Barite - Oilfield Drilling Additives

Barite - Oilfield Drilling Additives



Barite – TCI China offers its clients quality Barite, which is a dense mineral comprising barium sulfate [BaSO4].  Barite is commonly used as a density increasing agent for all types of drilling mud. One of the essential functions of drilling mud is the control of formation fluid pressure to prevent blowouts. Sometimes the mud density must be raised to stabilize fragile formations to reduce the risk of a blowout.

Barite increases the hydrostatic pressure of the drilling mud, allowing it to compensate for high-pressure zones experienced during drilling. Barite’s added advantage is that its softness enables it to become a lubricant, which reduced the damage to drilling tools during drilling.

Barite virtually is insoluble in water, and it does not react with other components in the mud. It can increase the density to 1.44 gm/cc to control the gas inflow and stop caving and pulling off dry pipes.

In its pure form, Barite is chemically inert in freshwater and oil based drilling fluids. It can be used to increase mud densities to as high as 2400 kg/m³.

Preparation & Procedures

Barite is mined in many locations across South China and is shipped as ore to grinding plants in strategic areas, where API specifies grinding to a particle size of 3 to74 microns. Pure barium sulfate has a specific gravity of 4.50 g/cm3, but drilling-grade Barite is expected to have a specific gravity of at least 4.20 g/cm3 to meet API specifications. Barite may contain contaminants such as cement, siderite, pyrrhotite, gypsum, and anhydrite. These contaminants can cause problems with specific mud systems.  The mud system should be evaluated in any quality assurance program to determine if additional drilling mud additives need to be included.

Barite can be mixed through the mud hopper as rapidly as needed. When large quantities are added to a mud system, it may be necessary to add water to prevent mud dehydration.

Those working with Barite should wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment, including dust masks and eye protection.

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