Submerged Well Patents (Class 166/335)
  • Patent number: 9640829
    Abstract: A heater includes a heater housing extending along a heater axis; a fuel cell stack assembly disposed within the heater housing and having a plurality of fuel cells which convert chemical energy from a fuel into heat and electricity through a chemical reaction with an oxidizing agent; an electric resistive heating element disposed within the heater housing and electrically connected to the fuel cell stack assembly; and a first thermal switch located between the fuel cell stack assembly and the electric resistive heating element. The first thermal switch is closed to place the fuel cell stack assembly in electrical communication with the electric resistive heating element when the fuel cell stack assembly is electrochemically active and is open to prevent electrical communication between the fuel cell stack assembly and the electric resistive heating element when the fuel cell stack assembly is not electrochemically active.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 6, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 2, 2017
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Giulio A. Ricci-Ottati, Bernhard A. Fischer, Thomas W. Silvis, Kurtis F. Weess
  • Patent number: 9528340
    Abstract: A subsea blowout preventer control system has horizontally oriented solenoid valve housings. Solenoid valves mounted within each of the solenoid valve housings are electrically controlled to selectively provide a hydraulic pilot signal to a hydraulic valve. A vertically extending central chamber contains a dielectric liquid and extends alongside the solenoid valve housings. A communication tube for each solenoid valve housing has an open upper end within the central chamber adjacent an upper end of the central chamber. Each of the communication tubes has an open lower end extending into one of the solenoid valve housings for communicating dielectric liquid in the central chamber with an interior of each of the solenoid valve housings. A separate drain line mounted to each of the solenoid valve housings enables draining of one of the solenoid valve housings for maintenance without requiring draining of other of the solenoid valve housings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2016
    Assignee: Hydrill USA Distribution LLC
    Inventors: Thomas David Beales, Alexander McAuley, Zachary William Stewart, Daniel Carrera
  • Patent number: 9511831
    Abstract: An underwater mobile inspection apparatus is capable of inspecting a subsea pipeline (inspection object) while cruising. The underwater mobile inspection apparatus includes: a cruising body configured to submerge under water and cruise along the inspection object in such a manner as not to come into contact with the subsea pipeline; a first movable arm provided on the cruising body; an inspection tool unit for use in inspecting the subsea pipeline, the inspection tool unit being provided on the first movable arm; and a controller configured to, when the cruising body cruises along the subsea pipeline in such a manner as not to come into contact with the subsea pipeline, operate the first movable arm to move the inspection tool unit, such that a positional relationship of the inspection tool unit with the subsea pipeline becomes a predetermined target positional relationship.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 6, 2016
    Assignee: KAWASAKI JUKOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Akira Kimura, Noriyuki Okaya, Kazuya Sumino, Minehiko Mukaida, Hiroaki Kagaya, Masanori Hamamatsu, Akiyoshi Saiki, Tetsuya Kubota, Masayuki Enomoto
  • Patent number: 9243462
    Abstract: A subsea fluid connector is disclosed. The body of the connector has a first portion and a connection profile portion, a first port through an outer surface of the first portion, a plurality of openings through an outer surface of the connection profile portion, and a plurality of fluid passages through the body and coupled between the first port and the plurality of openings. The subsea fluid connector may have a first fluid flow path extending through the plurality of fluid passages between the first port through the outer surface of the first portion and the plurality of openings through the outer surface of the connection profile portion, and a second fluid flow path extending through a fluid passage between a second port through the outer surface of the first portion and a third port through the outer surface of the connection profile portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2016
    Assignee: BP Corporation North America Inc.
    Inventors: Luis Gutierrez, Shane Wells, Daniel Gutierrez, James Edward Fuselier
  • Patent number: 9234614
    Abstract: An assembly for coupling a pair of double-walled tubes is provided. The assembly includes a pair of flanges disposed in an opposing relation to each other and mutually coupled thereto. Each flange defines a central opening that is configured to correspond with a similar opening on an opposing flange. The central openings of the coupled flanges are configured to communicate a first fluid. The assembly further includes an annular hub portion extending axially away from each of the flanges. The annular hub portion is disposed about the central opening of the respective flange. The assembly further includes a lip portion depending frustoconically from the hub portion. The flange, the hub portion, and the lip portion define a conduit extending therethrough. The conduits are configured to allow passage of a second fluid therethrough.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 12, 2016
    Assignee: Electro-Motive Diesel, Inc.
    Inventor: Nicholas Denman Norris
  • Patent number: 9157302
    Abstract: A technique facilitates the pumping of fluids in a subsea environment. A pumping system is formed by combining a submersible pump with a permanent magnet motor to power the submersible pump. The pumping system is positioned in cooperation with a subsea structure to improve the fluid flow and the functionality of the system in specific applications.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2015
    Assignee: Schlumberger Technology Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin T. Scarsdale, Chris McLeod
  • Publication number: 20150136407
    Abstract: A system and method is provided for converting a drilling rig between conventional hydrostatic pressure drilling and managed pressure drilling or underbalanced drilling using a docking station housing mounted on a marine riser or bell nipple. This docking station housing may be positioned above the surface of the water. When a removable rotating control device is remotely hydraulically latched with the docking station housing, the system and method allows for interactive lubrication and cooling of the rotating control device, as needed, along with a supply of fluid for use with active seals.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 26, 2015
    Publication date: May 21, 2015
    Applicant: Weatherford/Lamb, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas F. BAILEY, Don M. Hannegan, James W. Chambers, Danny W. Wagoner
  • Publication number: 20150136406
    Abstract: A plug pulling device includes an elongated housing comprising a production tree connection interface, a shifting tool disposed within and along a substantial length the housing and comprising a distal end configured to couple to a tubing plug, and a seal disposed within the housing and formed around a portion of the shifting tool. The seal isolates a first portion of the housing from a second portion of the housing. The second portion of the housing is adjacent to the production tree connection interface. The shifting tool is configured to move partially in and out of the first portion of the housing when there is a pressure differential between the first portion of the housing and an environment external to the first portion of the housing.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 18, 2013
    Publication date: May 21, 2015
    Applicant: CHEVRON U.S.A. INC.
    Inventors: Mauricio Baez, Raymond A. Stawaisz, John Lloyd Busby, Brian Saucier, Stephen Gregory Pierce, Walter Warren Weaver
  • Patent number: 9033053
    Abstract: A method and a device are for extending the lifetime of a Christmas tree. The Christmas tree is provided with at least a first high-pressure hydraulic valve pack, a first low-pressure hydraulic valve pack or a first chemical valve pack, and the Christmas tree is arranged to be connectable to an umbilical, which comprises at least electrical power or control cables, hydraulic tubes or chemical tubes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Assignee: Subsea Solutions AS
    Inventor: Torfinn Borsheim
  • Publication number: 20150122503
    Abstract: A free-standing riser system connects a subsea source to a surface structure. The system includes a concentric free-standing riser comprising inner and outer risers defining an annulus there between. A lower end of the riser is fluidly coupled to the subsea source through a lower riser assembly (LRA) and one or more subsea flexible conduits. An upper end of the riser is connected to a buoyancy assembly and the surface structure through an upper riser assembly (URA) and one or more upper flexible conduits, the riser also mechanically connected to a buoyancy assembly that applies upward tension to the riser. The riser may be insulated for flow assurance, either by a flow assurance fluid in the annulus, insulation of the outside of the outer riser, or both. The system may include a hydrate inhibition system and/or a subsea dispersant system. The surface structure may be dynamically positioned.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 7, 2015
    Publication date: May 7, 2015
    Inventors: Roy Shilling, Paul W. Gulgowski, Jr., Philip D. Maule, Kevin Kennelley, Walter Greene, Robert W. Franklin, Vicki Corso, Tony Oldfield, Adam L. Ballard, Graeme Steele, David E. Wilkinson, Ricky Thethi, Chau Nguyen, Steve Hatton
  • Publication number: 20150114655
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a method for preventing gas hydrates formation in BOP fluids in deep water well operations that includes the step of adding at least 28% glycol by volume to a BOP fluid, whereby the hydrate phase equilibrium line shifts to the point where the operating conditions will not form a hydrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 28, 2014
    Publication date: April 30, 2015
    Inventors: Aaron Barr, John Kozicz
  • Publication number: 20150114661
    Abstract: A casing head assembly for landing on a stem head of a floating structure can include a stem head adapter assembly that includes a ring shaped stem head adapter plate. A solid upper ring is spaced axially above the stem head adapter plate, defining an adapter gap between the upper ring and the stem head adapter plate. At least one load cell can have a first end that is supported by the stem head adapter plate and a second end that engages the upper ring. At least one piston assembly is selectively secured to the upper ring. The casing head assembly also includes a casing head landed on, and secured to, the upper ring of the stem head adapter assembly. The load cell is selectively constrained between the upper ring and the stem head adapter plate by a load on the casing head.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 30, 2014
    Publication date: April 30, 2015
    Inventors: Mark Anthony McGilvray, JR., Alfred Olvera, Gajanan B. Hegde, Keith M. Adams
  • Publication number: 20150096758
    Abstract: This disclosure includes manifolds, subsea valve modules, and related methods. Some manifolds and/or subsea valve modules include one or more inlets, each configured to receive hydraulic fluid from a fluid source, one or more outlets, each in selective fluid communication with at least one of the inlets, and one or more subsea valve assemblies, each configured to selectively control hydraulic fluid communication from at least one of the inlets to at least one of the outlets, where at least one of the outlets is configured to be in fluid communication with an actuation port of the hydraulically actuated device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 27, 2014
    Publication date: April 9, 2015
    Inventor: Guy Robert Babbitt
  • Publication number: 20150090459
    Abstract: An embodiment of a tool for clearing a deposit within a fluid flowline, including a body having a central axis, a first end, a second end opposite the first end, and a radially outer surface extending axially from the first end of the second end. In addition, the tool includes a first energy element coupled to the first end, and an electrode extending radially from the radially outer surface of the body. The first energy element and the electrodes are each configured to emit energy to dissipate the deposit in the fluid flowline.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 19, 2014
    Publication date: April 2, 2015
    Applicant: BP Corporation North America Inc.
    Inventors: Jeremy David Cain, Charles Michael Scroggins
  • Publication number: 20150083429
    Abstract: A system and method include pumping drilling fluid through a drill string extended into a wellbore extending below the bottom of a body of water, out the bottom of the drill string and into the wellbore annulus. Fluid is discharged from the annulus into a riser and a discharge conduit. The riser is disposed above the top of the wellbore and extends to the water surface. The discharge conduit couples to the riser and includes a controllable fluid choke. A fluid return line is coupled to an outlet of the choke and extends to the water surface. Gas under pressure is pumped into the return line at a selected depth below the water surface. The controllable fluid choke may be operated to maintain a selected drilling fluid level in the riser, the selected fluid level being a selected distance below the water surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 29, 2013
    Publication date: March 26, 2015
    Inventors: Donald D. Reitsma, Ossama R. Sehsah, Yawan Couturier
  • Publication number: 20150075801
    Abstract: A stripper packer for sealing a tubular of a wellsite is provided. The stripper packer includes an extendable housing, a packer, and a sliding window. The extendable housing has a passage therethrough to receive the tubular, and includes a piston operatively connectable between an upper and a lower portion of the extendable housing for selective movement therebetween. The packer is positionable within the extendable housing and sealingly engageable with the tubular. The sliding window is slidably positionable in the passage of the extendable housing and engageable with the packer. The sliding window is movable with the piston in response to pressure whereby the packer is sealable with the tubing.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 13, 2013
    Publication date: March 19, 2015
    Applicant: NATIONAL OILWELL VARCO, L.P.
    Inventors: Richard Michael WARD, James Allen DOUTY, Jeffrey Thomas MELANCON, Douglas Avery WARE
  • Publication number: 20150075805
    Abstract: The invention in one of its aspects provides a connection apparatus for a subsea hydraulic circuit and method of use in a sampling application. The apparatus comprises a longitudinal body configured to be removably docked with a subsea hydraulic circuit receptacle. The body comprises a plurality of radial ports axially displaced along the body, and an axial bore accommodating a spool having at least one fluid barrier. The spool and fluid barrier are actuable to be axially moved in the bore to control axial flow paths along the bore between the plurality of radial ports. The apparatus may be configured as a sampling hot stab in an application to sampling a production fluid from a subsea hydrocarbon production system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 26, 2013
    Publication date: March 19, 2015
    Inventors: Ian Donald, John Reid
  • Publication number: 20150068758
    Abstract: A method of operating a system for handling an influx of gas into a marine riser during the drilling of a well bore includes the steps of operating a first riser closure apparatus to close the riser at a first point above a flow spool provided in the riser, there being a riser gas handling line extending from the riser at the flow spool to a riser gas handling manifold, operating a second riser closure apparatus to close the riser at a second point below the flow spool, pumping fluid into an inlet line which extends into the riser at a point above the second point but below the flow spool, and operating a choke provided in the riser gas handling manifold to maintain the pressure in the inlet line or the riser at a substantially constant pressure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 10, 2013
    Publication date: March 12, 2015
    Applicant: MANAGED PRESSURE OPERATIONS PTE LTD
    Inventors: Christian Leuchtenberg, Michael Chandra, Carlos Goncalves
  • Publication number: 20150060078
    Abstract: A method of forming a wellbore includes providing a drilling assembly comprising one or more lengths of casing and an axially retracting assembly having a first tubular; a second tubular at least partially disposed in the first tubular and axially fixed thereto; and a support member disposed in the second tubular and movable from a first axial position to a second axial position relative to the second tubular, wherein, in the first axial position, the support member maintains the second tubular axially fixed to the first tubular, and in the second axial position, allows the second tubular to move relative to the first tubular; and an earth removal member disposed below the axially retracting assembly. The method also includes rotating the earth removal member to form the wellbore; moving the support member to the second axial position; and reducing a length of the axially retracting assembly.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 23, 2014
    Publication date: March 5, 2015
    Inventors: Eric M. TWARDOWSKI, Jose A. TREVINO, Albert C. ODELL, II, Tuong Thanh LE, Wei Jake XU, Guy F. FEASEY
  • Patent number: 8955592
    Abstract: A grease delivery system for delivering grease to a location is provided. The grease delivery system comprises: a first grease reservoir having a first grease output and a first output device configured to output grease from the first grease reservoir; a second grease reservoir having a second grease output and a second output device configured to output grease from the second grease reservoir; and a common grease output for delivering grease to the location, wherein the common grease output is fluidly connected to the first and second grease outputs, wherein the system is configured to simultaneously output grease from the first and second grease reservoirs to the common grease output.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: Vetco Gray Controls Limited
    Inventors: Mark Organ, Peter Davey, Graeme Thomson
  • Publication number: 20150041142
    Abstract: A vertical oil storage system includes an oil tank for storing oil and water, an oil caisson coupled to the top of the oil tank, a water caisson coupled to the bottom of the oil tank, a containment saucer positioned and floating substantially at the interface between the oil and the water stored in the oil tank, a water pipe extending from an upper water sump in the center well to the water caisson, a water passageway extending from the center well to the water caisson, and an oil pipe extending front the topside facility to the oil caisson. A corresponding method to displace water with oil and to separate oil from displaced water in the vertical oil storage system includes loading oil from a topside facility into an oil caisson via an oil pipe, offloading water from water caisson into an upper water sump in a center well via a water pipe, and offloading water from the center well is a water passageway and discharging it back to open water via a water outlet at the keel of the platform.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 6, 2013
    Publication date: February 12, 2015
    Inventors: Jin Wang, Yong Luo
  • Publication number: 20150041123
    Abstract: Systems and methods for accessing and/or harvesting hydrocarbons from a wellbore. A method may include modeling a well to determine a length of a stimulation zone in the production interval, wherein the model is based, at least in part, on a reaction time for a stimulation process. Packers are placed in the well to fluidically isolate the stimulation zone from other zones in the well. The targeted zone is stimulated, such as by acid treatment. Hydrocarbons may be recovered from the stimulation zone.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 4, 2012
    Publication date: February 12, 2015
    Inventors: Andrey A. Troshko, James S. Brown, III, Chris E. Shuchart
  • Publication number: 20150041143
    Abstract: An apparatus for controlling the injection pressure of an aqueous polymer solution in a subsea oil wellhead, includes a linear pressure reducer in the form of a tube connected in series to the main injection line that is capable of absorbing the majority of the pressure drop and a choke that is capable of being regulated in order to enable a pressure control between 0 and 10 bar. Also, a process of offshore enhanced oil recovery by injection of an aqueous polymer solution uses the apparatus.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 22, 2014
    Publication date: February 12, 2015
    Inventors: Pascal Remy, Emmanuel Pich
  • Publication number: 20150027717
    Abstract: An apparatus, system and process for deployment of subsea drilling equipment through a moon pool of a drilling vessel is disclosed. The drilling equipment may include a subsea mudlift pump (MLP) that is configured to be deployed below the surface of the ocean and is adapted for conducting dual gradient drilling (DGD) operations. In the apparatus and process, the MLP may be suspended temporarily aboard the vessel by a holding mechanism. The MLP may be combined first with a lower marine riser package (LMRP) prior to suspension of the MLP and/or MLP/LMRP aboard the drilling vessel. An equipment combination, comprising at least a MLP and a LMRP, may be with a BOP, the mating occurring at a position below the surface of the ocean. In one aspect, the BOP may be separately deployed into the ocean, and then subsequently mated subsea with the LMRP and/or a MLP/LMRP combined equipment package.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 23, 2014
    Publication date: January 29, 2015
    Applicant: Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
    Inventors: Kai-tung Ma, James David Dowell, Dave Smith, Kenneth L. Smith
  • Patent number: 8939215
    Abstract: A gasless subsea accumulator having a series of opposing springs in two separate chambers defined by a central cross shaped member for translating force on a piston in the accumulator to dampen the movement of the piston. The body of the accumulator may be operably engaged to a bladder in fluid communication with one of the two chambers to provide additional dampening. The body may be vented through a port and have a port for controlling pressure on body through a pilot control circuit. The accumulator may be manually controlled by an ROV and operatively connected to a regulator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 27, 2015
    Assignee: The Subsea Company
    Inventor: Barry McMiles
  • Patent number: 8939212
    Abstract: A subsea cap method and system having a canister attached to a port in a subsea cap that is positioned on a subsea structure and materials contained within the canister for release through the port into the defined area beneath the subsea cap and around the open upper end of the subsea structure. That is, the materials treat the water inside the cap and may optionally also treat the water outside the cap. The canister can be attached to, or removed from, the subsea cap subsea without removing the subsea cap from its resting place on the subsea structure. The system can be deployed via an ROV, diver or other means. The positioning of the subsea cap on the subsea structure and the placement and active or passive release of the material through the port into the defined area provides a system that protects the subsea structure from such problems as falling debris, silt, corrosion and organic growth while saving valuable time and resources.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 27, 2015
    Inventor: Michael Dean Arning
  • Publication number: 20140374117
    Abstract: Improved systems and methods for installing, maintaining and controlling a self-standing riser (SSR). SSRs are installed using wire pulleys or weights to place the SSRs over a wellhead. A flow diverter, which may be incorporated into or separate from a buoyancy chamber, allowing diversion of flow both into and out of an SSR. Non-annular buoyancy chambers configured to receive a riser of an SSR through a slot of the buoyancy chamber.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 5, 2014
    Publication date: December 25, 2014
    Inventors: Geir Aune, Keith K. Millheim
  • Publication number: 20140367112
    Abstract: A device for collecting used sealing fluids/grease being used as sealing and lubricating medium between two objects such as risers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 22, 2012
    Publication date: December 18, 2014
    Applicant: Green Well Technology AS
    Inventor: Kjetil Sevaldsen
  • Publication number: 20140360729
    Abstract: A subsea electrical device has a penetrator extending through a housing for the connection of a motor lead cable supplying electric power or electric signals. The penetrator has a glass or glass-ceramic body sealed to the housing. A connector, such as a pin connector, extends through the glass or glass-ceramic body. The motor lead cable connects to one end of the connector while the other end of the connector allows for the transfer of the electric power or electric signals to the components within the housing. The glass or glass-ceramic body withstands the high pressure and harsh environment of the subsea atmosphere, allowing for the long term us of the electrical device without need for replacement due to failure of the penetrator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 6, 2014
    Publication date: December 11, 2014
    Inventor: Harald Benestad
  • Patent number: 8905141
    Abstract: A valve useable in an undersea apparatus for generating a force for closing a blowout preventer (BOP) based on a pressure difference between a low pressure recipient and ambient pressure, an apparatus including the valve and related methods are provided. The valve includes a valve body enclosing a chamber with an input port selectively connectable to an output port, and a chamber separating assembly configured to separate the chamber from a region of different pressure. The assembly includes (1) a backup plate having a first portion of a first diameter towards the chamber and a second portion of a second diameter larger than the first diameter, towards the region, and (2) an upper seat located between the first portion of the backup plate and the valve body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Assignee: Hydril USA Manufacturing LLC
    Inventor: Ryan Cheaney Gustafson
  • Publication number: 20140352971
    Abstract: A solenoid-operated valve of the kind that is used in a subsea control pod comprises a valve assembly (2) and a solenoid assembly (1). The valve assembly (2) comprising has fluid ports (P, S, T) for the receipt and delivery of hydraulic control fluid and a valve element (37, 38, 39) that is actuable between open and closed positions in order to control the flow of hydraulic control fluid between the fluid ports. The valve element (37, 38, 39) is actuable by an actuating member of the solenoid assembly (1). The solenoid chamber (A) is filled with oil and sealed against ingress of hydraulic control fluid from the valve chamber (36) and from the ingress of oil and/or seawater from the control pod. A movable pressure balancing device (30) is provided in the solenoid assembly (1) so as to ensure that the internal pressure of the oil in the solenoid chamber (A) and the external pressure of the oil in the control pod are balanced.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 5, 2012
    Publication date: December 4, 2014
    Applicant: Bifold Fluidpower Limited
    Inventor: James R. Renshaw
  • Publication number: 20140352972
    Abstract: A system for pulling a subsea structure includes an adapter configured to be mounted to an upper end of a subsea pile. In addition, the system includes an interface assembly fixably coupled to the adapter. The interface assembly includes a first channel configured to receive a flexible tension member and a first chuck disposed in the first channel. The tension assembly includes a second channel configured to receive the flexible tension member and a second chuck disposed in the second channel. Each chuck is configured to pivot about a horizontal axis between an unlocked position allowing the flexible tension member to move in a first axial direction and a locked position preventing the tension member from moving in a second axial direction that is opposite the first axial direction.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 2, 2014
    Publication date: December 4, 2014
    Inventors: Daniel Gutierrez, Luis J. Gutierrez
  • Publication number: 20140352973
    Abstract: A method for stimulating fluid flow in an upwardly oriented oilfield tubular (1, 12) comprises heating the tubular along at least part of its length to such a temperature that at least some liquid hydrocarbons, such as crude oil and/or condensates, evaporate and provide a gas lift effect.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2012
    Publication date: December 4, 2014
    Inventor: Sicco Dwars
  • Patent number: 8887814
    Abstract: An offshore universal riser system. A riser system includes a valve module which selectively permits and prevents fluid flow through a flow passage extending longitudinally through a riser string. An anchoring device releasably secures the valve module in the flow passage. A method of constructing a riser system includes the steps of installing the valve module in the flow passage, and installing at least one annular seal module in the flow passage. The annular seal module is operative to prevent fluid flow through an annular space between the riser string and a tubular string positioned in the flow passage. Drilling methods include injecting relatively low density fluid compositions into the annular space, and selectively varying a restriction to flow through a subsea choke in a drilling fluid return line. The riser string, including housings for the various modules and external control systems, is dimensioned for installation through a rotary table.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: Halliburton Energy Services, Inc.
    Inventors: Charles R. Orbell, Christian Leuchtenberg, Craig W. Godfrey
  • Publication number: 20140326459
    Abstract: A valve, system and method for controlling flow of fluid about a wellsite component of a wellsite are provided. The wellsite component has a flowline to pass the fluid therethrough. The valve includes a valve housing, a cage having holes therethrough positionable in selective fluid communication with the flowline, a valve plate operatively connectable between the valve housing and the cage (the valve plate having a sealing surface thereon), and a spool assembly comprising a spool slidably positionable in the cage. The spool assembly is selectively positionable in sealing engagement with the sealing surface of the valve plate to define a sealing interface therebetween, and is movable between an inlet position defining a fluid intake path and an outlet position defining a fluid outtake path whereby the fluid is selectively diverted through the wellsite component.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 14, 2014
    Publication date: November 6, 2014
    Applicant: National Oilwell Varco, L.P.
    Inventors: James Ray Landrith, II, Matthew Christopher Quattrone
  • Publication number: 20140318799
    Abstract: There is provided synthetic proppants, and in particular polysilocarb derived ceramic proppants. There is further provided hydraulic fracturing treatments utilizing these proppants, and methods of enhance hydrocarbon recovery.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 3, 2014
    Publication date: October 30, 2014
    Applicant: MELIOR INNOVATIONS, INC.
    Inventors: Timothy Moeller, Walter Sherwood, Mark Land, John Ely, Thomas Dyk, Andrew Hopkins
  • Publication number: 20140318797
    Abstract: A method of applying acid-wash to a subsea connection assembly, in particular a stabplate connection, in order to remove unwanted material such as marine growth and calcareous deposits. The method consists of inserting a plug, containing channels, into a central in a stabplate connection and injecting acid-wash through the plug. The plug may be carried by an operating tool arm of a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV).
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 24, 2014
    Publication date: October 30, 2014
    Applicant: Vetco Gray Controls Limited
    Inventors: Anthony Jason VANGASSE, Gareth Huw LEWIS
  • Publication number: 20140318798
    Abstract: Systems and methods comprise structures and methods for using a plurality of chemicals which are mixed subsea, resulting in a heated fluid which can be delivered by various means to an area about a subsea structure such as a pipe or other structure which has been compromised by a plug such as a solid gas hydrate or paraffinic plug. Various embodiments allow for selective use of insulated chambers and baffled conduits and the like, or combinations thereof, to aid in the mixing of the various chemicals and achieving a desired temperature.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 25, 2014
    Publication date: October 30, 2014
    Applicant: OCEANEERING INTERNATIONAL, INC.
    Inventors: Christopher Mancini, Nathaniel Dieringer
  • Patent number: 8863844
    Abstract: A subsea arrangement comprising an external casing and a pressure equalizing valve for equalization of the fluid pressure in an internal space of the casing. The pressure equalizing valve comprises a swing arm and a valve member arranged inside the casing. The swing arm carries the valve member and is pivotable about a pivot axis, under the effect of an external fluid pressure acting on the valve member, from a resting position, in which the valve member covers an opening provided in the casing and prevents fluid flow through this opening, to a raised position, in which the valve member uncovers said opening and allows fluid flow through it from the surroundings into said space for equalization of the fluid pressure therein when the arrangement is lowered into the sea. The swing arm is pivotable from the raised position to the resting position under the effect of gravity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 21, 2014
    Assignee: Vetco Gray Scandinavia AS
    Inventor: Olav Hande
  • Publication number: 20140301790
    Abstract: A liquid storage tank comprising an outer container wherein the outer container is rigid and has at least two inner containers disposed within the outer container. The first inner container contains seawater, and the second inner container contains at least one stored liquid. The at least two inner containers are flexible and pressure balanced while the volume of the outer container remains fixed, and the volumes of the at least two inner containers are variable. The liquid storage tank is provided for disposal and installation in a subsea environment.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 6, 2013
    Publication date: October 9, 2014
    Applicant: Safe Marine Transfer, LLC
    Inventor: James E. Chitwood
  • Patent number: 8851181
    Abstract: A method for removing a fluid influx from a subsea wellbore drilled using a pump to return fluid from the wellbore to the surface. The method includes detecting the influx when a rate of the return pump increases. Flow from the wellbore is diverted from the return pump to a choke line when the influx reaches the wellhead. A choke in the choke line is operated so that a substantially constant bottom hold pressure is maintained while drilling fluid continues to be pumped through the drill sgring. Fluid flow from the wellbore is redirected to the return pump inlet when the influx has substantially left the well.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2013
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: AGR Subsea, A.S.
    Inventor: John Cohen
  • Patent number: 8844633
    Abstract: A method for maintaining wellbore pressure includes reducing flow rate of a drilling fluid pump fluidly connected to a drill pipe in the wellbore. Flow out of the well is enabled into a first auxiliary line associated with a drilling riser. A seal around the drill pipe is closed. Fluid is pumped down a second auxiliary line at a rate selected to maintain a specific pressure in the wellbore. Drilling fluid flow through the drill pipe is stopped.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Assignee: At-Balance Americas, LLC
    Inventors: Donald G. Reitsma, Ossama R. Sehsah
  • Publication number: 20140262305
    Abstract: A method for lifting drilling mud from subsea to a drilling vessel which a pump having a body with a chamber, and a bladder in the chamber. The bladder attaches to the body and defines water and mud sides in the chamber. A mud inlet valve allows mud into the mud side of the chamber; which moves the bladder into the water side and urges water in the water side from the chamber and through a water exit valve. Pressurized water enters the chamber through a water inlet valve, which in turn pushes the bladder and mud from the chamber through a mud exit valve. The bladder separates the mud and water as it reciprocates in the chamber. Water and/or mud inlet valves are opened before associated exit valves to reduce pressure fluctuations in the fluid lines.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 6, 2013
    Publication date: September 18, 2014
    Applicant: Hydril USA Manufacturing LLC
    Inventors: Ahmet Duman, Dat Manh Nguyen, Devon Daniel
  • Publication number: 20140262315
    Abstract: A fluid recovery system is provided. In one embodiment, the fluid recovery system includes a telescoping joint of a marine riser having an inner barrel and an outer barrel configured to extend and retract with respect to one another when installed as part of the marine riser. A drip pan is coupled to the outer barrel to enable the drip pan to catch fluid, such as drilling mud, leaking from the telescoping joint between the inner barrel and the outer barrel. In this embodiment, the fluid recovery system also includes a pump and a return conduit that are coupled to enable the pump to pump caught fluid from the drip pan back into the telescoping joint via the return conduit. Additional systems, devices, and methods are also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Publication date: September 18, 2014
    Inventors: Roger D. Boisjolie, Paul L. Tasson, David L. Gilmore, William F. Puccio
  • Publication number: 20140262304
    Abstract: A diverter system having stabbing dogs is provided. In one embodiment, such a system includes a diverter, a housing, and a plurality of stabbing dogs coupled to the housing. The stabbing dogs are positioned to enable locking elements of the stabbing dogs to be extended into recesses in the diverter to secure the diverter within the housing. At least one of the recesses in the diverter is connected to a fluid conduit within the diverter, and at least one stabbing dog includes a fluid passage that enables fluid to be routed into the fluid conduit within the diverter through the at least one stabbing dog. Additional systems, devices, and methods are also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Publication date: September 18, 2014
    Applicant: CAMERON INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION
    Inventors: Jerod C. Bushman, John B. Hankins, John A. Hoefler, Harold A. Tenorio
  • Publication number: 20140251630
    Abstract: A seal assembly (30) and a running tool (20) are provided for sealing a casing annulus in a wellhead (14). A casing hanger (12) includes a radially external groove therein, and wellhead has a radially internal groove therein. A locking ring (36) may be actuated by the running tool to move into the internal recess in the wellhead and thereby axially connect the seal assembly and the wellhead. Another locking ring (40) is radially movable to connect the seal assembly to the casing hanger. The seal assembly seals the casing annulus while being interconnected with the wellhead and the casing hanger.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 8, 2011
    Publication date: September 11, 2014
    Applicant: Dril-Quip, Inc.
    Inventor: Denise A.M. Antunes
  • Patent number: 8807223
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to methods and apparatus to construct subsea wells with redundant parallel fluid flow control systems to allow new methods to stop subsea blow outs. More specifically, this invention provides methods and apparatus to construct subsea wells with a plurality of redundant parallel paths allowing for the first time drill pipe and other intervention conduits, wire line, and fluids to be deployed below a damaged drilling riser and or a damaged blow out preventer through a separate blow out preventer and riser system presented in this invention.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 19, 2014
    Inventor: David R. Smith
  • Patent number: 8807224
    Abstract: A subsea arrangement comprising an external casing and a pressure equalizing valve for equalization of the fluid pressure in an internal space of the casing. The pressure equalizing valve is provided with a valve body including a base section displaceably received in an opening provided in the casing; and a valve member secured to the base section and arranged inside the casing, the valve member facing a valve seat surrounding said opening. The valve body is displaceable upwards, under the effect of an external fluid pressure, from a resting position, in which the valve member prevents fluid flow into and out of said internal space, to a raised position, in which the valve member allows fluid flow from the surroundings into said internal space for equalization of the fluid pressure therein when the subsea arrangement is lowered into the sea.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 19, 2014
    Assignee: Vetco Gray Scandinavia AS
    Inventors: Olav Hande, Bjornar Bakken, Paula Guimaraes
  • Patent number: 8807226
    Abstract: Subsea wellhead assembly with an inner bore for conduction of produced hydrocarbons, equipped with a cooling means for cooling a section of the wellhead assembly exposed to heating by said hydrocarbons.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 14, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 19, 2014
    Assignee: Aker Subsea AS
    Inventor: Øystein Møgedal
  • Publication number: 20140224497
    Abstract: A downhole apparatus is described comprising a body and a sealing arrangement located on the body. The body has a longitudinal axis and the sealing arrangement comprises at least one elongated sealing member with an axis of elongation extending around the longitudinal axis. The sealing member comprises a material selected to expand on exposure to at least one predetermined fluid, such as a hydrocarbon or aqueous fluid encountered in a wellbore. A method of forming the apparatus and methods of use are described. Embodiments of the invention relate to wellbore packers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 19, 2013
    Publication date: August 14, 2014
    Applicant: Swelltec Limited
    Inventors: Kim Nutley, Brian Nutley, Glen Robitaille