Beacon has recently qualified our newly developed VM130MS grade for their 20K project of Shenandoah located in the deepwater U.S. Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Louisiana. First feedback shows a clear interest for this high-strength carbon steel grade combined with sour service performance.
Offshore oil and gas operations in the Gulf of Mexico continue to trend towards developing high-pressure/high-temperature (HP/HT) fields for wells up to 20,000 psi (20K) as a result of exploring further offshore, drilling in deeper waters and drilling to greater well depths. These wells require production casing with high-strength materials while keeping good sour service performances.
Given the very high stress found in HP/HT wells, it was necessary to find a grade that could meet particularly demanding criteria that combined both high mechanical strength and resistance to corrosion in a sour environment. The current grades available on the market only met one of these two criteria. It is in this frame of mind that Vallourec developed a carbon steel grade (VM130MS) combining both high strength (130ksi SMYS) and good sour service performances in mild sour environment, inside region 2 as per NACE MR0175. This grade is also available with high collapse performances (VM130HCMS).
The VM130MS grade has been successfully qualified for Beacon based on NACE Method A tests performed under mild sour conditions at seabed temperature (38°F) with pH 3.9 to 5 and partial pressure of H2S 0.003bar to 0.03bar/0.05psi to 0.40psi.
This grade has been qualified through the strenuous I3P process for deepwater high-pressure Gulf of Mexico environments. The VM130MS grade has also been successfully qualified for heavy wall thickness so that it can also be used as base material for casing accessories. Thus, OFS/OEMs can utilize Vallourec’s VM130MS to produce accessories such as float equipment (float shoe/float collars) and solid body centralizers as well as material for casing crossover from upper to lower production tie-back (11.9’’ OD x 2.0’’ WT).
3,000 tons of pipes in VM130MS out of 6,000 have already been delivered for the production tie-back as illustrated on this diagram.
Beacon reports that the timely validation of this high-strength material made Vallourec’s product the perfect fit for the project. VM130MS is a great steel grade solution for 20K HPHT wells with high mechanical properties in mild sour environments, optimizing well design and presenting material continuity from top to bottom of the casing string including OCTG accessories.