There are a lot of precautions companies must take when it comes to drilling for oil or gas. Well management involves the monitoring and reduction of harmful effects associated with oil drilling rigs, such as the release of formation fluid into the atmosphere. Formation fluids are gases or liquids that naturally occur in the earth. Natural gas and crude oil are examples of formation fluids.
Why is Well Management Necessary?
One of the biggest goals of well management is to prevent formation fluid from entering into the wellbore. The wellbore is a hole drilled for the purpose of exploring or unearthing natural resources such as gas, oil, or water.
When formation fluid enters into the wellbore, this is known as a kick. A kick occurs when there is not enough pressure in the column of drilling fluid to overcome the pressure of the fluids being exerted by the formation that is being drilled. If a kick cannot be controlled, a blowout can occur. A blowout causes oil or gas to gush uncontrollably out of the well. During a blowout, an accidental spark can ignite the blowout, causing a catastrophic fire.
Blowouts commonly occur when the right equipment isn’t properly deployed, rig crews are poorly trained, or just from using poor practices. Well management is designed to prevent the occurrence of kicks or to prevent blowouts in the event that a kick does occur.
Well Management Software
Well management software is often used to collect and analyze data related to the drilling process such as mud properties, bit tally, and drilling depth per day. Software is also used to create wellbore schematics in order to better plan the well and to get a more accurate picture of the well once it is completed. By having a concise image of the wellbore, companies are able to make more sound judgments about the well’s future.