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BiSN collaborates with Sasol Mozambique on future rigless plug and abandonment operations

Published by , Deputy Editor
Oilfield Technology,

BiSN has partnered with major operator Sasol in Mozambique to qualify the effectiveness of Wel-lok™ technology for future rigless plug and abandonment and intervention operations. The collaboration aimed to establish the viability of using BiSN alloy via perforations to achieve rock-to-rock sealing and improve abandonment integrity.

“Sasol believed that BiSN alloy is a material which is far less prone to contamination vs traditional cement and can affect a far higher sealing capability within a shorter column height due to its expansion characteristics upon cooling,” said Sandy Ferrari, Well Engineering Consultant at Sasol. “Upon setting, it far exceeded our expectations and we will continue to use BiSN technology in Sasol campaigns.”

Sasol Mozambique faced the challenge of establishing a 62 m rock-to-rock seal in thin cap rocks, making it challenging to ensure complete sealing using traditional cement. To overcome this challenge, Sasol elected to work with BiSN and a major service provider to deploy BiSN alloy via perforations in 9-5/8 in. casing. The objective was to isolate formation activity from a gas-bearing silt layer and create a suitable regional seal within a 10 m thick shale interval.

The operation began with the displacement of the 9-5/8 in. casing to solids-free brine, followed by casing scraping and perforating gun run on wireline. A cast iron bridge plug was set to provide a mechanical base for the molten alloy, and a 33 ft Wel-lok plug was deployed and activated via a timer and hydrostatic switch. The alloy expanded, forming an effective 360º circumferential bismuth barrier within the annulus.

“It’s always exciting for BiSN to work with an operator in a new country and see the ever-growing adoption of Wel-lok technology across the industry,” said Paul Carragher, CEO and Founder of BiSN. “The forward-thinking team at Sasol, together with our other partners, made this a smooth and successful operation and we are proud to be working with them on this important initiative in Mozambique.”

Added benefits in the long term

The qualification in Mozambique of bismuth alloy for deployment via perforations offers numerous benefits for abandonment integrity and operational efficiency. These benefits include improved long-term abandonment integrity, reduced carbon footprint, reduced operational exposure, and cost savings. The use of BiSN alloy eliminates the need for section milling, reduces rig time, and enables rigless abandonment in the future. It also allows for the abandonment of wells with integrity issues and provides a solution for re-entering wells with gas trapped under shallow barriers.

“A key to success was the excellent collaboration between BiSN and Sasol, from ordering the tools to the successful bismuth alloy installation,” added Klisthenis Dimitriadis, Well Engineering Manager, Sasol. “The openness in communication and transparency on both sides was vital to the deployment’s success.”

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