Rheological Characterization of Shale – Mud Interactions
In a bid to identify a best drilling fluid for a problematic oil field in the Niger Delta region, rheological tests were carried out on three mud samples; BW1, BW3 and BW4. The results affirm that the load bearing capacity of XP-07 formulated as BW3 and BW4 in this investigation is excellent and fall within the same range or even better than those of REF Mud with a more than 90% drilling success history in Niger Delta. The rheological changes of XP-07 with increase in temperature and “assimilated” microscopic shale particles are very negligible and smaller than those of REF mud. XP-07 has been strongly recommended for all drilling operations in the problematic field. It has been re-emphasised as part of our recommendations that new guidelines for the close monitoring of drilling fluids supplied by mud companies and those actually used in the field (during drilling) be put in place.
Key words: Shale – mud interactions; Rheological characterization; Niger delta
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