Realizing that accurately measuring the level of drilling fluid flow through the mud return line is crucial for drillers monitoring the drilling fluid balance in the wellbore, Cameron has developed a new, state-of-the-art mud flow sensor to increase reliability and provide the accuracy the market needs.
Drawbacks of conventional sensors
While several different types of sensors have historically been used for measuring the flow rate of drilling fluid through the mud return line, they have proven to be problematic for drillers and require frequent maintenance. These include paddle flowmeters featuring a mechanical paddle that rises and falls with the level of drilling fluid in the mud return line, and noncontact radar level sensors that transmit a radar pulse that is reflected off a surface of the drilling fluid flowing in the mud return line to determine the flow rate. Issues with paddle flowmeters are often noted on the paddle arm and bowl. Rocks and cuttings damage the paddle over time, and in the end the bowl disintegrates and ends up in the shakers. As a result, the mud loggers do not have verification on how the paddle is performing since the paddle arm still points in a downwards position and floats with the mud and seawater stream. The main problem associated with no-contact radar level sensors is condensation of mud and seawater.
Advantages of the Cameron mud flow sensor
The new Cameron mud flow sensor provides the solution that the market has been waiting for, offering increased reliability and accuracy while decreasing maintenance. The mud flow sensor was created and tested over time on several offshore rigs. By combining the feedback received from each rig, the current design was born. The new mud flow sensor has been proven to combat moisture and condensation by blowing compressed air at a minimum pressure of 2 bars (self-regulated) from its nozzle, and it functions well without regular maintenance.
- New interface is easily mounted; replaces existing setup by using the flange welded on the pipe.
- Assembly can be built in any location where mud flow sensors and paddles are located.
- Air pressure is self-regulated.
- Autocalibration of sensors provides increased reliability while minimizing maintenance.