Analyzing Water-Based Oil & Gas Fracturing Fluids
Chandler Engineering’s Model 5600 Shear History Simulator (SHS) system greatly simplifies the process of preparing and loading water-based fracturing fluids dynamically into rotational viscometers for testing. The company says that the simulator — which consists of a pressurized fluid reservoir, two injection pumps and three capillaries — works by:
- Fluid is pumped through the capillaries at various rates and durations to simulate pumping conditions experienced during fracture simulation treatments.
- A valve panel with a graphical representation of flow paths allows users to configure the instrument to simulate a broad range of well conditions.
- The process begins with a gel-based fluid that is placed into a pressurized supply reservoir that delivers fluid to an injection pump.
- The system is equipped with easy connecting couplings and flexible hoses.
- Pressure is applied to the reservoir using a panel-mounted air regulator.
- A high-pressure, corrosion-resistant, stainless steel triplex injection pump driven by a gear motor and controlled by a frequency drive controller delivers 0 to 100 ml/min of fluid, while a second stainless steel pump delivers 0-9.99 ml/min of crosslinker additive.
- An optional sample vessel is available for use with particle-laden crosslinker additives.
- The two fluids are combined in a micro-volume mixing tee, which flows directly into a multi-element kinetic mixer for thorough homogenization.
- The combined fluids then travel through the series of capillaries.
- Using selector valves on the front panel, the flow path can be configured between one, two or three capillary sections.
- Pressure transducers located at the entrance and exit of each capillary accurately monitor fluid pressures between capillaries.
- Digital indicators display each pressure on the front panel.
- The system can be operated manually as a stand-alone unit or run using Chandler’s SHS software, which monitors and records all measured parameters such as pump rate and pressure.