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lADC/SPE
lADC/SPE 14765
Applications

of a BHA Analysis Program in Directional Drilling

by S. Rafie, H.-S. Ho, and U. Chandra, M- Technology Systems/NL

Industries Inc.

MembersSPE

Copyright 1988, lADC/SPE 1986 Drilling Conference


This paper was prepared for presentation at the 1986 lADC/SPE DrillingConference held in Dallas. TX, February 10-12, 19S6.
This paper waa selected for presentationby an IADCLSPEProgram Committee followingreview of informationcontained in an abstract submittedby the
author(a).Contents of the paper. as presented, havenotbeenreviewed
WtheS~ietY of petroleum En9ineers or lnterna~onalAss~iation of Drillin9
Contractorsand are subject to correctionby the author(s).The meterial, as presented, does not necessarily reflect any positionof the IADC or SPE, itsof.
ficera, or members. Papers presented at IADWSPE maatings are subject to publicationby Editorial Committees of the IADC and SPE. Permissionto
copy ia restrictedto an abstract of not more than 300 words. Illustrationsmay not be copied. The abstract shouldcontainconspicuousackno~!edgment
of where and by whom the paper is presented. Write Publications Manager, SPE, P.O. Box 833S36, Richardson, TX 750S3-3836. Telex, 730969
SPEDAL.

BHA (bottom hole assembly), and (2) the inherent


drilling characteristics of the formation and the bit. TM
paper willdeal with only the firstfactor.

Abstract
The application of athree-dimensional d~ectional
drilling computer program, named DIDRIL*, is dscussed. It is used to analyze building, dropping, and
holding assemblies in straight, 2-D curved, and 3-D
curved (spiral) boreholes. The effects of WOB, TOB,
and borehole curvature on the build/drop and walk
trends of the assemblies are studied. The results show
that the curvature of the borehole has strong influence
on the build/drop and walk tendencies of BHAs,
whereas the TOB has little effect.

The pioneering work on drillstring deformation


and BHA analysis was done by Lubinski and
Woods1i2. Their analysis was first limited to straight
holes with slick assemb$esl, and later extended to
single stabilizer assemblies. However, the assemblies
used in the present day drilling are much more complex. It, therefore, becomes necessary to use generalbed mathematical formulations and computers to
solve the resulting equations.

Introduction

During the last 30 years, several attempts of th~


nature have been made. Among these, Fischer3developed a 2-D program for curved boreholes, based on a
finite dtierence method. Millheimw and co-workers
utiliid a finite element code to analyze the BHA deformation, and suggested that the magnitude and direction of the bit side force, not the resultant bit force,
determines the building and dropping tendencies of
the BHA. Recently, there have been e?forts on developing the theoretical formulations for ddlstrings under
three-dimensional large deformationssg. However, the
resulting equations are very complex and they require
appropriate simplifications before any practical application.

The main issue in directional drilling is to control


the direction of the borehole to conform to a predetermined trajectory. Undesirable deviations from the
planned well-path increase the drillingcost through the
need for course corrections, and the added potential
troubles associated with key seating, pipe ticking, and
even side tracking due to lost tool.
The cause of undesirable hole deviation is stillnot
well understood. Experience from the field along with
theoretical considerations point to the following two
main factors: (1) the deformation characteristics of the
References and illustrations at end of paper

.2A=

DIDRIL is a trademark of NL Industries, Inc.

.
Applications of a BHA Analysis Program In Diraotional Drilling

A project was recently initiated at NL Industries in


the directional drilling area. The first phase of the project involves the development of a general threedimensional BHA analysis program to predict the
build/drop and walk trends of BHAs. The second
phase hcludes the development of a theoretical rockbit interaction model to predict the actual direction (not
simply the tendency) of drilling. Finally,the two phases
willbe integrated to develop a drillahead capabfity. As
indicated earlier, the scope of thk paper is limited to the
work under the first phase.
This paper presents a brief description of the underlying mathematical development, the program
coding concepts, and the applications of the code. Emphasis is on demonstrating the capabilities of the program, and on showing the effects of various factors,
such as WOB, TOB (torque on bit), and borehole curvature, on the build/drop and walk trend predktions.

Mathematical Bask
The governing relations describing the 3-D deformation of a drillstring were derived using the large deformation theory of elasticity, The model considers a
general set of loadings on the drillstring. The derivation
yields two fourth-order coupled nonlinear equations
for the lateral displacements (U,Vj relative to an undeformed coordinate system. To reduce the complexity,
an order-consistent simplification was devised that
contains the following features: (1) It retains consistent
second order terms, (2) It reduces to the classical small
deformation theory when these second order t-rns
are dropped, and (3) It contains explicit formulas
showing the source of bit side forces. Concepts of this
model willbe separately published elsewhere.
In DIDRIL, the following simplified governing
equations from this model are used, expressed in a
right-handed coordinate system with z-axis along the
line connecting the bit to a survey point above the BHA
(see Fig. 1):

SPE 14765

where:

U,v =
()

s
E=
1=
T=

N=

q*

drillstdng deflections in x- and y- directions


respectively
(d/ds) ~ (d/&)
distance along the drillstring axis
modulus of elasticity
moment of inertia
torque along tlw Mlstring axis (positive for
right-hand Mling)
axial force along the drillstring axis (positive
for compression)
effective weight per unit Iength of drillstring
in x-direction
contact force in x-direction

Equations (1) cannot be solved in closed-form


due to several complexities, such as varying sectional
and material properties of collars and subs, stabilizer
placements, borehole curvatures, and contacts between the drillstring and the borehole wall.
In DIDRIL, the equations (1) are solved numerically by the finite dtierence method. Iterative solutions
are carried out to achieve convergence of the solution
and to determine the locations of contacts between the
drillstringand the borehole. The key assumptions used
in the program are:
The center of the bit coinddes with the borehole centerline (i.e. no bit offset).
s There are no bending moments on the bit.
The top portion of the BHA is in contact with
the low side of the borehole wall.
The contacts between the dri&ring and borehole wall can occur only in the vertical plane, at
low and high sides of the borehole wall.
The solution algorithm used in the computer program is schematically shown in Figure 2.

Applications
(E I U)-())

+(NU)

=q, -q,
.. ...(1)

(E IV)

+ (TU)

+(NV)

=0

..

As mentioned e+r, to predict the actual direction of drilling we ~ :ount for the BHA deforcharacteristics of the rock
mation, as weIl ac
;. is only meaningful to adand bit. Without,. ~.!
dress the deviation ren~.lldea of the BHA. For this
purpose, we can either use the resultant bit force direction or the bit side force components as indicators of
build/drop and walk trends. The latker is adopted in

>C
-G

4 A712C
I+(UU

Saeed Rafie, HwaJ3hanHo.


. and Umesh Chandra

the bit skte force is much less than that in the other two
BHAs and this fact is responsible for the holding characteristic of this assembly.

our computer program. In Figure 3 we show the reaction forces on the formation in a two-dimensional (vertical) plane. The side force acts normal to the borehole
axis, whereas the WOB acts along the deformed drillstring axis.

Two-D/mensional Boreholes
Simple BHA analysis in straight boreholes often
succes.sfdly predicts the deviation trend, but some unsuccessful cases have been observed from the actual
drillingprocess. Building assemblies have dropped angles, dropping assemblies have built angles, and
holding assemblies have shown significant building or
dropping trends. Field analyses have indicated that,
even though these wells might appear to be relatively
straight, they stillhave some curvatures in both inciination and azimuth duections,

Three commonly used multistabilizer assemblies


for building, dropping and holding angle are considered in this paper. Duectional tendencies of these assemblies are determined for different WOB and
borehole curvatures. For convenience, curvature is
simply defined as the rate of change of either inclination or azimuth angle along the measured depth. Ifthe
respective angle is increasing along the measured
depth, the curvature is positive. The analysis is done in
three parts according to the current trajectories of the
borehole (i.e. straight, 2-D curved, and 3-D curved
boreholes). Table 1 gives the detailed specifications for
the components in these assemblies, borehole size and
mud weight used in the analysis.

This part of the paper demonstrates the effect of


the borehole inclination curvature on the deviation tendencies of BHAs. Borehole curvature is defined as the
rate of change of the inclination angle along the measured depth. Ifthe inclination angle is increadng along
the measured depth, the curvature is positive, Boreholes are considered to be in the vertical plane with no
changes in azimuth direction (i.e. 2-D cuwed boreholes). The analysis is done for a constant WOB of 50
kips, borehole inclination angle at the bit of 30 degrees,
and different magnitudes of the borehole curvatures
from zero (straight borehole) to 6 degrees per 100 feet
as shown in Figures 7-9.

Straight Boreholes
The assemblies were analyzed in straightbut inclined boreholes with inclination angles from 10 to 50
degrees. The bit side force was determined for different
magnitudes of WOB from zero to 50 kips. Figures 4-6
show the variation of the bit side force with WOB and
inclination angles for building, dropping and holding
assemblies, respectively. The results indicate that the
effects of WOB and borehole inclination on the deviation tendencies of BHAs vary according to the assembly type.

The results indicate the same bade efiect of curvature for all types of BHAs. Namely, the positive curvature reduces the building trend, while the negative
curvature increases the building trend. These trends
are due to the natural tendency of the BHA to return to
a straight profile when it is forced into a curved borehole.

Building Assembly. Figure4 shows that the bit side


force increases with the borehole inclination and
WOB. However, the effect of WOB is less significant
for inclination angles less than 30 degrees.

Building Assembly. Figure7 shows that in boreholes


with positive cuwature of more than 6 degrees per 100
feet th~ building assembly drops angle.

Dropping Assembly. The magnitude of the dropping


side force at the bit increases with the borehole inclination, but reduces with WOB as shown in Figure 5.
Consequently the assembly will drop less for greater
WOB.

Dropping Assembly. Figure8 shows that for boreholes with negative curvatures of more than 2 degrees
per 100 feet this dropping assembly builds angle.

Holding Assembly. The direction and magnitude of


the bit side force as shown in Figure 6 is strongly affected by the borehole inclination and WOB. For small
inclination angles, the assembly shows a weak building
tendency. For inclination angles greater than 20 degrees, it drops angle. In either case,the magnitude of

Holding Assembly Figure 9 shows that this assembly willdrop or build angle depending on the positive or negative curvature of the borehole.
fiese
QA7

T,

examplgs show the strong .@fectof the

.
Applications of a BHA Analysis Program in Directional Drilling

SPE 1476

2. The WOB has small effect on the deviation tendency of the holding assembly, whereas it has significant effect on the deviation tendencies of the
building and dropping assemblies.

borehole curvature on the BHA deviation tendency,


Therefore, strictly speaking, the common categorization of BHAs into building/dropping/holding
assembly is inaccurate without due consideration of the
borehole curvature. It is also recommended that the
borehole survey data be measured more accurately
and at shorter intervals, e.g. every 30 feet using measurement while drilling (MWD) tools.

3. The deviation tendencies of BHAs are strongly affected by the existing curvature of the borehole.
This is due to the natural tendency of the BHAs to
return to a straight profile when they are placed in a
curved borehole.

Three-Dimensional Curved Boreholes


4. The effect of curvature on the bit side force in one
direction (inclination or azimuth) is significant
within the same direction, but insignificant in the
other direction.

The selected assemblies are analyzed for dtierent


inclination and azimuth curvatures from 1 to 3 degrees
per 100 feet. Constant WOB of 50 kips and TOB of
5000 ft-lb are used. Due to the space limitation, only
boreholes that have positive inclination and azimuth
curvatures (i.e. building angle and walking to the right)
are considered herein.

5, The effect of TOB on the bit side forces is very


small.

The results from the analysis for building, dropping, and holding assemblies are shown in Figures 1015. These figures indicate that the magnitude of the bit
side force in the azimuth direction is significantly affected by the borehole azimuth curvature, but not by its
inclination cumature. L&eWise, the magnitude of the
bit side force in the inclination direction is affected by
the borehole inclination curvature, but not by its azimuth curvature. The implication of these results is that
the effect of curvature in one duection (e.g. inclination
or azimuth) is significant within the same dwection, but
insignificant in the other direction.

Acknowledgments

The effect of TOB on the BHA deviation trends is


also studied for dtierent magnitudes of torque from
zero to 10,000 ft-lb. The borehole is considered to be
curved having 2/ 100 feet inclination curvature and
1/100 feet azimuth curvature. The results as shown
in Table 2 indicate that the change in TOB has very
small effect on the bit side force.

References

The authors wish to express their appreciation to


NL Industries, Inc. for granting permission to publish
this paper. Thanks are due to S. Malguarnera for his
encouragement throughout the course of thii project.
Special thanks are due to M. Foutsj J. Warner and C.
Jermingsfortheir help in preparing the manuscript and
graphics.

1-

Lubinski, A. and Woods, H. B.: Factors Affecting the Angle of Inclination and DogLegging in Rotary Bore Hole, Drill. & Prod.
Prace, API (1953) 222-250.

2-

Woods, H. B., and Lubinski, A.: Use of Stabilizers in Controlling Hole Deviation, Drill. &
Prod. Prac., API (1955) 165-182.

The following conclusions are drawn from the


analyses of the selected building, dropping and
holding assemblies for dtierent WOB, TOB and borehole curvatures.

3-

Fischer, FJ,: Drillstring Mechanics, Part 11:


Static Drillstringin a Two-Dimensional, Curved
Borehole, Report BRC-EP 15-74+ Shell Development, Houston, Texas (1972)

1. A three-dimensional BHA analysis computer program is necessary for determining the deviation
tendencies (i.e. build/drop and walk) of BHAs in
curved boreholes.

4-

Millheim, K.: Single Stabilizer Behavior Described,Oil and G-m Journal (Nov. 1978) 98106.

Conclusions

.
E 14765

Sae~Rafie, HwaShan Ho, and Umesh Chandra


}

5-

MIUheim, K.: Behavior of Mukip~+ Stabilizer


Bottom Hole Assemblies, 011and Gas Journal
(Jan. 1979) 59-64.

6-

Mlliheim, K.: The Effect of Hole Curvature on


the Trajectory of a Borehole, Paper SPE 6779
presented at the 52nd Annual Fall Technical
Conference and Exhibition, Denver, Colorado,
October 9-12,1977

7-

Mlllheim, K., Jordan, S,, and Ritter, C. J.:


Bottom-Hole Assembly Analysis Using the Finite Element Method, Journal of Petroleum
Technology(Feb. 1978) 265-274.

8-

Walker, B. H., and Friedman, M.B.: ThreeDlmensional Force and Deflection Analysis of a
Variable Cross-Section Drillstringn, J. of Press.
Vessel Tech. (May 1977) 367-373; Trans. of
ASME

9-

Dunayevsky, VA., and Judzis, A.: Conservative and Nonconservative Buckling of Drill
Pipe, 58th Annual SPE of AIME Tech. Conf.,
San Francisco (1983)

349

SE

14765

TABLE1.
DEBCRIPTIONOF THE BHAa

BUILDING ABBEMBLY

2
3 ~
u

2
v

60

50

O.D. = 8.0
I.D. = 2.25
D hole = 1225

2
v
o

60

DROPPINGABBEMBLY D

..1

,.1

10 ;

HOLDING AB3EMBLY

2
v
.u.

&25

O.D. = 6.75
I.D. = 2.25
D~
= 8.75

3:

30

30

2
w
A

50

v
a

u
o
O.D. = 6.75
I.D. = 2.25
%010 = 8.75

625

625

al
4

30

50

E=3OX1OPS

MUD WEIGHT = 10 PPG

TABLE2.
EFFECT OF TORQUEON THE BIT BIDEFORCEB

DroppingAss6mblY

BuildingA&lolTtbiy
Torque
(ft.-:b.)

~ Inclination
Force
(lb.)

Azimuth
Force
(lb.)

Inclination
Force
(lb.)

Azimuth
Force
(lb.)

Inclination
Force
(lb.)

Azimuth
Force
(lb.)

2735

753

-1124

339

-2129

679

50W

2735

737

-1125

33a

-2130

682

Io,ooo

2735

727

-1126

236

-2130

687

SPE
BOREHOLE AXIS

14(65

l,.

INPUT

SURVEYDATA
r WOB,TOE, MUD
LBHACONFIGURATION

CONSTRUCT
BOREHOLE
TRAJECTORY
k
IMPOSE
CONTACT
CONSTRAINT

SOLVEFOR
DEFLECTIONS

DRILLSTRING/SOREH2LE
VERTICAL

w
S&

N BIT
-------

..

e
OUTPUT

FIND BIT
FORCES& ANGLES

coordinate system in DIDRIL.

FIND FORCESAND
MOMENTSALONG
DRILLSTRING

Fig. lReference

YES

Fig. 2Flow chart of DIDRIL.

SORE140LEAXIS +

--

Fig. 3Forces on the formation for a dropping assembly.

.
----~

WB (KIPS)

INCLINATION
ANGLE

-lw-

INCLINATION
ANGLE

-ZQ1

-w .

:400v

E
g

Ill

-em.

st
m-600 -

-1

------m

-m -

1-

10

1000

;
4

lo2030~~~

I
-em

WOB(KIPS)

Fig. 4Building assembly unstraight borehoies.

Fig. 5Dropping asaembly unstraight boreholes.

(a) NEGATIVE CURVATURESOREHOLE


(b) POSITIVE CURVATURESOREHOLE

-1oo

.1so

.s00+
SOREHOLEINCLINATIONCURVATURE(/100)
-m

Fig. 6Holding assembly inatraight boreholes.

Fig. 7BuilWng assembly in 2-D curved boreholes.

~pE

I
I

(a) NEGATIVE CURVATURESOREHOLE


(b) POSITIVE CURVATUREBOREHOLE

1,4765

(@NEGATIVE CURVATUREeOREHOLE
@) POSiTIVE CURVATUREBOREHOLE

lWO-

locas
*
UI
v
f
w

~-

0-

3
~

BOREHOLEINCLINATIONCURVATURE(*/l W)
-s00 -

-1OOO
-

-lE40 -

-2000 _
Fig.

EDropping

aaaembly

.,

in 2-D curved boreholes.

Fig. 9Holding assembly in 2-D curved boreholea.

...

BOREHOLEAZIMUTH CURVATUREWIM)

1------Fig. 10Building assembly in3-Dcuwed


inclination side force.

boreholea-

BOREHOLEAZIMUTH CURVATUREf/lM)

Fig. 11Building assembly in3-Dcumed


azimuth aide forca.

--

kreholes

14765

WE

EOREHOLEAZIMWH CURVATURE(flW)

r
-K@

EOREHOLE
INCLINATION
CURVATURE

-lCUI

~nl

2*noo

1.

3*nm I

-lsm-

BOREHOLEAZIMUTHCURVATURE(f10)

Fig. 12Dropping assembly in 3-D curved boreholesinclination side force.

Fig. 13Dropping assembly in 3-D curved boreholes


azimuth aide force.

SOREHOLE
INCLINATION
CURVATURE

0
I
2ooo-

SOREHOLE
INCLINATION
CURVATURE

g
B

-Iooo -

q.nwi

-m

2*nwf

~
~
s
g

~
1000

g
w.
u
$

--

aon~

I_-!
Fig. 14Holding assembly in 3-D curved boreholea
inclination side force.

1
BOREHOLEA21MUlH CURVATURErfl@)

Fig. 15-Holding assembly in 3-D curved boreholes


ezimuth side fOrcO.