increase in temperature from 800F to 1900F increased the mud density from 9.0ppg to 9.29ppg and decreased the plastic viscosity from 20cp to 16cp. Consequently, the yield point and gel strength decreased from 32lb/100ft2 to 15lb/100ft2and 14lb/100ft2 to 5lb/100ft2, it reduced the fluid loss from 7.2mls to 3.2mls at 100psi and decreased the mud filter cake thickness from 1.39mm to 0.32mm for the nano-water based mud. All these were achieved for mass concentrations of 0g/bbl to 140g/bbl which increased the mud density, the plastic viscosity and gel strength, while the fluid loss capacity, yield point and mud filter cake thickness decreased with increasing mass concentrations of the nano-water based mud.The development of an analytical model was implored to evaluate plastic viscosity, yield point, gel strength and mud filter cake thickness at any temperature given and mass concentrations for the nano-water based muds after fitting 110 data points from the experimental data gotten. The model generated can be an economic tool for the prediction of plastic viscosity, yield point, gel strength and mud filter cake thickness for a wide range of temperature and pressure conditions and can aid the oil and gas industry on decision making to withstand troublesome zones.

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