PARTNERSHIP

Exel Composites partners with Ziebel on oil well sensor

DSC has developed fiber optic-embedded carbon composite rod for the Norwegian company

Exel Composites company Diversified Structural Composites (DSC) has developed fiber optic-embedded carbon composite rod for Norwegian company Ziebel’sinnovative well intervention system.

DSC’s expertise in carbon fiber pultrusion enabled the precision manufacture of the 15 mm diameter rod with fiber optic core, which functions as a sensor, gathering valuable real-time insight on well behaviour unattainable using conventional methods.

Ziebel was founded in 2006 with the vision to become a significant contributor to increased oil recovery factors through innovative technology and solutions. In order to make informed decisions, oil drilling and completions teams need detailed information on fluid flow in and around the borehole during production or injection. Such data is usually collected using production logging tools, but this method is operationally challenging and provides limited, time- and location-specific information. Ziebel’s proprietary technology, the distributed fiber optic (DFO)-based Z-System®, is free of many of the constraints that limit conventional well logging effectiveness, offering improved understanding of well and reservoir behaviour.

At the heart of Ziebel’s Z-System is the DSC-manufactured 6.2 km long, 15 mm diameter carbon fiber rod (the Z-Rod®), which delivers multiple fiber optic cables securely into the hostile downhole environment. Typically, the rod is deployed into a producing or injecting well for 48 hours where the fiber optic sensors measure temperature and acoustic vibrations along its length. This enables a variety of applications – including flow allocation, fluid movement visualization, leak detection and stimulation fluid monitoring – which are extremely valuable for optimal well and reservoir management.

This composite-based sensing system offers further advantages. The carbon rod enables horizontal well access, since the lightweight, stiff composite rod can be 'pushed' from the surface into the horizontal sections frequently employed in today’s wells, which is not possible with conventional tools run on a wireline unless an electrical well tractor is employed.. In addition, the small-diameter carbon rod can access wells with restricted internal diameters and difficult geometry where other tools will not pass, it has minimal choking effect on the well, and unlike metals, it is inert to the majority of hazardous and corrosive substances found in the downhole environment.

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Filed: Pultrusion
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