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How to design the oil casing?
- May 31, 2018 -

How to design the oil casing?

In the planning stages of a well, a drilling engineer, usually with input from geologists and others, will pick strategic depths at which the hole will need to be cased in order for drilling to reach the desired total depth. This decision is often based on subsurface data such as formation pressures, strengths, and makeup, and is balanced against the cost objectives and desired drilling strategy.

With the casing set depths determined, hole sizes and casing sizes must follow. The hole drilled for each casing string must be large enough to easily fit the casing inside it, allowing room for cement between the outside of the casing and the hole. Also, the inside diameter of the first casing string must be large enough to fit the second bit that will continue drilling. Thus, each casing string will have a subsequently smaller diameter.

The inside diameter of the final casing string (or penultimate one in some instances of a liner completion) must accommodate the production tubing and associated hardware such as packers, gas lift mandrels and subsurface safety valves.

Casing design for each size is done by calculating the worst conditions that may be faced during drilling and production. Mechanical properties of designed pipes such as collapse resistance, burst pressure, and axial tensile strength must be sufficient for the worst conditions.

Casing strings are supported by casing hangers that are set in the wellhead, which later will be topped with the Christmas tree. The wellhead usually is installed on top of the first casing string after it has been cemented in place.


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