The art of data science: Industry hones in on reliability, ease of use

ARTICLE: Published on Drilling Contractor Magazine, July 13, 2022

Recent efforts touch on standardization, aggregation from disparate sources, automated processing and customizable delivery to users.


Stephen Whitfield, Associate Editor

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Mechanical Specific Energy: Standardizing names and equations

SPE PAPER: Published on Pason Systems, May 2, 2022

This paper recommends standardized names and equations for the two most common uses of Mechanical Specific Energy (MSE) concepts: "Total MSE" and "Downhole MSE". These names and their equations should be used uniformly in all applications, including electronic drilling recorder (EDR) pick lists, rig site surveillance, engineering surveillance, data analytics, research, and technical publications.

Mechanical Specific Energy, used as a metric for drilling efficiency, is a mathematical calculation of the energy used per volume of rock drilled. The Downhole MSE equation calculates the efficiency of the bit alone, while the Total MSE equation includes both the bit and drill string. Those who use MSE in surveillance or analytics know the negative effects created by the lack of standardization over the years; it is certainly not a new problem.

The lack of standardized nomenclature has resulted in the use of the same name for different equations, or different names are given two equations that are identical. This affects the ability of drill teams to engage vendors in redesign of performance limitations or to communicate new operational practices between teams or rigs. In addition, this standard corrects a mathematical error that is common in calculating the Total MSE.

The concern with the inconsistencies has increased as MSE has become a key element in many automated optimization schemes. Inconsistencies or uncertainties in the basis of MSE values calculated in real time or shared in large data sets will affect the industry's ability to develop useful analytics or to automate rig control platforms and data-driven decisions.

This paper also includes a discussion of the MSE measurement errors and their effect on calculated values, which is of particular interest to controls engineers and those involved in data analytics. Examples are provided to illustrate how the two different MSE values are used in field operations. Also, a substantial reference list of current and potential future uses of MSE is included to encourage better MSE-based practices to potentially lead to the development of new uses in the future, including automation.

This ad hoc MSE Standardization Committee is a volunteer group with representation from operators, rig contractors, service companies, and data acquisition vendors. The guidance given reflects their shared experience in utilizing MSE in surveillance and analytics, and the recommended equations are technically correct. 


Fred Dupriest, Texas A&M University; Paul Pastusek, ExxonMobil Upstream Integrated Solutions Company; Stephen Lai and Bob Best, Pason Systems; Michael Behounek, Apache Corporation; Bryan Cook, National Oilwell Varco; Wendell Basarath, Contractor; Chris Cutts, K&M Technology Group; Jared Collins, Occidental; Mohammadreza Kamyab, Corva; Dennis Moore, Marathon Oil Ret; Eric Pulpan, Marathon Oil; Austin Jeske and JJ Wilson, Pioneer Natural Resources; Jamie Sheets, Ensign Energy

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August 16, 2021

DAS™ best practices

STORY: Published August 16, 2021

What is Pason DAS™?

DAS™ uses a combination of patented algorithms that enable real-time decision-making to increase drilling speeds, save money on downhole equipment repairs, and produce a higher quality wellbore. The system continually evaluates bit-to-rock interaction using a combination of data including rate of penetration (ROP) and mechanical specific energy (MSE). This results in: Faster drilling, reduced number of trips, and improved wellbore quality.

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White Paper: Record breaking optimization results in Oman

PDF: Published on Pason, July 13, 2021

Halliburton Project Management’s innovative approach to drilling optimization resulted in a new field record in Oman, in part by utilizing Pason System’s automation solutions, realtime drilling optimization, and high-quality data for enhancing well construction rates.

As a global leader in the management and delivery of lump-sum turnkey (LSTK) projects, the Halliburton Project Management (HPM) team deploys a suite of technologies, engineering services, and industry expertise to deliver wells safely and efficiently. LSTK projects are often outsourced to vertically integrated service companies due to the complexity or size of the drilling program, and Halliburton has been awarded several projects worldwide based on their proven record of meeting or exceeding customer’s expectations.

In Oman, HPM was presented with challenging targets from the NOC, and HPM responded with a structured, targeted strategy for success. Over the first 12 months, HPM’s primary focus was on deploying the proper personnel and services, identifying challenges specific to the drilling field, and reliably identifying and tracking invisible lost time (ILT) and non-productive time (NPT) to better control and reduce off-bottom time. The second phase was to explore improvements in on-bottom performance and Rate of Penetration (ROP) using new technologies and collaborations with other industry leading specialists.

This paper describes the challenges and step-by-step chronology of solutions deployed to achieve continuous performance improvement and merits of integration amongst Halliburton and Pason for maximizing drilling performance. By effectively focusing on process execution, the project team was able to achieve field records for best composite time for oil-producing wells and for water-injector wells.

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Well Dashboard: Everything our customers need, nothing they don’t

STORY: Published June 11, 2021

At Pason, we're continually pushing out new features and software for our customers to ensure the best service and experience possible. Therefore, we are incredibly proud of our Well Dashboard, an upgrade to our existing Well Page that allows our customers to configure their features in a way that works for them.

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Payroll Fetch: A user-friendly, simple-to-use app that delivers the best-quality data

STORY: Published December 9, 2020

Imagine an app where drilling contractors can schedule recurring tasks that will download payroll reports straight from our Pason DataHub, all while generating in a CSV format tailored to their unique payroll system.

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Pason’s DAS™ dedicated to faster drilling, saving costs

STORY: Published October 7, 2020

Faster drilling. Reduced number of trips. Improved wellbore stability.

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Method and System for Performing Automated Drilling of a Wellbore

PATENT: Published on United States Patent, September 8, 2020

Methods, systems, and techniques for performing automated drilling of a wellbore. The wellbore is drilled in response to a first drilling parameter target (such as weight on bit) that includes a first drilling parameter offset modified by a first drilling parameter perturbation signal. A first drilling performance metric (such as rate of penetration) is measured and is indicative of a response of the drilling to the first drilling parameter target. An output of a first objective function is determined using the measured first drilling performance metric. A first correlation between the output of the first objective function and the first drilling parameter perturbation signal, and an integral of the first correlation, are determined. The first drilling parameter target is updated using the integral modified by the first drilling parameter perturbation signal. The wellbore is drilled in response to the updated first drilling parameter target.


Ng, Choon-Sun James (Calgary, CA)

Khromov, Sergey (Calgary, CA)

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