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CHARACTERIZATION OF CLAY DEPOSITS FOR USE IN DRILLING FLUIDS FORMULATION (Part 1): BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY by tomlee

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· @tomlee · (edited)
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CHARACTERIZATION OF CLAY DEPOSITS FOR USE IN DRILLING FLUIDS FORMULATION (Part 1): BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
<div class ="text-justify">


_Hello Community, I'm Ndianabasi Tom, currently a final year student studying Petroleum Engineering. As a way of making my research work (project) more relevant and useful, I will be sharing my project proposal here for contributions, scrutiny, suggestions and criticism in view of embarking on the research. This is a multi-part article, on that note, other parts and chapters will be posted subsequently. I look forward to seeing your comments. Thank you in anticipation._
_______

### INTRODUCTION
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<center>![](https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmSrxsga17QW2CTjverDyoJNxPzuBEJJBnMq5TRFb322D9/image.png)
[Source - Pexels](https://images.pexels.com/photos/216693/pexels-photo-216693.jpeg?auto=compress&cs=tinysrgb&dpr=1&w=500)</center>
_______
**Background Of Study**
In terms of foreign exchange, the oil and gas industry has brought about enormous contributions and advancement to the economy of Nigeria. This is so because the oil company tends to generate lots of income when an operation is being carried out successfully and hence, generates revenue to the country. In the Niger Delte region, oil and gas exploration dates back to the mid 1950s, when the first oil reserve was being discovered at Oloibiri in the present day Bayelsa State in 1956.

Recently, the Nigerian government's earnings from crude oil sales has been curtailed and limited as a result of the global collapse in the price of crude oil. This scenario has also placed some sort of financial constraints on the major players in the oil industry and it happens that the indigenous oil companies are the most affected. There are the most hit of these players in that they may not have that much capacity financially and resource wise when compared to their international counterparts.  

Owing to this, there is a great need to look inwards into the harnessing of the available local resources as a way of providing solutions to the present challenges in the oil and gas industry. Harnessing and utilizing local resources would then bring about a clear reduction in the rate of importation of materials as well as the conservation of financial resources for the indigenous oil companies.	 

Hydrocarbons (crude oil) are being located thousands of feet beneath the ground and thus, can only be accessed and exploited through effective and correct drilling operations. In view of this fact, the petroleum industry has continued to make increasing use of clay, which is the major constituent of drilling fluids. This implies that in order to access and recover oil and gas reserves, drilling of oil wells into the rocks is a necessary factor and as well, clay and drilling mud will always be a much needed and relevant tools in the oil and gas industry. 

Drilling operations happen to be a major and very important aspect in the oil and gas industry and a very essential ingredient for this operation is the drilling mud which is often referred to as drilling fluid.  The drilling operation, which involves the penetration of the earth’s crust to several thousands of feet where the hydrocarbons are accumulated in the reservoir using rotary drilling process, cannot be successfully carried out without the use of drilling mud. Since drilling operation becomes very necessary for the confirmation and extraction of oil and gas from beneath the earth surface, the availability of drilling fluid is of high concern to the petroleum industry. This then makes clay deposits (bentonite) a much needed and necessary tool as it is majorly need for the formulation of drilling fluids.
  
>The use of the term “drilling fluid” is often preferred to the generic term “drilling mud” because it implies that the characteristics, features or attributes are essentially designed into fluid system rather than those that occur naturally in subsurface formations through the mixing of water and formation clays. In addition, the term “drilling fluids” relates fluids with differing composition while “drilling muds” simply mean a mixture of clay and water. Drilling mud constitutes a large proportion of oil field chemicals consumed annually (Agwu et al., 2015). 	
_____


The raw materials used for the formulation of drilling mud are usually selected clays and are mainly judged by their behaviour in water. Their suitability is determined by various criterias, which includes filtration characteristics, volumetric yield of a given clay, abrasives content and soluble impurites . The raw material which meets most of these requirements happen to be bentonite. Bentonite is a clay mineral that is composed principally of three-layer clays, such as montmorillonite, and widely used as a mud additive for viscosity and filtration control. 
______

>Bentonite was named after Fort Benton (Wyoming, USA), the locality where it was first found. In addition to montmorillonite, bentonite may also contain feldspar, biotite, kaolinite, illite, cristobalite, pyroxene, zircon, and crystalline quartz (Parkes, 1982).
___

It is a well-known fact that drilling activities in the petroleum industries in Nigeria have consumed, are still consuming and will still be consuming large amounts of clays for the sole purpose of formulating drilling fluids. Sadly, these large amount of clays are all being imported, not minding the fact that Nigeria has a very large reserve of clay. 
___

>The proven reserve of bentonite in Nigeria has been modestly estimated to be above 700 million metric tons (Aigbedion and Iyayi, 2007; James et al., 2008; Omole et al., 2013; Bilal et al., 2015) with the bulk of it lying in Afuze, Edo State, Mid-Western Nigeria which holds about 70–80 million metric tons of bentonite clay (Nweke et al., 2015; Nweke, 2015).
_______

As a result of this vast deposits of local bentonite currently present in the Nigerian soil, the Federal Government of Nigeria in 2003 placed a restriction on the importation of foreign bentonite clays as a way of  tapping into the vast deposits of clay in the country (Oriji et al., 2014). Despite this act done by the federal government, the oil and gas industry is yet to place full confidence in the use of locally sourced bentonite clays for drilling application, as there is little or no reported case of the use of local bentonite clays for drilling operations. 
____

Yearly bentonite's importation by companies in Nigeria amounts to millions of dollars and this is not helping in the growth and development of economy of the nation. The more reason the federal government came up with the initiative of developing local content, that is, harnessing and utilizing local resources.
______

<center>![](https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmRhaukrPYF8NjFbTyZvYVgpnBhxr1r5UFvQD7qnFE5vmt/image.png)
[Source - Pixabay](https://cdn.pixabay.com/photo/2015/07/27/19/20/gas-863196__340.jpg)</center>
_____

Drilling fluids highly affects the total cost associated with a particular drilling operation. Hence, the formulation of drilling fluid using local clays becomes very much needed, considering the fact that more drilling fluid will be required as oil and gas exploitation has expanded to other regions aside from the conventional onshore areas.
	 	
Drilling fluids have been used has the circulating agent to ensure primarily, the removal of cuttings from the wellbore to the surface, hole stabilization, pressure maintenance and control etc since the advent of rotary drilling. Now as development reached rotary drilling, more engineering attention was drawn to drilling fluids and its function broadened as well, which has demanded its compositional increase.

Odumugbo (2005) maintains that drilling companies operating on the shores of the Niger Delta import bulk drilling fluid materials to carry out their respective operations. This has been a great burden and major concern to the industry since some of these drilling fluid materials cannot be recycled (Oyeneyin, 1998). The foreign exchange involved and the high cost of drilling fluid materials also constitute a problem for the petroleum industry. Owing to this, there is a need for formulating drilling fluids using local materials and therefore, imperative to locally outsource  clay materials in order to conserve foreign exchange, create employment and to enhance Nigerian Local Content development in the drilling component of oil and gas industry.
______

#### REFERENCES

- _[ENHANCING THE PERFORMANCE OF UBAKALA CLAY FOR USE AS DRILLING MUD.](http://futospace.futo.edu.ng/xmlui/bitstream/handle/123456789/1445/Igwe.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y)_
- _[Formulation of water-based drilling fluid using local materials](https://www.researchgate.net/publication/292877234_Formulation_of_waterbased_drilling_fluid_using_local_materials)_
- _[Properties and application of Nigerian bentonite clay deposits for drilling mud formulation: Recent advances and future prospects](http://jsaer.com/download/vol-5-iss-3-2018/JSAER2018-05-03-359-365.pdf)_
- _[Suitability of Using Agbarha Clay for Drilling Mud Formulation in Oil and Gas Industry](http://jsaer.com/download/vol-5-iss-3-2018/JSAER2018-05-03-359-365.pdf)_
- _[EVALUATION OF THE EFFECTIVENESS OF LOCAL CLAY FROM EBONYI STATE, NIGERIA AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR BENTONITE IN DRILLING FLUIDS](https://www.eajournals.org/wp-content/uploads/Evaluation-of-the-Effectiveness-of-Local-Clay-from-Ebonyi-State-Nigeria-as-a-Substitute-for-Bentonite-in-Drilling-Fluids.pdf)_
- http://www.ijesmjournal.com/issues%20PDF%20file/Archive-2015/JUlY-SEPTEMBER-2015/3.pdf
- http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/12564/1/1-s2.0-S0169131717301102-main.pdf
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@alexdory ·
$0.04
I like the subject and the fact that you took the time to share your own personal research in this field. We are always happy and welcome personal research projects like your own, on SteemSTEM. 
While I am not crazy about the oil industry, I think that we must transition slowly from being so dependant on fossil fuels to renewable energy while keeping the environmental protection on maximum. 

I am waiting to read your full paper as you publish it. Will you also include environmental protection data or just an analysis of the feasibility of the clay deposits for drilling purposes? 

I left you a message on Discord about the free for reuse pictures, and given you a few ways to ensure that they are free for reuse. 

Cheers and welcome to SteemSTEM. 

https://media.discordapp.net/attachments/422121541833326614/497381895068450816/Mentor_Update_2.png
👍  
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vote details (1)
@tomlee ·
Actually the question of whether crude oil was ever finish arose. Many say it will, some say it won't. But howbeit, the oil industry encourages the development and usage of other alternate hydrocarbon sources to diminish dependence on oil and gas. There are many other renewable sources of energy that if we harness will be very useful to mankind. 

Still working on it but I will be publishing in parts for now. 

The purpose of the research is just to ascertain the suitability of the available clay deposits within the area of study. Maybe subsequently, I'll consider the aspect you have raised since it is also very necessary.

Thank you for taking your time through the post. I really do appreciate.
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@carlos84 ·
$0.05
Very good your contribution @tomlee, as I have always said in my publications, drilling mud is very important in drilling activities, since the mud inside the hole is like the blood that circulates through our body. It is also important to highlight reservoir pressures that are handled when drilling some wells, since if they are reservoir with low pressures, it is convenient to drill with fluids under balance, where bentonite does not help much. Greetings, I hope to be soon reading your publications about drilling fluids.
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@tomlee ·
Yeah! Drilling mud is very much needed in the operations of the oil industry especially in drilling. It is then the  job of the mud engineer to ensure that the mud is formulated in such a way that it balances the pressure in the reservoir. When the density of the mud is too low, it might lead to blowout because the reservoir pressure will be greater than the hydrostatic pressure in the mud column.
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@greenrun ·
>Despite this act done by the federal government, the oil and gas industry is yet to place **full confidence in the use of locally sourced bentonite** clays for drilling application, as there is little or no reported case of the use of local bentonite clays for drilling operations.

Any idea why the oil exploration industry have this lack of confidence on the abundantly locally sourced drilling fluid?
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@tomlee ·
This is actually one of the reasons the research is being done. Like it is clearly stated, not all clays are suitable or can be used in the formulation of drilling fluids. There are certain properties a particular clay should possess in order for it to be suitable for drilling fluid. A typical clay that has the required properties is bentonite.

So, the indigenous oil industries do not have confidence in the available local clays because most of them are unsuitable for use. So, the work aims at characterizing the clay deposits in terms of suitability. The suitable ones can then be recommended for use; additives can then be suggested for the unsuitable ones to make them useful.
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@steemstem ·
re-tomlee-characterization-of-clay-deposits-in-uyo-local-government-area-of-akwa-ibom-state-in-terms-of-their-suitability-in-drilling-20190712t161148010z
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@emperorhassy ·
This is a very nice post, @tomlee. Thanks for sharing, it's really educating. I'll be looking forward to read many more from you.
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@tomlee ·
Thank you for you stopping by...
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@utopian-io ·
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permlinkre-characterization-of-clay-deposits-in-uyo-local-government-area-of-akwa-ibom-state-in-terms-of-their-suitability-in-drilling-20190714t020835z
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@mathowl · (edited)
It seems that this post contains plag. Unfortunately, utopian and steemstem were not quick enough to remove their votes. For proof see below.

I think it is fair that from now on you will receive downvotes equivalent to the amount of upvotes given by steemstem and utopian.






**Copy/paste:** 
 
Source: Prior to the government’s initiative to develop local content, the cost of importation of Bentonitefor drilling activities in Nigeria runs to millions of dollar annually which  has been detrimental to the economy of the country considering that about  5  to  15%  of  the  cost  of  drilling  a  well  which  ranges  between  $1  million  to  $100  million  accounts  for  drilling fluids .  http://www.ijesmjournal.com/issues%20PDF%20file/Archive-2015/JUlY-SEPTEMBER-2015/3.pdf

Post: Prior to the government’s initiative to develop local content, the cost of importation of bentonite for drilling activities in Nigeria runs to millions of dollar annually which has been detrimental to the economy of the country considering that about 5 to 15% of the cost of drilling a well which ranges between $1 million to $100 million accounts for drilling fluids (Ben B., et al., 1994). 

(Note that the ref mentioned in the post does not match the source from which it is copy/pasted, most likely this has been done to mask the abuse)

**Spinning:** 

Source: The associated cost of importing such materials for drilling opera-tions is estimated to amount into millions of dollars per annum andthis is damaging to the economy. Furthermore, as the search for oil and gas reserves shifts from onshore areas to offshore and deep offshoreregions, likewise is the associated cost of the overall drilling operation.The cost of drilling operation is also influenced by the performance ofthe drillingfluid. This in turn makes the design, formulation and main-tenance of drillingfluids important
 http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/12564/1/1-s2.0-S0169131717301102-main.pdf

Post:The associated cost of importing such materials like bentonite clay for drilling operations is amounts to millions of dollars per year and this is damaging and detrimental to the Nigeria economy. Furthermore, as the exploitation for oil and gas reserves expands from onshore regions to the offshore and deep offshore areas, the associated financial cost for an effective and efficient drilling operation tends to increase. It should be noted that the cost of drilling operation is highly influenced by the performance of the drilling fluid and this in turn makes the design, formulation and maintenance of drilling fluids important.
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@tomlee · (edited)
Noted!
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@mathowl ·
You copy/pasted it therefore it is not a citation: https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-difference-between-quotation-and-citation
![2019-07-14 (3).png](https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmWWduVzpYUNrvJJBBSphPZrfpP3APHzbc8PRvpJyV83nY/2019-07-14%20(3).png)

just make a new account already liltom002
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