An Operator in Egypt’s Western Desert Drills their Longest Interval in the Meleiha West Deep Area

Discovery Call

An operator in Egypt recently partnered with Ulterra to drill their longest interval in the Meleiha West Deep field. While encountering the lower Alam El Bueib (AEB) formation, the formation transitions into highly interbedded lithology containing high abrasive sandstone and siltstone. Typical performance in this field requires at least two bits to drill the interval, especially due to challenges faced in the AEB formation.

Considering the drilling parameters, Ulterra’s team proposed their 8.5” U616M equipped with OMEGA™ cutters, designed with an impact focus. This operator paired Ulterra’s U616M with a motorized power drive rotary steerable system (RSS).

During this drilling operation, the bit initially went through water-based mud to a depth of 8,550 ft. until the drilling parameters switched to an oil-based mud. While changing drilling fluid, drill bit performance typically declines, and the bit is commonly pulled out of the hole to deploy another one. Considering the vitality of the bit, this operator continued to drill which saved major trip and operating costs. Ulterra’s U616M maintained its ROP and drilled to total depth, reaching 7,675 ft. to drill the longest 8.5” interval in the Meleiha West Deep area. Drilling 7,675 ft. while maintaining an average ROP of 62 ft/hr to complete the interval, Ulterra’s U616M drilled 1,989 ft worth of the AEB formation.

In addition to becoming the longest run achieved for this operator in the last three years, this performance set a new distance standard in the Meleiha West area. This was also the longest run achieved for 8.5” matrix body Ulterra bits during this year in all of Egypt.

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