Extreme HPHT Projects – Project Optimization in Gulf of Mexico

07/04/2016 - Innovation, R&D, Oil&Gas, OCTG

Optimization Results in Overall Reduction of Costs and Time for Major Oil and Gas Company

Vallourec was awarded a supply material contract for a 5 well project in the Gulf of Mexico. The products to be used were 9 7/8" 66.9# VM125HYHC with VAM® SLIJ-II.

The parameters for production were defined and agreed at the initial Pre-Production Meeting with the Major oil company. Vallourec developed a dedicated Quality Plan for pipe and thread production that included the specific customer enhancements: 

  • Specific monitoring steps due to first time production,
  • Additional mechanical testing,
  • Additional physical measurements of pipe to establish nominal vs actual.

These measurements identified the ID values due to other equipment, e.g. packers being set inside, and took into consideration the customer's history of oversized pipe where they have received pipes with larger nominal IDs than expected.

The initial string was delivered successfully along with requested data packages on the the required inspection and monitoring of the production.

A feedback loop was implemented with the operator due to the successful delivery of the pipe and connections.

All the results were reviewed in detail including the timing through production, mechanical results, dimensional information, additional required data, the reports from the TPIs, provided documentation, and touch points of the pipe after delivery.

Case study 3 – Lessons Learned:

This feedback loop generated a revision of the Quality Plan, allowing for optimizing the actual and requested operations. It resulted in an overall reduction of costs and time, removal of communication inefficiencies, and improved monitoring. This process also aided in rig running efficiencies based upon the improved pipe range length resulting in a reduction of number of overall joints.

Generic themes are visible throughout the 3 case studies we published:
Assumptions: They are made by both supplier and operator. Most have the same understanding, but they are not always 100% accurate and require 'fine-tuning' and a modified interpretation. These cases clearly illustrated that effective communication can reduce lost time and frustration.

Definitions/Understanding: The explanation of what is understood by the words utilized and associated responsibilities ensures clear lines of responsibilities and project delivery.

Feedback: This is key in the proper development of the 2nd phase of a project, and generates improvements both technically and commercially. Performing analysis on additional data can provide the operator with a better view of the OCTG supplied.

Due to the long term delivery for HPHT wells, early involvement in the process is critical. It allows the best utilization of resources from 'off the shelf' and 'new production'. Charting a timeline based on development, if required, and not just delivery - can take up to 2 years prior to project commencement.


Active collaboration and communication will aid in the aspects mentioned above to transform actions to be both explicit and specific. This will lead to additional refinements/enhancements on repeated orders.

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