transition technologies

Expandable steel patch recognized as transition technology

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United Nations SDG Goals versus Saltel Patch attributes.

Casing patch attributes vs. UN goals

SLB recognized Saltel casing patch as a transition technology, as its benefits to the environment are systematic, regardless of the application or the alternative technology. We present two different scenarios here. They’re representative of the two main applications of Saltel patch worldwide:

  • The enhancement of the production.
  • The casing integrity restoration of unconventional wells.

The selected sustainability attributes for the quantification exercise are in the field of:

  • Travel for personnel and equipment mobilization
  • Embodied carbon footprint
  • Waste reduction

We have estimated their respective environmental impact from these two main applications, depending on the application and calculating the technology’s annual implications.

Quantification framework

Expandable steel casing patch principle

Saltel patch is a transition technology

Saltel casing patch is a permanent remedial solution for oil, gas, and geothermal wells, water bores, and all types of pipelines. Unwanted perforations, casing leaks, and damaged completion equipment require a repair method that is resistant to harsh environments, reliable in different geometries, and compatible with the expected operating conditions to ensure the well integrity and satisfactory production levels. Saltel casing patch effectively meets all these downhole oilfield challenges.

Operational applicability

Once a well has reached its economic limit and, after various workovers extending its life, it goes through P&A. Tough times often reveal the most challenging to our creativity. It is not different for our customers, who are continuously looking for ways to optimize resources while minimizing the environmental impact of their operations. Treating produced water represents to our customers a significant weight on their operational costs, which is why some customers are drilling wells to dispose of the high volumes of produced water.

After reviewing the reservoir properties of the wells ready for abandonment, you might identify some suitable candidates as possible disposal wells. However, the zones where the water must dispose of your water are different from those currently open (once producers). Therefore, there is a need for a safe and reliable technology to isolate those zones. Saltel casing patch technology can safely and reliably isolate old perforations while injecting water into new perforations at high flow rates.

Saltel patch is a transition technology

You can find various casing patch offerings in each geomarket, including international and local services companies. Therefore, we can change the focus. Instead of just offering a solution, Saltel Industries brings a differentiated solution from other technologies with an absolute value proposition. The reliability is critical to the client so that the conversion from producer to injector well can comply with all the regulatory and technical requirements while keeping financial efficiency.

Quantifying rig time savings

The technology traditionally deployed for operations is the cement squeeze. When comparing the duration of a squeeze operation to the duration of installing a casing patch, the result is uncontestable. The critical fuel consumption for deploying both solutions on a workover rig makes the difference. This duration is a simple parameter, easy to measure, and easily accessible for many interventions.

On the other hand, when deployed in the same application, the casing patch consumes one packer element per well. Each part weighs about 80kg, and the savings in terms of waste generation are substantial, at ~1,260 kilograms per well.

Waste reduction

The second attribute of Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) calculation is waste reduction. Indeed, there is a systematic excess of cement production over what is necessary for injection. The cement circulating back to the surface or not injected is considered an ultimate waste. Operators could crush and use this cement for gravel. However, it ends up generally disposed of in landfills.

On the other hand, the casing patch has limited consumables. The central part that is aging along the expansion process is the inflatable packer element. This component transmits the high pressure sent from the surface to the internal diameter of the patch. This packer element is high-performance, able to reach pressures close to 10,000psi, at 300F temperature, and for an extended number of inflation cycles and bleed off.

Nevertheless, once the packer element reaches the end of its lifecycle, you cannot reuse it. The disposable element is then cut into three parts. The extremities are recyclable as the main components of carbon steel; the central part, an elastomer matrix composite, generally goes to incinerators or landfills.

The waste attribute calculates the quantity of non-recyclable material generated from cement squeeze or casing patch operations.

Fuel and emissions savings

For most of the casing patch interventions in North America, the wells are new Unconventionals. The purpose of the patch is to restore the casing integrity after failure to sustain a regulatory pressure test.

The casing patch then ensures that the client can launch the stimulation operations. The whole well is therefore salvaged, avoiding costly P&A or side-tracking operations. For this exercise, the carbon footprint of drilling a well is considered. The CO2e savings will be the difference between drilling a horizontal well and the necessary CO2e required to deploy a casing patch.

What are transition technologies?

Drive high performance sustainably: The SLB Transition Technologies portfolio helps oil and gas companies address sustainability challenges and opportunities, backed by science-based impact quantification. Our growing portfolio of products and technologies is the best in the industry and will help you sustain high performance, no matter where you are in the hydrocarbon life cycle. Fossil fuels have been the primary energy source for the last century. Nevertheless, our current approach to producing and consuming fossil fuels is no longer sustainable for our planet. Indeed, average temperatures and CO2e emissions continue to grow. The Paris Agreement showed that the transition to a decarbonized economy is necessary, and all industries, including oil and gas, need to accelerate this transition.

SLB Transition Technologies help oil and gas companies transition to emerging energy solutions. These technologies not only reduce environmental footprints but also improve business results.

SLB has developed a set of attributes to quantify its Transition Technologies, mapped to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, illustrating its support for achieving the goals and aligning with customers on their sustainability objectives. Read more about our science-based approach.

Transition technologies enable the customers to deliver sustainable solutions for discovery, wells, and production.

With growing energy demand and global targets for net-zero emissions, we need to act now. It includes reducing the environmental impact of oil and gas operations today. Our Transition Technologies enable measurable environmental-impact reductions across the oil and gas value chain. To achieve this, our team of engineers worked to quantify and prove the impact of these technologies. So we created a science-based methodology with eight attributes that support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

  1. Reduce emissions from operations
  2. Promote high efficiency and reduce energy consumption
  3. Electrify infrastructure, minimize footprint, and enable access to renewable power
  4. Measure, monitor, and assess operations to mitigate the impact
  5. Incorporate cleaner chemicals and reduce the use of hazardous materials
  6. Minimize pollution and promote good water stewardship
  7. Minimize waste during operations
  8. Reduce the physical size of projects

Transition Technologies are supported by explicit impact calculations linked to these attributes, enabling informed actions. Together, we can decarbonize oil and gas operations and accelerate our path to net-zero emissions. Let’s get started.