The sub-sea environment is harsh and unforgiving. Equipment must be designed to withstand abrasive materials, high pressures and high temperatures at great distances from the control room. Failure can result not only in lost revenue, but may also damage a formation resulting in even greater costs if wells need to be re-drilled or the environment is damaged. Unfortunately recreating these environments in the lab is difficult and gaining controlled experimental data even more so.
Computer aided engineering tools that are traditionally used to reduce the design cycle can also mimic the harsh environments encountered. As a result equipment can be modeled using ANSYS CFD and ANSYS Mechanical software, reducing the need for testing, but also increasing the likelihood of the best design being deployed.
In addition to looking at the equipment, it is also possible to model the rock formation itself. Lumped parameter models with correction factors are already available, but ANSYS CFD can be employed to get a more detailed assessment of the formation flow, and the effect (beneficial or otherwise) of well perforations and fracture.
This presentation is one of a series covering the problems faced by the Oil & Gas industry and where (and how) the ANSYS suite of tools can be applied to solve these. This presentation will focus on drill bits, and look at the newer areas of well and reservoir modeling.