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 Post subject: Lusi mud eruption
PostPosted: Mon Jul 22, 2013 11:47 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 10:45 am
Posts: 8222
Was a natural event, according to new study.

Though the old science provided a very convenient justification for the government of Indonesia to shake down an oil company.


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 Post subject: Re: Lusi mud eruption
PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:20 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 12:20 pm
Posts: 849
Location: Tantalizingly close to Colorado
I dunno. My understanding is that the drillers failed to control the well (either wellbore pressure wasn't high enough, or a casing cement job failed.) At any rate, once the wellbore failed, formation fluid made it's way to the surface and eroded the ground beneath the drilling rig, which then sank...completely.

Perhaps it couldn't be controlled, and it's possible the drillers did not realize there was a river of mud beneath them. I don't know if the eruption occurred during drilling, or during the completion stage. It's possible that the eruption was going to happen anyway, and the freshly drilled hole was now the weakest point in the area.

Pure speculation here...maybe the formation of interest was competent when they drilled through it, but then liquefied as a result of the earthquake, creating an unanticipated influx of formation fluid (leading to the blowout). We would need to know details of how the drilling program was carried out to determine this.


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 Post subject: Re: Lusi mud eruption
PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:03 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 12:20 pm
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Location: Tantalizingly close to Colorado
Wikipedia has more information on it. Hydrofracturing may have occured, resulting in an underground blowout...the fluids erupted nearby, not out of the wellbore. There is some debate on this however.

Alternatively, a fault may have been activated by the earthquake, or this was a natural geothermal event unrelated to the earthquake.

I tried to locate a picture of a partially submerged rig. We saw a picture of a mud eruption in a well-control class I took, and there were 3 drilling rigs. The first one completely submerged, a second one set up to try to control the well was partially submerged, and there was a third one set up to have a go at stopping the well. I don't know if it was the Lusi eruption, or a similar event in Russia somewhere.


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