The SPE subsea capping paper, co-authored by Add Energy, Trendsetter Engineering and Shell International Exploration and Production has gained significant exposure and interest since it was presented at SPE events in Dubai and Perth. Not only has it been sited by the Journal of Petroleum Technology (JPT) but Add Energy's Senior Vice President for Well Control and Blowout Support, Ray Tommy Oskarsen, has also been invited to deliver the paper at the upcoming SPE Bergen Conference in April 2017.
The paper describes a step-by-step planning process for developing a subsea capping plan. For many deepwater operators a subsea capping plan is an internal requirement, and in some regions it is also part of regulatory requirements. Since Macondo, many industry publications have discussed the equipment, connections, and interfaces needed for capping and containing a blowing subsea well, but they give little insight into developing a well-specific subsea-capping contingency plan.
The planning process described in the presentation, which has been used successfully on multiple projects and source-control drills, involves assessing the feasibility of deploying a capping stack from a floating vessel, the weight and stability of the capping stack to overcome the force of the blowout jet, and dynamic flow simulations of closing the capping stack outlets without loss of well integrity. This process not only assesses the feasibility, complexity, and risk exposure of the capping operation, but may also justify further planning, studies, or expenditure.
Click here to read the paper.