Patents by Inventor James N. McCoy

James N. McCoy has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 10724356
    Abstract: A downhole separator performs the function of removing gas from liquids before the liquids enter the well pump. The formation fluid enters into a first, lower, chamber, of the separator and exits through channels to helical passageways on the exterior of the separator body. A shroud surrounds the separator body to serve as an outer wall of the helical passageways. Spiraling movement of the fluid forces the heavier liquids outward and causes separation of the lighter gas. The liquids and gas are ejected from the top of the separator body. The separated liquids drain downward by gravity pull to a liquid reservoir. Liquids in the reservoir are driven upward and flow through channels on the exterior of the separator body into a second, upper chamber, in the separator body which is coupled by tubing to the inlet of the pump.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 28, 2020
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Publication number: 20200157934
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are widely used for the bulk storage of petroleum products, in particular, crude oil. The caverns are accessed through a casing in a borehole down to the cavern. The lower end of the casing opens into an upper region of the cavern termed the chimney. The chimney provides a transition from the casing into the cavern body. The invention presents a process of injecting a gas into the well while measuring the gas pressure and optionally measuring the volume of injected gas. The gas drives down an interface between the gas and hydrocarbon liquid. By monitoring the rate of change of the gas pressure, and detecting a sudden decrease in the rate of change, it can be determined when the interface has been driven down to the region immediately below the bottom of the casing at the upper end of the chimney.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 14, 2020
    Publication date: May 21, 2020
    Inventors: James N. McCoy, Orvel L. Rowlan
  • Publication number: 20200157933
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are widely used for the bulk storage of petroleum products, in particular, crude oil. The caverns are accessed through a casing in a borehole down to the cavern. The lower end of the casing opens into an upper region of the cavern termed the chimney. The chimney provides a transition from the casing into the cavern body. The invention presents a process of injecting a gas into the well while measuring the gas pressure and optionally measuring the volume of injected gas. The gas drives down an interface between the gas and hydrocarbon liquid. By monitoring the rate of change of the gas pressure, and detecting a sudden decrease in the rate of change, it can be determined when the interface has been driven down to the region immediately below the bottom of the casing at the upper end of the chimney.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 14, 2020
    Publication date: May 21, 2020
    Inventors: James N. McCoy, Orvel L. Rowlan
  • Publication number: 20200080408
    Abstract: A downhole separator performs the function of removing gas from liquids before the liquids enter the well pump. The formation fluid enters into a first, lower, chamber, of the separator and exits through channels to helical passageways on the exterior of the separator body. A shroud surrounds the separator body to serve as an outer wall of the helical passageways. Spiraling movement of the fluid forces the heavier liquids outward and causes separation of the lighter gas. The liquids and gas are ejected from the top of the separator body. The separated liquids drain downward by gravity pull to a liquid reservoir. Liquids in the reservoir are driven upward and flow through channels on the exterior of the separator body into a second, upper chamber, in the separator body which is coupled by tubing to the inlet of the pump.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 7, 2018
    Publication date: March 12, 2020
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 10570725
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are widely used for the bulk storage of petroleum products, in particular, crude oil. The caverns are accessed through a casing in a borehole down to the cavern. The lower end of the casing opens into an upper region of the cavern termed the chimney. The chimney provides a transition from the casing into the cavern body. The invention presents a process of injecting a gas into the well while measuring the gas pressure and optionally measuring the volume of injected gas. The gas drives down an interface between the gas and hydrocarbon liquid. By monitoring the rate of change of the gas pressure, and detecting a sudden decrease in the rate of change, it can be determined when the interface has been driven down to the region immediately below the bottom of the casing at the upper end of the chimney.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2020
    Inventors: James N. McCoy, Orvel L. Rowlan
  • Patent number: 10323971
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are used for the bulk storage of hydrocarbon liquids, such as crude oil and gases, such as natural gas. The cavern is accessed through a bore hole which has casing and, for some bore holes, internal tubing with an annulus between the casing and tubing. The upper end of the cavern has a roughly cylindrical region termed the chimney. In order to check it for physical integrity, it is necessary to measure the profile of the chimney. This is also referred to as conducting a survey of the cavern. The cavern typically has hydrocarbon liquid above brine up to the surface. An inert gas can be injected above the hydrocarbon liquid to form an interface. The profile is conducted by driving the gas/liquid interface downward with gas pressure to a reference level determined by sequentially transmitting acoustic pulses to locate the reference level. Gas is injected to increase the pressure by a predetermined value and thereby drive down the interface by a known distance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2017
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2019
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Publication number: 20180355713
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are widely used for the bulk storage of petroleum products, in particular, crude oil. These caverns can store millions of barrels of hydrocarbon liquid safely for long periods of time at low cost. The caverns are accessed through a casing in a borehole down to the cavern. The lower end of the casing opens into an upper region of the cavern termed the chimney. The chimney provides a transition from the casing into the cavern body. The lower end of the casing has a structure termed a casing shoe which seals the earth formation around the casing from the interior of the chimney. The chimney region needs to be periodically inspected to determine if it is stable. The salt structure of the cavern is subject to erosion and collapse of sections of the wall. Deterioration of the physical structure of the chimney can also lead to the opening of cracks which may allow the stored liquid to leak into the formations around the casing and the chimney.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 13, 2017
    Publication date: December 13, 2018
    Inventors: James N. McCoy, Orvel L. Rowlan
  • Patent number: 10060247
    Abstract: A system and method for real-time data acquisition and presentation of force, position, load, pressures, and movement within a subterranean well pumping system, such as an oil well. Data is gathered using sensors attached to a surface level pump drive and wellhead system. Well structural data and well production data are combined therewith to generate a real-time display of down-hole well operation, including animated graphics of the pump operation, including pump movement, rod and tubing stretch, fluid movement, gas compression, system forces, and fluid pressures. Liquid levels are tested using an acoustic liquid level instrument, and incorporated to improve well performance analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2018
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9975701
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are used for the bulk storage of hydrocarbon liquids, such as crude oil and gases. The caverns are typically formed in salt formations by dissolving the salt and removing it with a flow of water. The cavern is accessed through a bore hole which has casing and internal tubing with an annulus between the casing and tubing. Some cavern bore holes may have casing, but no tubing. The cavern typically has hydrocarbon liquid above brine with an inert gas above the hydrocarbon liquid. In order to use the cavern, and periodically check it for physical integrity, it is necessary to test the cavern to determine if there is leakage from the cavern or the bore hole. The interface of the hydrocarbon liquid and overriding gas is moved downward by injecting gas into the annulus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2018
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9896927
    Abstract: A method for real-time data acquisition and presentation of force, position, load, pressures, and movement within a subterranean well pumping system, such as an oil well. Data is gathered using sensors attached to a surface level pump drive and wellhead system. Well structural data and well production data are combined therewith to generate a real-time display of down-hole well operation, including animated graphics of the pump operation, including pump movement, rod and tubing stretch, fluid movement, gas compression, system forces, and fluid pressures. Liquid levels are tested using an acoustic liquid level instrument, and incorporated to improve well performance analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9790779
    Abstract: An oil and gas well gas separator that operates in conjunction with an isolation means and a tail pipe to reduce the pressure gradient of the well fluids flowing up the tailpipe, to thereby reduce the well's producing bottom hole pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 25, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 17, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Publication number: 20170234713
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are used for the bulk storage of hydrocarbon liquids, such as crude oil and gases, such as natural gas. The cavern is accessed through a bore hole which has casing and, for some bore holes, internal tubing with an annulus between the casing and tubing. The upper end of the cavern has a roughly cylindrical region termed the chimney. In order to check it for physical integrity, it is necessary to measure the profile of the chimney. This is also referred to as conducting a survey of the cavern. The cavern typically has hydrocarbon liquid above brine up to the surface. An inert gas can be injected above the hydrocarbon liquid to form an interface. The profile is conducted by driving the gas/liquid interface downward with gas pressure to a reference level determined by sequentially transmitting acoustic pulses to locate the reference level. Gas is injected to increase the pressure by a predetermined value and thereby drive down the interface by a known distance.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2017
    Publication date: August 17, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Publication number: 20170159422
    Abstract: A system and method for real-time data acquisition and presentation of force, position, load, pressures, and movement within a subterranean well pumping system, such as an oil well. Data is gathered using sensors attached to a surface level pump drive and wellhead system. Well structural data and well production data are combined therewith to generate a real-time display of down-hole well operation, including animated graphics of the pump operation, including pump movement, rod and tubing stretch, fluid movement, gas compression, system forces, and fluid pressures. Liquid levels are tested using an acoustic liquid level instrument, and incorporated to improve well performance analysis.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 2, 2017
    Publication date: June 8, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9669997
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are used for the bulk storage of hydrocarbon liquids, such as crude oil and gases, such as natural gas. The cavern is accessed through a bore hole which has casing and, for some bore holes, internal tubing with an annulus between the casing and tubing. The upper end of the cavern has a roughly cylindrical region termed the chimney. In order to check it for physical integrity, it is necessary to measure the profile of the chimney. This is also referred to as conducting a survey of the cavern. The cavern typically has hydrocarbon liquid above brine up to the surface. An inert gas can be injected above the hydrocarbon liquid to form an interface. The profile is conducted by driving the gas/liquid interface downward with gas pressure to a reference level determined by sequentially transmitting acoustic pulses to locate the reference level. Gas is injected to increase the pressure by a predetermined value and thereby drive down the interface by a known distance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9587481
    Abstract: A system and method for real-time data acquisition and presentation of force, position, load, pressures, and movement within a subterranean well pumping system, such as an oil well. Data is gathered using sensors attached to a surface level pump drive and wellhead system. Well structural data and well production data are combined therewith to generate a real-time display of down-hole well operation, including animated graphics of the pump operation, including pump movement, rod and tubing stretch, fluid movement, gas compression, system forces, and fluid pressures. Liquid levels are tested using an acoustic liquid level instrument, and incorporated to improve well performance analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9574435
    Abstract: A method for real-time data acquisition and presentation of force, position, load, pressures, and movement within a subterranean well pumping system, such as an oil well. Data is gathered using sensors attached to a surface level pump drive and wellhead system. Well structural data and well production data are combined therewith to generate a real-time display of down-hole well operation, including animated graphics of the pump operation, including pump movement, rod and tubing stretch, fluid movement, gas compression, system forces, and fluid pressures. Liquid levels are tested using an acoustic liquid level instrument, and incorporated to improve well performance analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9574442
    Abstract: A method for real-time data acquisition and presentation of force, position, load, pressures, and movement within a subterranean well pumping system, such as an oil well. Data is gathered using sensors attached to a surface level pump drive and wellhead system. Well structural data and well production data are combined therewith to generate a real-time display of down-hole well operation, including animated graphics of the pump operation, including pump movement, rod and tubing stretch, fluid movement, gas compression, system forces, and fluid pressures. Liquid levels are tested using an acoustic liquid level instrument, and incorporated to improve well performance analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2017
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Publication number: 20160313166
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are used for the bulk storage of hydrocarbon liquids, such as crude oil and gases, such as natural gas. The cavern is accessed through a bore hole which has casing and, for some bore holes, internal tubing with an annulus between the casing and tubing. The upper end of the cavern has a roughly cylindrical region termed the chimney. In order to check it for physical integrity, it is necessary to measure the profile of the chimney. This is also referred to as conducting a survey of the cavern. The cavern typically has hydrocarbon liquid above brine up to the surface. An inert gas can be injected above the hydrocarbon liquid to form an interface. The profile is conducted by driving the gas/liquid interface downward with gas pressure to a reference level determined by sequentially transmitting acoustic pulses to locate the reference level. Gas is injected to increase the pressure by a predetermined value and thereby drive down the interface by a known distance.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 25, 2015
    Publication date: October 27, 2016
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Publication number: 20160312606
    Abstract: Underground storage caverns are used for the bulk storage of hydrocarbon liquids, such as crude oil and gases. The caverns are typically formed in salt formations by dissolving the salt and removing it with a flow of water. The cavern is accessed through a bore hole which has casing and internal tubing with an annulus between the casing and tubing. Some cavern bore holes may have casing, but no tubing. The cavern typically has hydrocarbon liquid above brine with an inert gas above the hydrocarbon liquid. In order to use the cavern, and periodically check it for physical integrity, it is necessary to test the cavern to determine if there is leakage from the cavern or the bore hole. The interface of the hydrocarbon liquid and overriding gas is moved downward by injecting gas into the annulus.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 25, 2015
    Publication date: October 27, 2016
    Inventor: James N. McCoy
  • Patent number: 9366127
    Abstract: An oil well gas separator that includes a seating nipple for a downhole pump. An inner and outer barrel define a fluid passage and a separation annulus with the well casing. A separated well liquid passage is directly connected to the pump inlet to reduce dissolution of gas from the separated liquid. An isolation means is provided to isolate the separation annulus from the well casing fluids.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 14, 2016
    Inventor: James N. McCoy