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Patent Analysis of

Multi-gauge wrap wire for subterranean sand screen

Updated Time 12 June 2019

Patent Registration Data

Publication Number

US10000993

Application Number

US14/699634

Application Date

29 April 2015

Publication Date

19 June 2018

Current Assignee

BAKER HUGHES, A GE COMPANY, LLC

Original Assignee (Applicant)

BAKER HUGHES INCORPORATED

International Classification

E21B43/08,B01D29/44,B01D29/03

Cooperative Classification

E21B43/088,B01D29/03,B01D29/445,B01D2201/184

Inventor

MANN, CHANCE E.,RICHARD, BENNETT M.,JOHNSON, MICHAEL H.,ROSENBLATT, STEVE

Patent Images

This patent contains figures and images illustrating the invention and its embodiment.

US10000993 Multi-gauge wrap wire subterranean 1 US10000993 Multi-gauge wrap wire subterranean 2 US10000993 Multi-gauge wrap wire subterranean 3
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Abstract

A wire cross-sectional shape for a wire wrap screen provides a primary and secondary gap with a contained circumferential volume in between. The secondary gap extends screen life by taking the place of the primary gap if erosion opens the primary gap and lets the larger solids get past. The closed space between the primary and secondary gaps also has the effect of reducing velocity due to the enlarged volume before the secondary gap is reached while also creating turbulence between the gaps to slow the fluid velocity to protect the secondary gap. All or parts of the wire outer surface can optionally be coated to extend service life.

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Claims

1. A wire cross-sectional shape for a wire wrap screen wire defining a first and second filtration gaps on an outer and inner faces thereof on the adjacent windings on a support structure, wherein at least one flow space is defined between said filtration gaps that is wider than said gaps at said inner and outer faces; said screen comprises different adjacent wires having inverted cross-sectional shapes.

2. The wire of claim 1, wherein: said flow space is defined by opposed flat surfaces between adjacent windings.

3. The wire of claim 2, wherein: said flat surfaces are parallel.

4. The wire of claim 1, wherein: a width of said gaps changes in response to heat.

5. The wire of claim 1, wherein: at least a part of said outer face or said flow space is coated to resist erosion.

6. The wire of claim 1, wherein: said windings are a continuous spiral defining a continuous spiral flow space.

7. The wire of claim 1, wherein: said flow space is configured to change the flow direction between said first and second filtration gaps at least once.

8. The wire of claim 7, wherein: said flow space is configured to change the flow direction between said first and second filtration gaps more than once.

9. The wire of claim 7, wherein: said second filtration gap has a predetermined height, said height defines a filtering dimension despite an inlet or an outlet erosion at said second filtration gap.

10. A method of screening out produced solids from a subterranean formation, comprising: winding a pair of adjacent wires having inverted cross-sectional shapes on a base pipe such that spaced apart filtration gaps adjacent an inner and outer surfaces of windings of said wire are connected by a flow space that is wider than said filtration gaps at said inner and outer surfaces; locating said base pipe at a subterranean location; taking fluids through said gaps from a surrounding formation.

11. The method of claim 10, comprising: reducing fluid velocity with the shape of said flow space.

12. The method of claim 10, comprising: providing flat or arcuate surfaces to define said flow space.

13. The method of claim 10, comprising: providing opposed parallel flat surfaces or opposed flat surfaces that define a V-shape.

14. The method of claim 10, comprising: coating at least a portion of said wire to control erosion.

15. The method of claim 10, comprising: changing the size of said filtration gaps by using a material for said wire that responds to thermal input at the subterranean location.

16. The method of claim 10, comprising: changing the flow direction in said flow space at least once.

17. The method of claim 10, comprising: providing a depth to said filtration gap near said inner surface such that erosion at an inlet or an outlet of said filtration gap near said inner surface can occur while still maintaining filtration capability of said gap near said inner surface.

18. A wire cross-sectional shape for a wire wrap screen wire defining a first and second filtration gaps on an outer and inner faces thereof on the adjacent windings on a support structure, wherein at least one flow space is defined between said filtration gaps that is wider than said gaps at said inner and outer faces; said flow space is configured to change the flow direction between said first and second filtration gaps at least once; said cross-sectional shape of said wire is T-shaped and adjacent wires wound together define said first and second filtration gaps where the orientation of said T-shapes in said adjacent wire windings is inverted.

19. The wire of claim 18, wherein: said second filtration gap has a predetermined height, said height defines a filtering dimension despite an inlet or an outlet erosion at said second filtration gap.

20. A method of screening out produced solids from a subterranean formation, comprising: winding a wire on a base pipe such that spaced apart filtration gaps adjacent an inner and outer surfaces of windings of said wire are connected by a flow space that is wider than said filtration gaps at said inner and outer surfaces; locating said base pipe at a subterranean location; taking fluids through said gaps from a surrounding formation; winding two adjacent wires with a T-shape cross-section where one T-shape is inverted with respect to an adjacent cross-section T-shape; defining said flow space between said T-shaped adjacent cross-sections.

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Claim Tree

  • 1
    1. A wire cross-sectional shape for a wire wrap screen wire defining a first and second filtration gaps on an outer and inner faces thereof on the adjacent windings on a support structure, wherein
    • at least one flow space is defined between said filtration gaps that is wider than said gaps at said inner and outer faces; said screen comprises
    • 2. The wire of claim 1, wherein
      • : said flow space is defined by opposed flat surfaces between adjacent windings.
    • 4. The wire of claim 1, wherein
      • : a width of said gaps changes in response to heat.
    • 5. The wire of claim 1, wherein
      • : at least a part of said outer face or said flow space is coated to resist erosion.
    • 6. The wire of claim 1, wherein
      • : said windings are a continuous spiral defining a continuous spiral flow space.
    • 7. The wire of claim 1, wherein
      • : said flow space is configured to change the flow direction between said first and second filtration gaps at least once.
  • 10
    10. A method of screening out produced solids from a subterranean formation, comprising:
    • winding a pair of adjacent wires having inverted cross-sectional shapes on a base pipe such that spaced apart filtration gaps adjacent an inner and outer surfaces of windings of said wire are connected by a flow space that is wider than said filtration gaps at said inner and outer surfaces
    • locating said base pipe at a subterranean location
    • taking fluids through said gaps from a surrounding formation.
    • 11. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • reducing fluid velocity with the shape of said flow space.
    • 12. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • providing flat or arcuate surfaces to define said flow space.
    • 13. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • providing opposed parallel flat surfaces or opposed flat surfaces that define a V-shape.
    • 14. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • coating at least a portion of said wire to control erosion.
    • 15. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • changing the size of said filtration gaps by using a material for said wire that responds to thermal input at the subterranean location.
    • 16. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • changing the flow direction in said flow space at least once.
    • 17. The method of claim 10, comprising:
      • providing a depth to said filtration gap near said inner surface such that erosion at an inlet or an outlet of said filtration gap near said inner surface can occur while still maintaining filtration capability of said gap near said inner surface.
  • 18
    18. A wire cross-sectional shape for a wire wrap screen wire defining a first and second filtration gaps on an outer and inner faces thereof on the adjacent windings on a support structure, wherein
    • at least one flow space is defined between said filtration gaps that is wider than said gaps at said inner and outer faces; said flow space is configured to change the flow direction between said first and second filtration gaps at least once; said cross-sectional shape of said wire is T-shaped and adjacent wires wound together define said first and second filtration gaps where the orientation of said T-shapes in said adjacent wire windings is inverted.
    • 19. The wire of claim 18, wherein
      • : said second filtration gap has a predetermined height, said height defines a filtering dimension despite an inlet or an outlet erosion at said second filtration gap.
  • 20
    20. A method of screening out produced solids from a subterranean formation, comprising:
    • winding a wire on a base pipe such that spaced apart filtration gaps adjacent an inner and outer surfaces of windings of said wire are connected by a flow space that is wider than said filtration gaps at said inner and outer surfaces
    • locating said base pipe at a subterranean location
    • taking fluids through said gaps from a surrounding formation
    • winding two adjacent wires with a T-shape cross-section where one T-shape is inverted with respect to an adjacent cross-section T-shape
    • defining said flow space between said T-shaped adjacent cross-sections.
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Description

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The field of the invention is wire wrap screens for subterranean use and more particularly where the wire section presents dual gaps with a velocity containment feature in between.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Screens are employed in completions to retain solids produced with the desired hydrocarbons. There are many styles for such screens but a popular design is commonly known as a wire wrap screen. The design of such a screen involves using a perforated base pipe and securing axially oriented mounting rods to the exterior of the base pipe. The wire is then helically wrapped over the mounting rods and secured to them at each intersection. The spacing between adjacent windings determines the particle size that is allowed to get through the screen. Sometimes punched openings are provided in outer jackets that cover over the wire wrap to protect the screen during running in.

Many optimizations of the performance of such screens have been attempted in the past. Some of these have focused on the cross-sectional shape of the wire with an eye toward keeping the manufacturing process reliable while attempting to control the flow direction for the stated purposes of enhancing throughput or reliability of operation. One issue that affects such screens is the potential for erosion from high velocity fluids that entrain produced solids. Some designs take a triangular cross-section for the wrapped wire and overlay exterior filtering layers for protection as in U.S. Pat. No. 8,701,757. Another design illustrated in US 20100258300 uses a round section for the wrap wire and varying spacing between the windings along the length of the screen. WO 2010143060 shows triangular or near trapezoidal shapes for wire cross-section with the near trapezoidal formed from taking a triangular shape and trimming one of the angles back to an arc shape. Also of interest regarding the above-mentioned wire cross-sectional shapes are the following references: US 2013/0092391 (note paragraph 36 noting that the wire shape can control flux in the screen); US 2010/0224359 (triangular with a rounded corner or trapezoidal); U.S. Pat. No. 7,188,687 (keystone shaped cross-section); U.S. Pat. No. 8,267,169 (FIGS. 3 and 4 showing triangular with rounded outer face or diamond or arrowhead shapes for the wire section); U.S. Pat. No. 8,291,971 (triangular); US 2014/0158295 (triangular with outer surface coating in FIG. 14B); U.S. Pat. No. 8,267,169 (triangular with rounded outer surface in FIG. 8); US 2005/0082060 (triangular in FIG. 7) and U.S. Pat. No. 7,273,106 (triangular in FIG. 11).

What is common to all these designs is that regardless of the shape employed for the wire cross-section, there is but a single gap between windings such that when erosion enlarges this gap the larger particles will get through and the base pipe underneath will also be exposed to erosive effects of high velocity fluids with entrained solids. The present invention seeks to improve the existing designs by offering the spacing that defines the size of the particles screened out in duplicate so that the sizing capability for excluded solids remains if one of the spacings is enlarged by erosive effects. Furthermore the backup spacing is further protected from erosive effects of high velocity fluids by virtue of the enclosed circumferential space between the outer and inner gaps because the enlarged volume between the inner and outer gaps reduces fluid velocity by the turbulence that is created to further protect the inner gap of the wire wrap and add longevity to the screen in subterranean environments. The enlarged volume area can be geometrically designed to move the erosion from the primary or secondary gap to an inner sacrificial area that does not compromise sand control. These and other aspects of the present invention will be more readily understood by those skilled in the art from a review of the detailed description and the associated drawings while recognizing that the full scope of the invention is to be determined by the appended claims.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A wire cross-sectional shape for a wire wrap screen provides a primary and secondary gap with a contained circumferential volume in between. The secondary gap extends screen life by taking the place of the primary gap if erosion opens the primary gap and lets the larger solids get past. The closed space between the primary and secondary gaps also has the effect of reducing velocity due to the enlarged volume before the secondary gap is reached while also creating turbulence between the gaps to slow the fluid velocity to protect the secondary gap. All or parts of the wire outer surface can optionally be coated to extend service life.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of adjacent windings of wire wrap screen showing the general I-beam cross-sectional shape;

FIG. 2 is a section view of another embodiment where the section has the appearance of mirror image homes with sloped roofs and adjacent peaks;

FIG. 3 is a section view of another embodiment where the section is of dual T-shaped wire where one wire is an inverted T shape and the adjacent is a right side up T-shape;

FIG. 4 is another alternative design where the passage between inner and outer face gaps makes several turns.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

FIG. 1 shows in perspective two windings as they would be positioned on a wire wrap screen that is not shown. The windings 10 and 12 define a primary gap 14 and a spaced secondary gap 16. In between, there are facing arcuate surfaces 18 and 20. Flow through the screen progresses from gap 14 to gap 16 and through openings 24 in base pipe 22. The flow in production mode is in the direction of arrow 26. The cross-sectional shape is akin to an I-beam with a circular web. However, a straight web to make the cross-section more akin to a structural I-beam shape is also contemplated. A few support rods 28 and 30 that run axially on the base pipe 22 and are secured with tack welds 32 and 34 are illustrated for reference while those skilled in the art will recognize that additional rod can be used to create the needed structural strength for the assembly. Equipment to continuously wind the windings such as 10 and 12 is also known which also applies the weld or other attachment method to the rods 28 and 30 as the windings make contact in a continuous process. Preferably the gaps 14 and 16 are identical but they can also be different with 14 being larger 16 or 16 being larger than 14. Along the screen length the preferred pitch is constant although gaps 14 or 16 that change along the length of the screen are also contemplated. A coating 36 can be applied to an outer face 38 and if desired the coating can be wrapped around into the rounded circumferential or annular space defined between curved surfaces 18 and 20 for each of the windings that make up the screen or for less than all of the windings, if desired. The coating has the objective of protecting the windings 12 and 14 from the effects of high fluid velocity. Also along those lines the winding material can be made from a hard metal or a composite or a shape memory alloy. The gaps 14 and 16 can change as between the time of manufacturing and when placed in service if for example a shape memory alloy is used. The gaps can be manufactured at a larger dimension that can close up as the transition temperature is reached if the windings are from a shape memory alloy.

Those skilled in the art will readily appreciate the differences from known designs. The wire shape creates a primary and a secondary gap so that screening can continue even if there is wear of parts of the primary gap without allowing larger particulates to get through as the secondary gap is still in service to stop such particles. The erosive effects of high fluid velocity are attenuated in two ways. First, the enlargement of the flow area after passing through gap 14 and before reaching gap 16 tends to slow the fluid velocity as does the turbulence that is created due to the change and the enlargement of the flow area between the gaps. Additionally, the enlarged space between the gaps can collect solids that would not have passed through gap 14 but for it wearing during service. Of course if there is a surrounding gravel pack in the annular space around the windings 10 and 12 solids can also accumulate there by design. The provision of multiple gaps provides for a longer service life for excluding solids down to the desired dimension. The enlarged gap creates turbulence and a velocity slowdown from the shape of the space and the fact that the flow area dimension rises either gradually or in a stepwise manner. While straight or arcuate surfaces 18 and 20 have been described, those surfaces can also be smooth or roughened to act more as a velocity deterrent.

Referring to FIG. 2 windings 50 and 52 are illustrated on base pipe 54 with the axially oriented support rods omitted for greater clarity. Here again are primary and secondary gaps 56 and 58 with the production flow in the direction of arrow 60. Surfaces 62 and 64 form a V-shape facing another V-shape made of surfaces 66 and 68. These surfaces can be rounded as they extend from a middle region 70 or 72. While regions 70 or 72 look like a narrow ridge, the width of such a ridge can be adjusted for addressing structural integrity issues. Optionally, pass through openings 74 can be provided at the ridges 70 or 72 or offset from those locations to address issues of structural integrity. Cross flow between windings 50 and 52 after gap 56 is contemplated and would occur in the direction of arrow 76. The cross flow ports such as 74 create further turbulence and reduce the erosion effects on gap 58. Such openings can also reduce the pressure drop across the screen for a given flow rate as compared with the same design without such openings. Beyond, this the recited variations described with regard to FIG. 1 are also intended to apply to the design shown in FIG. 2. Although spiral windings are contemplated independent adjacent rings of wire are also contemplated.

Referring to FIG. 3 two adjacent windings 80 and 82 that together define an outer gap 84 and an inner gap 86. The wires are preferably the same T-shape with one being upside down and the other being right side up. Together they define an enlarged flow space 88 that is wider than gaps 84 or 86. Gaps 84 and 86 can be the same size or one can be larger than the other in either order. Arrow 90 represents the direction of incoming fluid flow. Arrow 92 represents the continuation of that flow toward gap 86 and arrow 98 represents the exit flow through gap 86. On the way through gap 86 what erosion effects there will be will occur at corners 94 on wire 82 and corners 96 on wire 80. However, despite erosion at corners 94 and 96 there will still be an original dimension represented by arrow 100 that is the same as the gap 86 initially. Thus as the corners 94 and 96 are sacrificed the original gap 86 dimension is maintained. This extends the longevity of the wire wrap screen that is built according to the FIG. 3 embodiment. Other options as discussed with regard to FIGS. 1 and 2 are equally applicable to the FIGS. 3 and 4 embodiments.

FIG. 4 shows two adjacent wraps of a single wire design where the wraps are 110 and 112. Arrow 114 represents flow into the outer face gap 116. Circle 118 is intended to schematically illustrate the size of the gap 116 and to show that it has some depth in the direction of flow indicated by arrow 114. Similarly, circle 120 is intended to show that the inner surface gap 122 has a depth to it as well. In between gaps 116 and 122 there is a tortuous path where the flow is forced to make at two turns after entering in the direction of arrow 114. Some of the flow is turned by surface 124 while the flow pattern is reoriented by surface 126 either of which can be a continuous arc or multiple adjacent flat or curved surfaces that have the result of preferable shooting the flow through gap 122 as close as possible to the skewed orientation of the gap 122 to minimize erosion. Even if erosion removes some of the wire at locations 126 or 128 the effective dimension of the gap 122 is retained as there is a height to the gap between locations 126 and 128 that continues to remain the same despite the onset of erosion at 126 or 128.

The above description is illustrative of the preferred embodiment and many modifications may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the invention whose scope is to be determined from the literal and equivalent scope of the claims below:

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Patent Valuation

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22.0/100 Score

Market Attractiveness

It shows from an IP point of view how many competitors are active and innovations are made in the different technical fields of the company. On a company level, the market attractiveness is often also an indicator of how diversified a company is. Here we look into the commercial relevance of the market.

38.0/100 Score

Market Coverage

It shows the sizes of the market that is covered with the IP and in how many countries the IP guarantees protection. It reflects a market size that is potentially addressable with the invented technology/formulation with a legal protection which also includes a freedom to operate. Here we look into the size of the impacted market.

73.41/100 Score

Technology Quality

It shows the degree of innovation that can be derived from a company’s IP. Here we look into ease of detection, ability to design around and significance of the patented feature to the product/service.

92.0/100 Score

Assignee Score

It takes the R&D behavior of the company itself into account that results in IP. During the invention phase, larger companies are considered to assign a higher R&D budget on a certain technology field, these companies have a better influence on their market, on what is marketable and what might lead to a standard.

19.0/100 Score

Legal Score

It shows the legal strength of IP in terms of its degree of protecting effect. Here we look into claim scope, claim breadth, claim quality, stability and priority.

Citation

Patents Cited in This Cited by
Title Current Assignee Application Date Publication Date
Erosion Resistant Wellbore Screen and Associated Methods of Manufacture BILFINGER WATER TECHNOLOGIES, INC. 10 December 2012 12 June 2014
Bendable strain relief fluid filter liner, method and apparatus VAST HOLDINGS, LLC 16 May 2011 14 March 2013
System and method for controlling flow through a sand screen SCHLUMBERGER TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION 08 October 2012 18 April 2013
Plug protection system and method BAKER HUGHES INCORPORATED 15 August 2008 19 November 2009
Well Screen Assembly With Multi-Gage Wire Wrapped Layer HALLIBURTON ENERGY SERVICES, INC. 08 April 2009 14 October 2010
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US10000993 Multi-gauge wrap wire subterranean 1 US10000993 Multi-gauge wrap wire subterranean 2 US10000993 Multi-gauge wrap wire subterranean 3