Following an initial agreement between the two companies in 2018, Equinor and Ardyne, a specialist downhole technology and services company for reducing rig time on well abandonment, slot recovery, workover, exploration and P&A operations have agreed a second joint industry project (JIP) to develop a unique well decommissioning technology to reduce the economic and environmental impacts of slot recovery and well decommissioning operations.
The UK£1mn project has been jointly funded by Equinor and Ardyne. Ardyne will manage all engineering, project management and onsite rig qualification testing before deployment for field trials.
TITAN RS, which will be ready for commercialisation in 12 months, combines Ardyne’s field proven bottom hole assembly (BHA) systems with the new resonance tool to aid casing recovery by using resonance to reduce the pulling force required to free stuck casing. Successful trial wells have been completed recovering casing encased in settled solids.
The system uses the novel and highly effective application of resonance or vibration technology to allow longer sections to be pulled more quickly from settled material in the well. Ardyne has proved resonance to be highly effective in loosening settled material surrounding the casing, with an approximate 30% reduction in pull force required. The vibrations remain isolated downhole and are not transferred to the rig floor.
Compared to conventional rig systems, TITAN RS can provide up to 40% time efficiency savings for well abandonment, decommissioning and brownfield slot recovery projects through fewer runs and time downhole, with a resultant reduction in carbon emissions due to less rig time. The additional functionality means well clean up can be achieved as part of the recovery process without the need for additional trips in the well.
Ardyne has calculated that, when considering a single well scenario, an average rig time saving of more than 78 hours can be achieved. This would equal 136 tonnes of CO2 avoided, 156.8 MW hours of electricity and 13,807 gallons of diesel.
Alan Fairweather, CEO of Ardyne, commented, “The process is proven. The ability to cut days off existing processes through the innovative use of resonance is compelling at a time when the industry is seeking to maximise efficiencies at every opportunity. The environmental benefits of reduced carbon emissions through less time required on site are clear.”
“Equinor has already identified wells offshore Norway for the commercial deployment of TITAN RS next year. We look forward to providing them with a unique and industry-leading method to reduce operational costs and carbon emissions.”
Pål V. Hemmingsen, Task Leader Low-cost P&A Equinor, added, “The benefits of TITAN RS match our ambitions to shape the future of energy. We have been impressed with Ardyne’s unique application of resonance as a force for good in reducing project time and carbon output associated with P&A and slot recovery operations. We look forward to full commercialisation of the system from this latest JIP with the company.”