New Environmentally Friendly Dispersants for High Temperature Invert-Emulsion Drilling Fluids Weighted by Manganese Tetraoxide
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This thesis provides a detailed evaluation of different environmentally friendly dispersants in invert-emulsion drilling fluids that can be used to drill wells under difficult conditions such as HPHT. The drilling fluid is weighted by manganese tetraoxide (Mn3O4) particles, which have a specific gravity of 4.8 and a mean particle diameter of ca1 micrometers. Manganese tetraoxide has different wetting properties and surface chemistry than other weighting agents. Hence, there is a need to find dispersants for manganese tetraoxide that give reduced sag, reduced rheology, and low fluid-loss at HPHT conditions. This is particularly important for deep wells with narrow operating windows between pore-pressure and fracture pressure gradients. The stricter global environmental regulations mandated the dispersants to be environmentally friendly, e.g. within OCNS group D or E. First, oil compatibility tests and particle settling time experiments were conducted on 31 dispersants. From the experiments, we identified 3 oil-compatible dispersants that gave the longest settling time in base oil and belonged to OCNS group D. We investigated the effectiveness of selected chemicals in dispersing manganese tetraoxide at HPHT conditions. 1.95 and 2.4 S.G. drilling fluid samples were first prepared and tested without any contaminant and then in the presence of rev dust and cement as contaminants. Drilling fluid samples were statically aged at 400 degrees F and 500 psi for 16 hours. Sag and rheological measurements were taken before and after aging to determine the effect of HPHT conditions on fluid properties. Then, HPHT dynamic filtration tests were done at 500 psi differential pressure and 300 degrees F to determine HPHT dynamic fluid-loss. We have found that one of the dispersants (nonionic) gives low rheology and reduced sag before and after static aging. It also gives the lowest fluid-loss of the selected dispersants. For 2.4 S.G. fluid without contaminants, 10-minute gel strength was reduced from 50 to 32 lb/100 ft^2, plastic viscosity from 37 to 25 cp, sag from 0.249 to 0.135 lbm/gal, and fluid-loss was reduced from 44.4 to 39.6 cm^3 with the addition of dispersant. This dispersant prevents agglomeration of particles, thereby reducing fluid rheology, sag, and fluid-loss.
Rehman, Abdul (2011). New Environmentally Friendly Dispersants for High Temperature Invert-Emulsion Drilling Fluids Weighted by Manganese Tetraoxide. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from