EDR Systems Improve Visibility of Drilling Operations

The benefits of electronic drilling record technology (EDR) are becoming more recognized among the horizontal directional drilling (HDD) industry, with a greater number of rig contractors deploying EDR technology as a standard part of their drilling package.

Companies like Direct Horizontal Drilling Inc. deploy EDR technology on every rig, and in collaboration with its EDR provider Stream Services are tailoring the technology to the HDD rig application.

RELATED: Direct Horizontal Develops Wireless HDD Tool

Lon Briscoe, president, Direct Horizontal Drilling, first began using EDRs in the HDD industry in 1997 and brought the technology to Direct Horizontal in 2001. “Direct Horizontal Drilling uses electronic drilling recorder on all of our rigs to protect our clients and ourselves,” he says. Since 2001 the contractor as recorded more than 200,000 hours of data.

Most EDRs on the market are focused on multiple sectors of the contract rig industry and offer the same product on a drilling rig, a service rig and an HDD rig by simply turning on and off features. Although the features are versatile and adapt to meet the needs of all sectors, typically they are originally targeted toward the drilling rig market. This means the features are not specifically customized to the differences that exist between the drilling rig market and the HDD rig market.

EDRs offer contractors and operators full visibility of their drilling operation as it progresses through a sophisticated network of sensors, servers, touchscreens and instrumentation. The EDR collects a vast amount of data, which Stream Services protects with the most stringent cyber security protocols. Any user can access this data to remotely monitor and analyze real-time drilling operations through the office and mobile applications Stream Services offers.

Additionally, the Stream Services EDR provides cellular/satellite internet and phones to the rig site, which essentially transforms it into a secure WiFi enabled network. This keeps the data and communication channels live at all times. Traces and drilling parameters such as ROP, total depth, rotary torque, pump pressure, fluid volume, bit and reamer position, are all just one click away when a rig with an EDR installed is deployed. This is a significant advantage given that remote operating environments are common in the HDD industry.

An EDR also streamlines reporting with tour sheets and payroll being integrated into the system. Additionally, HDD rig activity can be compiled daily, monthly, or yearly into an easy to read pie chart format that easily lets the operator see their rig’s efficiencies. One of the key indicators of success that is easily visible in these pie charts is non-productive time (NPT). Since deploying the Stream EDR, NPT on its drilling projects has remained below 0.5 per cent.

RELATED: Experienced Staff, High-Quality Equipment Play Vital Role in Direct Horizontal’s Success

Although, Direct Horizontal Drilling has offered EDR technology for a number of years as part of the rig package, it was just under a year ago that the Alberta-based contractor brought the Stream Services platform onboard as its EDR of choice. Stream Services has a mandate to be the most client focused EDR provider and offer unrivaled support to their clients.

“We are committed to being actively engaged in our client’s operations and to evolving with our clients to enhance the drilling services they offer,” says Cody Blanchard, technical marketing representative, Stream Services. For Direct Horizontal Drilling, this mandate has translated into a partnership where they soon will be able to offer clients services that are tailored specially for their drilling applications.

There are four specific features that will be added to the Stream Services EDR in 2019 that were developed specifically for HDD rig application. These include:

  • Customized tour sheets designed for the HDD requirements

  • Real-time directional surveys that are WITS into Stream EDR

  • Real-time comparison of plan vs actual as drilled surveys, that includes a two-dimensional plot, with well plans loaded directly into the Stream EDR

  • Pull reports generated as the wells are completed and include Torque, Pull Pressure, and Pump Pressure

With efficiencies and performance being at the forefront of the industry, the need for EDR becomes more crucial in the HDD market. Contractors like Direct Horizontal Drilling tha deploy an EDR, such as Stream Services, as part of its standard drilling package can offer unique solutions to operators; and with companies like Stream customizing EDR features to the HDD market, wells will continue to be drilled faster and with less down time.
Justin Hedemann is business development at Direct Horizontal Drilling.

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