Hydraulic Fracturing Techbook 2018

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50 | August 2018 | HYDRAULIC FRACTURING: TECHNOLOGY said. "There is a lot that has to be achieved, but the progress made in other industries, the computing industry, wireless data transfer technology are com- ing together to create a scenario for the industry to really take advantage of these various components that are going to contribute to automation. There is a lot of proof of concept stuff out there, and I think that where the data are available some are making some early progress. I'm not seeing anything that is effectively pulling it all together. I think the defini- tion of automation is also important here. We see that customers are interested, from the fracturing services industry, in cost-competitive solutions that deliver appropriate returns. What do the overall eco- nomics look like and is the industry able to manage that appropriately?" Halliburton continues to mature technologies around nanomaterials to try to extract as much hydro- carbons as possible, in addition to new modeling techniques and new capability to give the contractor a better understanding of completions impact on overall well productivity. "Industry has gotten pretty comfortable with diverter type methodologies," Gale noted. "We antici- pate seeing that to continue to evolve. The expectation is, if anything, that the industry will continue to be one of open-mindedness around technology and experimenting with new things." Halliburton will be launching a handful of differ- ent technologies through the remainder of the year, some around its MicroScout Plus technology. The company also continues to evolve its legacy Access Frac approach. "Having an effective kit of equipment is something we think is going to differentiate us moving forward," Gale said. Sliding sleeve versus plug-and-perf Resolution to the sliding sleeve versus plug-and-perf (PNP) completions debate may still be a moving tar- get given both operator preference and individual well anatomy. Sliding sleeve, the openhole and, in theory, quicker of the two methods gained traction with operators for its elimination of nonproductive time (NPT) due to the absence of the need to trip in and out of the well and mill plugs. PNP, which is conducted in cased wells, has matured to a state of preference for many as new methods and tech- nologies emerge. Some new PNP have eschewed the use of explosives, while others can employ dissolv- able plugs that eliminate the need for milling. Both Schlumberger and Halliburton have such technol- ogy in their respective toolboxes. "Primarily in U.S. land, we see plug-and-perf taking hold," Gale said. "We see nothing that is pressing that is going to significantly change that—call it mar- ket share or percent of jobs that are done with plug and perf. That continues to be the case. A lot of our technology development in and around that space is related to plug-and-perf. Our Illusion plug technol- ogy is something that continues to gain traction in the marketplace, and drives and facilitates a much more efficient operation. There are always going to be operators and reservoirs that are going to be more attuned with sliding sleeve, but again we continue to see that as a minority portion into the future." For Schlumberger, it's the Infinity dissolvable PNP system, which uses degradable fracturing balls and seats instead of plugs to isolate zones during stim- ulation. The system is suitable for cemented, unce- mented, vertical, deviated or horizontal applications in shale, sandstone and other lithologies, according to the contractor. The patented aluminum-based material degrades completely within hours or days, ensuring that production reaches its full potential. No additives are required. Fullbore access also increases the options available for post-fracturing evaluation and future production intervention. Pulling cost from the equation Maintenance and logistics remain two key drivers of cost when it comes to hydraulic fracturing. The number of moving parts in concert with increased truck activity and other equipment on the roads makes for a heightened level of potential failure points throughout any particular job. Industry con- tinues to work to simplify the maintenance process as well as lower to the number of water and/or sand handling vehicles on the roads—no small feat given the increased levels of each required for today's more robust frack jobs. "85% of the total cost of ownership of tools and equipment accumulates from the moment they are deployed until the day they are retired," said Jose Borges, technology life-cycle management manager, OneStim, Schlumberger. "Therefore, improving the management of assets throughout their life cycle is a primary concern for Schlumberger and our customers." The transformation of Schlumberger's main- tenance has achieved significant reliability and efficiency improvements through the adoption of digital technologies and analytics, centralized asset planning and the latest advances in prognostic health management for optimizing the maintenance of our pumps.

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