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SPE 133428

Modeling Thermal Effects on Wellbore Stability

Duc Nguyen, SPE, Stefan Miska, SPE, and Mengjiao Yu, SPE, The University of Tulsa; and Arild Saasen, SPE, Det
norske oljeselskap ASA and the University of Stavanger

Copyright 2010, Society of Petroleum Engineers

This paper was prepared for presentation at the Trinidad and Tobago Energy Resources Conference held in Port of Spain, Trinidad, 27–30 June 2010.

This paper was selected for presentation by an SPE program committee following review of information contained in an abstract submitted by the author(s). Contents of the paper have not been reviewed
by the Society of Petroleum Engineers and are subject to correction by the author(s). The material does not necessarily reflect any position of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, its officers, or
members. Electronic reproduction, distribution, or storage of any part of this paper without the written consent of the Society of Petroleum Engineers is prohibited. Permission to reproduce in print is
restricted to an abstract of not more than 300 words; illustrations may not be copied. The abstract must contain conspicuous acknowledgment of SPE copyright.

Field evidence indicates that the thermal regime in wellbore considerably affects the wellbore stability in directional and horizontal
wells. However, the temperature effects have not been investigated thoroughly in existing literature, and the effects of drilling fluid
flow and various heat sources on the behavior of formation temperature profiles during different operations are often neglected.
The affected formation temperature in the vicinity of the wellbore could result in different formation rock behaviors and
consequent wellbore stability problems. This study is conducted to examine the effect of temperature on the stability of the near
wellbore region, taking into account the heat transfer between formation and flowing drilling fluid with the consideration of
mechanical friction and associated heat sources.

A new model is proposed that is applicable to directional and horizontal wells. The model incorporates thermal effects due to the
drag forces created from the contacts between drillpipe and casing/formation during drilling and tripping operations. It is then
utilized in a number of configurations of directional wells to study temperature profiles behaviors and their effects on wellbore
stability. It is observed that the drilling fluid temperature is noticeably under-predicted by existing literature, and in some cases it
can easily exceed the geothermal formation temperature if mechanical friction is taken into account. The formation temperature
profile near the borehole region is also found to be considerably affected when wellbore heat transfer is considered, as opposed to
the constant wall temperature approach in existing literature. These differences alternate the temperature induced stresses and
consequently change the mud weight window for wellbore stability prediction.

The proposed model and the results of this study are very useful for more accurate analyses of wellbore stability problems with a
more detailed look into the effects of temperature. They can be used to enhance predictions of thermal regime in the wellbore at
the design stage of well development or mud weight selection during drilling operation, thereby, avoiding potential drilling
fluid/drillstring overheating and wellbore stability problems.

The temperature profile during drilling extended reach (ERD) wells can be very different from those of more conventional wells.
This temperature profile can be difficult to calculate. This occurs especially if the water depth is limited and cooling of the drilling
fluid is insufficient. Several North Sea field examples during drilling long 17 ½” and 12 ¼” sections demonstrate that the fluid
temperature can be far in excess of the maximum observed formation temperature in the well. One example is from a long 17 ½”
ERD section where the maximum formation temperature was close to 45°C, while the maximum observed drilling fluid
temperature in the annulus was 86°C. Even the temperature on the shaker was more than 60°C. Indications exist that the increase
in drilling fluid temperature is larger if hole cleaning is good.

When a severe overheating occurs in the fluid, the formation will be consequently overheated after drilling operations. When the
drillstring is finally pulled out of hole and casing is run, the fluid temperature in the casing would be significantly less than during
drilling. Therefore, the formation is cooled too rapidly, possibly leading to hole stability problems. Thus there might be problems
reaching the target depth with the casing. Water based drilling fluids have larger heat capacity, so such problems are not
2 SPE 133428

anticipated to be of the same severity. Likewise, this overheating has not been observed when drilling 8 ½” sections. This is
probably caused by the drilling fluid being pumped more slowly such that there is enough time for the sea water to cool the drilling

Based on these North Sea field experiences, a wellbore temperature model was developed to describe the temperature profile
during drilling, taking into account the effect of flowing fluid and heat generated due to friction. Mechanical friction, although less
mentioned in most studies, appears to be the main heat source contributing to the overheating of drilling fluids. In deviated wells,
the drillpipe is often in contact with the borehole wall, especially in dogleg sections, creating friction between the components.
Friction is also generated at the drillbit during drilling. Actual field damages indicate that a tremendous amount of heat has been
generated, creating a significant force at the points of contact, which wears out inches of steel on the robust tool joints or
underreamers. Therefore, mechanical friction not only adds to the heating of drilling fluids, but also indirectly affects wellbore

Many factors need to be considered in a wellbore stability analysis, and it requires quite comprehensive studies in order to resolve
the problems thoroughly. In summary, the major mechanisms that affect the state of stresses in the rock formation around the
wellbore are: mechanical, hydraulic, thermal and chemical effects. This study focuses on providing a more accurate prediction for
the thermally induced stresses and their effects on wellbore stability prediction, by incorporating the developed wellbore
temperature model. The outcomes are mechanistic and computer models that could be used to analyze wellbore stability problems,
or combined with other models to produce more comprehensive simulations that can better manage various field conditions.

Literature review has been carried out on wellbore heat transfer and wellbore stability. More details are presented by Nguyen8
(2009). In summary, the wellbore temperature model is constructed based on balance of energy in a control volume. Heat
generated by mechanical friction is calculated from contact forces obtained from a 3D drag and torque model. And finally, the
wellbore stability model uses the traditional single point failure approach with consideration of hydraulic and thermally induced

Wellbore Heat Transfer

Basic assumptions for the transient heat transfer model:
 Drilling fluid is incompressible with constant properties;
 Radiation heat transfer is negligible;
 Formation properties are independent of temperature;
 Radial temperature gradient of drilling fluid is negligible.

Drilling Fluid Temperature

For the control volume shown in Fig. 1, the heat balance in the annulus can be expressed as:

Heat transfer Heat transfer Change in

Heat entering Heat exiting
 from drillpipe   from annulus  internal
the annulus the annulus
to annulus to formation energy

Substituting in mathematical quantities yields:

q a ( z  z , t )  q ap  q s  q a ( z , t )  q af  q Ea (1)

qa ( z, t )  mc p , mTa ( z, t )

qa ( z  z, t )  mc p , mTa ( z  z, t )

where qaf  2 r f ha (Ta  T f )z (2)

qap  2 rp ,iU ap (T p  Ta )z
 T
q Ea   m c p ,m Aa a z
 t
SPE 133428 3

U ap is the overall heat transfer coefficient across the drillpipe,

qs is the total heat sources in the segment.

Upon rearrangement, one obtains:

Ta T
A1  A2 a  (Ta  T f )  A3 (T p  Ta )  A4 (3)
t z
 m c p , m Aa mc p , m rp ,oU ap qs
where A1  , A2  , A3  , and A4  . (4)
2rw ha 2rw ha rw ha 2rw ha z

Similarly, heat balance for the drillpipe yields:

T p T p
B1  B2  (Ta  T p ) (5)
t z
 m c p , m Ap ,i mc p , m
where B1  , and B2   . (6)
2rp ,iU ap 2rp ,iU ap

Formation Temperature
The temperature profile of the formation can be obtained through the diffusivity equation with the inclusion of convection heat
transfer of formation pore fluid. Assuming a Darcy flow in the formation, Equation 7 is obtained:

T f   2T f 1 T f   2T f  P T f
  f  2   C (7)
t  r r r  z 2
  r r

 fl c p , fl  f
where C  (8)
 f c p , f  fl 
f  (9)
 f c p, f

Equations 3, 5, and 7 can be solved simultaneously to obtain temperature profiles of drilling fluid and formation along the
wellbore.The finite difference numerical method is utilized.

Frictional Heat Sources

During drilling operations, frictional heat usually originates from the following two main sources:

Viscous friction
Viscous drag friction is created from contacts between drillpipe and formation/casing with the moving drilling fluid as a result
of fluid viscosity effect. However, apart from the case of circulation in a vertical well, viscous friction is often of less significance
when compared to mechanical friction in other circumstances. Therefore, heat generated from viscous drag is neglected in this

Mechanical friction
Friction from drillbit: A considerable amount of work has been done on this subject by various authors for different bit types.
In this study, a general formula by Warren12 (1984) is used to estimate the heat generated at drillbit:
4 SPE 133428

(1   )WOB * ROP  2 N M bit 

qbit  (10)
where J is Joule’s constant, relating the work done and heat generation (J=1 when both sides are in a consistent unit system),
 is bit efficiency (the portion of work done by the drillbit that is used to break the rock),
Friction from drag force between drillpipe and formation/casing: In rotary drilling, heat generated from the drag force is one of
the primary components. However, the effect of this factor on wellbore temperature profiles has not been addressed in recent
studies. Therefore, in order to evaluate the value and significance of drag force, a 3D drag and torque model was investigated.
Details of the drag and torque model can be found from the work of Mitchell and Miska7 (2008) and are summarized in Appendix
A. The unit contact force resulting from the drag and torque model, which subsequently relates to the drag force, is then used to
estimate the heat generated by this mechanical drag:

 In rotating mode (rotary drilling):

1 2
J s1
q drag   f wc rp 2 N ds (11)

 In sliding mode (downhole motor drilling):

1 2
J s1
q drag   f wc ROP ds (12)

where f is friction coefficient,

wc is unit contact force,

Wellbore Stability
When a well is drilled, the rock is replaced by the drilling fluid with different density. Along with the rock’s exposure to
drilling fluid, this leads to an uneven redistribution of rock stresses in the formation, especially around the borehole, causing
different effects on the stability of the well. First, the in-situ stresses and rock deformation are connected to each other using a
linear elastic approach. Then, the effects of pore pressure induced stresses and temperature induced stresses are added to the
system by the principle of superposition. Finally, failure criteria are utilized to determine the limits of deformation and evaluate
rock stability under investigated conditions.

For an inclined wellbore geometry shown in Fig. 2, the well is characterized by its inclination angle and azimuth, measured
from true geological North. A homogeneous and isotropic formation around the wellbore is assumed with constant rock and pore
fluid properties. The stress state caused by the three in-situ principal stresses is rotated to align with the wellbore axes, and then
converted to the cylindrical coordinate system for convenience in wellbore problems. The solution for the pure elastic model can
be found in most literature such as Jaeger and Cook6 (1976) and Fjaer et al.4 (1992). The equations for hydraulic and thermally
induced stresses are presented below without going into detailed derivation:

Induced Stresses due to Changes in Pore Pressure

  P 1  2  1 r rw2
r 2 rw

 rr  P ( r ' , t ) r ' dr '  P
1 
w 2
 r

  P 1  2   1 r  rw2
     2  P(r ' , t )r ' dr '  P(r , t )  Pw 2 (13)
 1   r rw  r

 zz   P 1  2  P(r , t )
 1 

SPE 133428 5

where P is the pore pressure fluctuation, and is given by:

 P ( r , t )  P ( r , t )  P ( r ,0 ) (14)

Induced Stresses due to Changes in Formation Temperature

 T E 1 r rw2
1  r 2 rw
 rr   T f (r ' , t )r ' dr '   T E Tw (t ) 2
 r

 T E  1 r  rw2
1   r 2 rw

    T f ( r ' , t ) r ' dr '  T f ( r , t )    T E Tw (t ) (15)
  r2

 zz    T E T f (r , t )
 1 

where Tw is the borehole wall temperature fluctuation, and is given by:
Tw (t )  T f ( rw , t )  T f ( rw ,0) (16)

Thermo-Poro-Elastic Model
The thermo-poro-elastic model is obtained by superposing in-situ mechanical, hydraulic and thermal induced stress effects.
Equations 13 and 15 are added onto the pure elastic model, and the stress components (Fig. 3) can be expressed as follows:

  xxo   yy
 rw2    xxo   yy
 4 2
  4 2

 rr   1     1  3 rw  4 rw  cos 2   xyo 1  3 rw  4 rw  sin 2
 r 2    4 2   4 2 
 2    2  r r   r r 
rw2  P 1  2  1 r T E 1 r rw2
r 2 rw 1  r 2 rw
 Pw 2  P (r ' , t )r ' dr '  T f (r ' , t )r ' dr '   T E Tw (t ) 2
r 1  r
  xxo   yy
 rw2    xxo   yy
 4
  4
 2
    1     1  3 rw  cos 2   xyo 1  3 rw  sin 2  Pw rw
  r 2    r 4   r 4  r2
 2    2  
 P 1  2   1 r   E1 r  rw2
  2 P ( r ' , t ) r ' dr '  P ( r , t )   T
 2 fT ( r ' , t ) r ' dr '  T ( r , t )    E T (t )
1   1   r r
f T w
 r r w w
 r2
   1  2   E
 zz   zzo  2 xxo   yyo 
2 2
r r
cos 2  4 xyo sin 2   P
P(r , t )  T T f (r , t )
 r2
r 
1  1 
  yy
  xxo  4 2
  4 2

 r   r   1  3 rw  2 rw  sin 2   xyo 1  3 rw  2 rw  cos 2
  4 2   4 2 
 2  r r   r r 
 rw2 
 z   z 
   sin    cos 1  2 
yz 
 r 
 rw2 
 zr   rz   xzo cos   yzo sin  1  .
 r 2 
6 SPE 133428

Failure Criteria
When the formation rock is subjected to sufficiently large stresses, a failure of some kind will occur. Failure criteria define the
limit of deformation before the rock fails due to induced stresses. Most strength criteria are expressed in terms of principal stresses,
which are normal stresses acting on principal planes where all shear stresses are zero. Thus it is necessary to find the orientation of
coordinate system that can satisfy this condition. The procedure of finding principal stresses is equivalent to computing the
eigenvalues of the stress tensor matrix, and this can be achieved with mathematical matrix operations and algorithms.

There are several different criteria used in wellbore stability analysis, most of which apply to a homogeneous rock only. Hence,
to utilize the existing failure criteria for a porous medium saturated with fluid, effective stresses need to be used. The most
commonly used criteria are included in this study: Mohr-Coulomb, Drucker-Prager, Modified Lade, Tensile Failure, etc. Details
about these criteria have been summarized by Nguyen8 (2009) and will not be described here.

The complete model consists of five sub-models: Wellbore Trajectory, Drag & Torque, Wellbore Hydraulics, Wellbore Heat
Transfer, and Wellbore Stability. Each sub model is also available as a stand-alone module that can be used for specific
simulations and studies. The complete algorithm is shown in Fig. 4, with the sub models in bold. A computer simulator is also
developed and utilized in a parametric study and sensitivity analysis.

Sensitivity Analysis
A sensitivity analysis can help determine the important factors that have greatest effects on wellbore stability. Controllable
factors can be adjusted and managed during drilling operation, and thus enhancing the control and stability of the well. On the
other hand, an analysis on uncontrollable parameters can help with categorizing formation types or rock properties in terms of
wellbore stability prediction.

First, it is necessary to determine all of the parameters involved and classify them based on their controllability. As seen in
Table 1, there are approximately 23 controllable parameters and 23 uncontrollable parameters. Using the traditional factorial
approach, if 3 levels of variation are used for each controllable parameter, then the total number of simulation runs will be: 323 =
94,143,178,827. This is clearly impractical in any scope of study. Therefore, the Taguchi approach9 is used to reduce the work
load. This is a statistical optimization method that is very useful in the design of experiments. It helps produce analyses at
relatively high levels of confidence with far fewer experiments. The selection of the Taguchi matrix based on the number of
variables and number of levels is shown in Table 2. For 23 factors with 3 levels, the minimum number of tests is only 36, a
significant reduction from the factorial approach.

Uncontrollable Factors
Uncontrollable factors consist of formation properties and pore fluid properties. The inputs for the base case are shown in
Table 6, and the inputs for 3 levels of variation for each parameter are shown in Table 7. The selection of the Taguchi orthogonal
array is therefore as shown in the following list. All orthogonal arrays used are included in Tables 3 through 5.
 Pure Elastic: L18 (5 factors, 3 levels)
 Poro-Elastic: L27 (10 factors, 3 levels)
 Thermo-Poro-Elastic: L36 (19 factors, 3 levels)

Pure Elastic Model:

After running the computer simulator with the specified Taguchi matrix, the mud weight window is obtained (Table 9). This
information is then examined in an analysis of variance (ANOVA). The p-value calculated is the probability of error involved in
accepting a result as valid (or the probability that the observed relationship in a sample occurred by pure chance). In other words,
(1 – p) represents the level of confidence that the event is statistically significant (i.e., unlikely to have occurred by chance).
Therefore, a lower p-value indicates a higher degree of confidence and vice versa. Typically, a cut-off value of 5% is used, which
means that if a finding has a 95% or more chance of being true (p-value  5%), it can be considered statistically significant.

As seen in Table 10, all factors in the pure elastic model are statistically significant. However, the p-value lacks a
demonstration of the relative effect of each individual factor on the mud weight window. Therefore, a test of significance is usually
accompanied by effect size statistics, which approximate the size and practical importance of each factor. Fig. 5 shows pie charts
for the effect size statistics, with statiscally significant factors in bold red letters. It can be observed that cohesive strength, internal
friction angle and pore pressure gradient have the greatest effect on the prediction of mud weight window.
SPE 133428 7

The shear failure criterion used to analyze wellbore stability (Mohr-Coulomb) takes cohesive strength and internal friction
angle as the controlling rock strength parameters, hence their influence on the final result. And because the pure elastic model
assumes a constant pore pressure profile along the radial direction, the pore pressure gradient – which determines the initial pore
pressure value and consequently the calculation of effective principal stresses – is one of the main factors affecting the outcome.

Poro-Elastic Model:
The same analyses are carried out and the results obtained show some similarities with the pure elastic model in the
significance and effect size of cohesive strength and internal friction angle (Fig. 6). However, when the effect of pore pressure
changes is taken into account, the influence of Biot’s constant is more pronounced. This is due to the additional consideration of
hydraulic induced stresses which is also influenced by Biot’s constant through the effective stress concept by Terzaghi11 (1948)
and Biot1 (1941).

Thermo-Poro-Elastic Model:
Fig. 7 shows the results for thermo-poro-elastic model. The previous rock strength properties (cohesive strength and internal
friction angle) still play an important role in mud weight window prediction as expected. Biot’s constant also has a sizeable effect
on the result, and the influence seems to be more prominent at lower values of Biot’s constant (higher rock compressibility). In
contrast, the thermal related parameters do not display their significance or influence.

Controllable Factors
Controllable factors include wellbore geometry, drilling fluid properties and operating conditions. The inputs for 3 levels of
variation for each parameter are shown in Table 8. The selection of the Taguchi orthogonal array is:
 Pure Elastic: L18 (7 factors, 3 levels)
 Poro-Elastic: L18 (8 factors, 3 levels)
 Thermo-Poro-Elastic: L36 (20 factors, 3 levels)

The analysis of variance for pure elastic and poro-elastic models do not show any statistically significant parameters, perhaps
due to the large variation in some factors’ values with small sample sizes. The results for the thermo-poro-elastic model are shown
in Fig. 8. There are several significant parameters that have sizeable effects on the mud weight windows: wellbore diameter,
azimuth, circulation rate, drilling fluid characterization parameters, drilling fluid specific heat capacity. Upon further investigation,
the effect of circulation rate and drilling fluid heat capacity seem to be less significant due to smaller changes in mud weight
window over large ranges of values. Since the drilling fluid characterization parameters (flow behavior index, consistency index,
and yield point) are considered primarily in the Wellbore Hydraulics model, the true influencing factor here is the pore pressure.
This aspect can be investigated by considering the effect of yield-power law fluid on pore pressure in a separate model.

Usually, one would expect inclination angle to have a noticeable effect on the mud weight window as well. Fig. 9 shows the
simulation results for various inclination angle using different failure criteria. It can be observed that the influence is more
pronounced for higher inclination angles only (more than 60 degrees). This effect is not seen in the analysis of variance due to the
limited number of levels in the Taguchi orthogonal arrays, and the fact that some arrays do not utilize all of the provided levels of

The differences in various failure criteria are also displayed in Fig. 9. Tensile failure criterion provides a conservative cutoff
for upper mud weight limit compared to other shear failure criteria. However, its prediction for lower minimum mud weight is
lower (splitting failure occurs mostly with brittle particles under compressive stress, and shear failure usually happens before
splitting). Mohr-Coulomb criterion is seen to be more conservative than other shear failure criteria and results in a narrower mud
weight window. The Outer Drucker-Prager criterion gives the widest window since it is an approximation that circumscribes the
Mohr-Coulomb hexagonal failure surface.

Other Results
Fig. 10 shows the temperature profiles of drilling fluid in different operating conditions. It can be observed that bottomhole
temperature reaches a very high value in rotary drilling mode (it even exceeds geothermal temperature). On the other hand, in
downhole motor drilling mode, the majority of additional heat added is due to the drillbit; the amount of frictional heat generated
from drag force is negligible (3% of total mechanical heat sources) compared to rotary drilling (75% of total mechanical heat
sources). This is because the rotary speed is much higher than the rate of penetration, and thus drag force in rotating mode is more
significant than in sliding mode. Another important point is that the drilling fluid return temperature seems to be similar for
8 SPE 133428

different cases while downhole temperature varies, indicating that misinterpretation of downhole temperature may be taking place,
which could result in serious problems.
Using this model, the formation temperature profile obtained is also different from those using the constant wall temperature
approach in existing literature (Fig. 11). The transient effect in this model is noticeable in the near wellbore region. These changes
in formation temperature alter the thermally induced stresses in the affected region and consequently change the prediction of mud
weight window. Fig. 12 shows the effect of induced stresses on mud weight window. As hydraulic and temperature induced
stresses are taken into account, the operating window is narrowed down significantly. In this study case, an increase of
approximately 10 degrees Fahrenheit in formation temperature shifts the window up by up to 8%, reducing the chance of wellbore
fracture. Similar to previous results from sensitivity analysis of inclination angle’s effect, the influences are only observed at
higher inclination angles.

 For wellbore stability analysis, significant uncontrollable parameters that have considerable effects on mud weight
window prediction are:
o Cohesive strength;
o Internal friction angle;
o Biot’s constant.
 Significant controllable parameters include:
o Wellbore diameter (hole clearance);
o Azimuth;
o Inclination angle (in highly inclined wells).
 Induced stresses from pore pressure and formation temperature changes narrow down the operating mud weight window.
 Heating of the formation reduces the chance of wellbore fracture while cooling has the reversed effect.
 Bottomhole temperature in rotary drilling mode can exceed formation temperature in a horizontal well.

The authors wish to thank Bjørn Dahl (Optipro As) for the initiation of this project and for providing with initial data. Also thanks
to all member companies of the Tulsa University Research Projects for their financial and technical support throughout this study.

A : cross-sectional area n : normal unit vector
b : binormal unit vector P : (pore) pressure
C : compressibility q : heat rate
cp : heat capacity r : radius
E : modulus of elasticity ROP : rate of penetration
F : force s : length, measured depth
Gt : geothermal gradient T : temperature
h : heat transfer coefficient t : time
k : thermal conductivity ti : tangential unit vector
M : torque, moment U : overall heat transfer coefficient
m : mass flow rate WOB : weight on bit
N : rotary speed z : depth

Greek Letters
 : thermal diffusivity  : viscosity
P : Biot’s constant f : friction coefficient
 : thermal expansion coefficient  : porosity
 : bit efficiency  : density
c : contact force angle  : stress (normal and shear)
 : curvature  : torsion
f : permeability

a : annulus o : outer (radius)
c : contact p : drillpipe
SPE 133428 9

e : effective r : radial
f : formation sf : surface
fl : (pore) fluid t : tangential
i : inner (radius) w : borehole wall
m : mud, drilling fluid z : vertical

1. Biot, M.A.: “General Theory of Three-Dimensional Consolidation,” Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 12 (1941) 155-164.
2. Chen, Guizhong, and Ewy, Russell T.: “Thermoporoelastic Effect on Wellbore Stability,” Society of Petroleum Engineers
Journal (June, 2005) 121-129.
3. Dahl, B., and Saasen, A.: “Heating of wells due to drilling operation,” Industry Presentation at The University of Tulsa
Drilling Research – Advisory Board Meeting (2006).
4. Fjaer, E., Holt, R.M., Horsrud, P., Raaen, A.M., and Risnes, R.: “Petroleum Related Rock Mechanics,” Amsterdam:
Elsevier Science Publishers B.V. (1992).
5. Hasan, A.R., and Kabir, C.S.: “Fluid Flow and Heat Transfer in Wellbores,” Texas: Society of Petroleum Engineers
(2002) 670-674.
6. Jaeger, J.C., and Cook, N.G.W.: “Fundamentals of Rock Mechanics,” New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (1976).
7. Miska, S.Z.: “Advanced Drilling Notes,” The University of Tulsa (2008).
8. Nguyen, Duc: “Modeling of Thermal Effects on Wellbore Stability,” M.S. Thesis, the University of Tulsa (2009).
9. Roy, Ranjit: “A Primer on the Taguchi Method,” New York: Society of Manufacturing (1990).
10. Shahabadi-Farahani, Hamidreza: “Modeling Transient Thermoporoelastic Effects on 3D Wellbore Stability,” M.S.
Thesis, the University of Tulsa (2005).
11. Terzaghi, K. and Peck, R.B.: “Soil Mechanics in Engineering Practice,” New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (1948).
12. Warren, T.M.: “Factors Affecting Torque for a Roller Cone Bit,” paper SPE 11994 (1984).


Appendix A - 3D Soft String Drag and Torque Model

(Summarized from the work of Mitchell and Miska7 - 2008)
The simplified model applies the following assumptions:
 The pipe is in continuous contact with wellbore (no tool joints, couplings, wellbore irregularities or tortuosity effect);
 Inertia effect due to sliding and/or rotation are neglected;
 Fluid flow effects are not considered;
 Friction force is modeled using Coulomb friction concept;
 No consideration of buckling;
 Wellbore trajectory is modeled using minimum curvature method;
 The drillpipe has no bending rigidity and no shear forces.

Figure A.1 - Drag and Torque Analysis

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  
A differential pipe element is considered in a global right hand Cartesian coordinate system with unit vectors i , j , k as
  
depicted in Fig. A.1. Furthermore, a Frenet – Serret local coordinate system is also introduced with unit vectors t , n , b .

The general formulation of force and moment equilibrium is developed as follows:

Equilibrium of force:

dF  
w0 (A.1)
   
 F  Ft t  Fn n  Fb b
where      (A.2)
w  we  wc  wd
Ft is the tangential (axial) force,
Fn is the shear force in normal direction,
Fb is the shear force in binormal direction,
we is pipe effective unit weight,
wc is unit contact force, and
wd is unit drag force.

Equilibrium of moment:

dM    
t F m 0 (A.3)
  
M  EIb  M t t
where     (A.4)
m  rp  wd
EI is pipe bending stiffness,
 is pipe curvature,
M t is the magnitude of moment required for pipe rotation, and

rp is pipe radius vector.

Combine Equations A.1 through A.4, and obtain the corresponding scalar equations for force and moment equilibrium:

 dFt    
 ds  F n  we t  k  wd  t  0

 dFn      
  Ft  Fb  we n  k  wd  n  wc  n  0 (A.5)
 ds
 dFb      
 ds  F n  w e  k  wd  b  wc  b  0

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 dM t  
 ds  m  t  0
  
M t  EI  Fb  m  n  0 (A.6)
 d  
 EI  Fn  m  b  0.
 ds
Equations A.5 and A.6 consist of 6 scalar equations that can be solved simultaneously for the desired components of forces and
moments along the string.

 In sliding mode, M t  0 along the string. Apply simplifying assumptions, Equations A.5 reduces to:
 dFt
 ds  we t z   f wc  0

Ft   we n z  wc cos  c  0 (A.7)
w b  w sin   0
 e z c c

where c is the contact force angle as shown in Fig. A.1, and  f is friction coefficient.

The unit contact force can be calculated as follows:

w  F   w n 2  w b 2
 c t e z e z
 dFt (A.8)
  we t z   f wc  0.
 ds

 In rotating mode, Equations A.5 and A.6 reduce to:

 dFt
 ds  we t z  0

Ft  we n z  wc cos  c   f wc sin  c  0

we bz  wc sin  c   f wc cos  c  0 (A.9)

 dM t   f wc rp  0
 ds
 M   0.
 t

It is observed that the weakness of this simplified model is that the last equation in Equation A.9 cannot be satisfied.
The unit contact force is calculated from:

 dFt
 ds  we t z  0

w  Ft   we bz   we bz 
2 2 (A.10)

 c 1   2f

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Controllable Uncontrollable

Azimuth Density
Inclination angle Specific Heat Capacity
TVD/MD Thermal Conductivity
Borehole Diameter Properties Surface Temperature
Drillpipe ID/OD Geothermal Gradient
Drillstring Pipe Unit Weight in Air Porosity
Pipe Thermal Conductivity Permeability
Flow Behavior Index Maximum Horizontal Stress Gradient
Consistency Index Minimum Horizontal Stress Gradient
Yield Point Overburden Stress Gradient
Density Rock Compressibility
Inlet Temperature Rock Tensile Strength
Specific Heat Capacity Stresses Cohesive Strength
Thermal Conductivity Properties Internal Friction Angle
Heat Transfer Coefficient Modulus of Elasticity
(in Drillpipe and Annulus) Poisson’s Ratio
Circulation Rate Biot’s Constant
Time Thermal Expansion Coefficient
ROP Density
Parameter RPM Formation Viscosity
WOB Pore Fluid Specific Heat Capacity
Bit Torque Compressibility
Friction Coefficient Pore Pressure Gradient

Table 1 - Controllable and Uncontrollable Parameters

Table 2 - Taguchi Orthogonal Array Selection

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Table 3 - Taguchi Orthogonal Array L18

Table 4 - Taguchi Orthogonal Array L27


Table 5 – Taguchi Orthogonal Array L36

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Table 6 – Inputs for the Base Case

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Table 7 - Inputs for Uncontrollable Factors

Table 8 - Inputs for Controllable Factors

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Table 9 - Simulation Results for Uncontrollable Factors (Pure Elastic Model)

Effects p-value Effect Size

Pore Pressure Gradient 0.000000 0.50000

Cohesive Strength 0.000000 1.11111
Mud Weight Internal Friction Angle 0.000000 1.16111
Poisson's Ratio 0.028008 0.11111
Biot's Constant 0.009603 0.14444
Pore Pressure Gradient 0.000000 0.51111
Cohesive Strength 0.000000 1.22778
Internal Friction Angle 0.000180 0.31111
Mud Weight
Poisson's Ratio 0.021461 0.16111
Biot's Constant 0.010276 0.17778

Table 10 – ANOVA Results for Uncontrollable Factors (Pure Elastic Model)

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q p ( z, t)
qa ( z, t )


q af

q ap

z  z

qa ( z  z, t )
q p ( z  z, t )

Figure 1 - Heat Rates in the Control Volume Figure 2 - In-situ Principal Stresses Around a Wellbore

Heat generated Drag & Wellbore

from drag force Torque Model Trajectory

Heat generated Heat generated Wellbore

from mechanical from drillbit Hydraulics

Wellbore Heat Formation Pore Pressure

Transfer Model Temperature Profile Profile

Mechanical (in- Thermally Induced Hydraulic

situ) Stress Stress Induced Stress


Effective Stresses

Failure Criteria

Wellbore Stability
Figure 3 - Stress Components in
Cylindrical Coordinate System Figure 4 - Model algorithm
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(Minimum Mud Weight) (Maximum Mud Weight)

Biot's Constant Biot's  Pore Pressure 

5% Pore Pressure  Constant Gradient
Poisson's Ratio Gradient 8%
4% 21%


Friction Angle Cohesive  Internal  Cohesive 
38% Strength Friction Angle Strength
37% 13% 51%

Figure 5 - Effect Size of Uncontrollable Factors on Mud Weight Window (Pure Elastic)

(Maximum Mud Weight)
(Minimum Mud Weight)

Pore Fluid  Formation 
Pore Fluid  Porosity
Pore Fluid  Viscosity Compressibility
Pore Fluid  1% 4%
Compressibility Formation  Biot's  1%
Biot's Constant 1% Porosity Formation 
5% Constant
2% Permeability
12% 16% 1%
Permeability Rock 
Poisson's Ratio 4% Compressibility
4% 0%
Poisson's Ratio
Rock  Pore Pressure 
Compressibility Gradient
2% 1%

Pore Pressure 
4% Internal 
Friction Angle Cohesive 
Friction Angle Cohesive  20% Strength
28% Strength 50%

Figure 6 - Effect Size of Uncontrollable Factors on Mud Weight Window (Poro-Elastic)

20 SPE 133428

(Minimum Mud Weight)

Biot's Constant
Poisson's Ratio 11%

Pore Pressure Gradient
10% Cohesive Strength
Modulus of Elasticity

Thermal Expansion 

Formation Thermal 

Misc. Internal Friction 

(Maximum Mud Weight)

Cohesive Strength
Biot's Constant 26%

Poisson's Ratio Internal Friction 
17% Angle

Pore Pressure Gradient Misc.
4% 7%

Modulus of Elasticity
6% Pore Fluid Density
Thermal Expansion 
Coefficient Formation Density
5% 2%
Formation Geothermal  Formation Specific Heat 
Formation Thermal 
Gradient Capacity
2% 1%

Figure 7 - Effect Size of Uncontrollable Factors on Mud Weight Window (Thermo-Poro-Elastic)

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(Minimum Mud Weight)

Consistency Index Drillpipe Unit Weight  Time

3% In Air WOB 1% HoleSize
2% 2%
Drilling Fluid Inlet 
3% Yield Point
Bit Torque 10%
Friction Coefficient Flow Behavior 
4% Index
Circulation Rate 9%

Drilling Fluid Heat  Azimuth
Transfer Coefficient in  Drilling Fluid  8%
Annulus Specific Heat 
8% Capacity

(Maximum Mud Weight)

Drilling Fluid Heat 
Drillpipe Unit  Transfer Coefficient in  Time
Weight In Air Drillpipe
3% Drillpipe Thermal 
3% 2%
WOB Conductivity
2% 4%
Consistency Index
Hole Size
Bit Torque
Friction Coefficient
Yield Point
Circulation Rate 12%
Drilling Fluid Heat 
Transfer Coefficient in 
Drilling Fluid  Flow Behavior 
1% Specific Heat  RPM Index
Azimuth 1% 14%

Figure 8 - Effect Size of Controllable Factors on Mud Weight Window (Thermo-Poro-Elastic)

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Figure 9 - Effect of Inclination Angle with Different Failure Criteria

Figure 10 - Temperature Profiles of Drilling Fluid in Different Operating Conditions

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Constant Wall Temperature Approach Variable Wall Temperature Approach

(Shahabadi-Farahani10 – 2005) (Wellbore Heat Transfer considered)

Figure 11 – Difference in Near-Wellbore Formation Temperature between two Approaches

Figure 12 - Mud Weight Window vs. Inclination Angle for Different Models