An Overview and Discussion of MPD Systems used in Offshore Operations
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- Master's theses (TN-IEP) 
Globally, established fields are reaching maturity and easily accessible reserves have already been exploited. The remaining reserves are generally more difficult to drill and attempting to drill them using conventional methods may cause problems in form of increased NPT, safety risks as well as increased costs. Due to the problems these wells face, exploring them may be uneconomic as the expenses may absorb the profits. This development calls for a new and improved drilling technique. There are several types of problematic formations and there is no single technique that can address all the challenges that arise from drilling in such formations. Therefore, several different methods have been developed to mitigate these challenges and collectively these techniques are referred to as Managed Pressure Drilling (MPD). This thesis explains how the different MPD methods work, what equipment is needed and in which cases the methods can provide more productive drilling. The technologies that will be discussed are called; Constant Bottom Hole Pressure drilling, Controlled Mud Level drilling and Pressurized Mud Cap Drilling. As the name Manage Pressure Drilling implies, the key principle for all these methods is to manage the pressure. The petroleum industry can, in many ways, be considered conservative and many companies are reluctant to test new drilling technologies. In some cases, it can be rewarding to give new and untried methods such as MPD a chance. However, MPD cannot be used on every well to increase efficiency, there must be an actual need for this technology for it to be profitable.
Master's thesis in Petroleum Engineering