Experimental characterization of some water soluble polymers used in drilling and completion fluids

Gürbüz, Berkay
Properly preparing the drilling fluid is an essential part of any successful drilling operation, especially in complex operations like deviated and horizontal drilling. Understanding the flow behavior of the polymers used in the drilling fluids under different conditions takes a key part in this preparation. In this study, shear rheology of some traditionally used water soluble polymers in drilling and completion fluids; namely PAC (polyanionic cellulose) and xanthan gum, were investigated experimentally. Instead of an oilfield standard Fann Model 35 Viscometer, an Ofite Model 900 Viscometer was used because of its capability to measure at ultra-low shear rates. Effects of the concentration of the polymer, time of shear applied, test temperature and effects of aging were examined. Rheological measurements were conducted between the shear rate ranges of 0.01 to 1000s-1 with concentrations changing from 0.25 to 1.5 grams of polymer per 350 milliliters of water (equivalent to 0.25 to 1.5 lb/bbl). Rheograms were constructed to identify the effect the polymers in question have on the flow characteristics of the drilling fluid. An appropriate constitutive model was used to define the flow behavior of the polymer in question mathematically. It was observed from the constructed rheograms that increase in polymer concentration results in consistent increase of apparent viscosity. Amount of time of shear does not affect the selected polymers if they are dynamically aged at least for two hours. Also as expected increasing temperature of the sample lowers the apparent viscosity considerably.


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Citation Formats
B. Gürbüz, “Experimental characterization of some water soluble polymers used in drilling and completion fluids,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2012.