US 20050241834 A1 Abstract A tubing/casing connection for U-tube wells. In a described embodiment, a tubular string connection system includes a first tubular string having an expanded entry guide; and a second tubular string having an end guided into the first tubular string by the entry guide.
Claims(111) 1. A tubular string connection system, comprising:
a first tubular string having an expanded entry guide; and a second tubular string having an end guided into the first tubular string by the entry guide. 2. The system of 3. The system of 4. The system of 5. The system of 6. The system of 7. The system of 8. The system of 9. The system of 10. The system of 11. A method of connecting first and second tubular strings in a well, the method comprising the steps of:
providing an expandable entry guide on the first tubular string; positioning the entry guide in the well, and then expanding the entry guide; and guiding the second tubular string into the first tubular string. 12. The method of 13. The method of 14. The method of 15. The method of 16. The method of 17. The method of 18. The method of 19. The method of 20. The method of 21. The method of 22. The method of 23. The method of 24. The method of 25. The method of 26. The method of 27. The method of 28. The method of 29. The method of 30. The method of 31. The method of 32. The method of 33. The method of 34. The method of 35. The method of 36. The method of 37. The method of 38. The method of 39. The method of 40. The method of 41. The method of 42. The method of 43. The method of 44. The method of 45. The method of 46. The method of 47. The method of 48. The method of 49. The method of 50. The method of 51. The method of 52. The method of 53. The method of 54. A well interconnection system, comprising:
first and second wellheads interconnected to each other by first and second tubular strings in sealed communication with each other at a first subterranean tubular string connection; a first wellbore junction disposed between the first wellhead and the first tubular string connection; and a second wellbore junction disposed between the second wellhead and the first tubular string connection. 55. The system of 56. The system of 57. The system of 58. The system of 59. The system of 60. The system of 61. The system of 62. The system of 63. The system of 64. A method of connecting first and second tubular strings in a well, the method comprising the steps of:
providing an expandable entry guide on the first tubular string; positioning the first tubular string in a first wellbore; positioning the second tubular string in a second wellbore intersecting the first wellbore; and guiding the second tubular string into the first tubular string via the entry guide. 65. The method of 66. The method of 67. The method of 68. The method of 69. The method of 70. The method of 71. The method of 72. The method of 73. The method of 74. The method of 75. The method of 76. The method of 77. The method of 78. The method of 79. The method of 80. The method of 81. The method of 82. The method of 83. The method of 84. The method of 85. The method of 86. The method of 87. The method of 88. The method of 89. The method of 90. The method of 91. The method of 92. The method of 93. The method of 94. The method of 95. The method of 96. The method of 97. The method of 98. The method of 99. The method of 100. The method of 101. The method of 102. The method of 103. The method of 104. The method of 105. The method of 106. A well interconnection system, comprising:
first, second and third wellheads interconnected to each other substantially underground. 107. The system of 108. The system of 109. The system of 110. The system of 111. The system of Description The present invention relates generally to equipment utilized and operations performed in conjunction with a subterranean well and, in an embodiment described herein, more particularly provides a tubular string connection for U-tube wells. It is known to drill a wellbore so that it intersects another wellbore. Examples of intersecting wellbores include U-tube wells and multilateral or branching wells. It is also known to interconnect tubular strings, such as casing, liner or tubing strings, in the intersecting wellbores. However, prior systems for interconnecting tubular strings in intersecting wellbores have suffered from some disadvantages. For example, in these systems one tubular string is typically inserted into an interior of another tubular string. This generally requires that the inserted string have a reduced inner diameter, which restricts flow and access through the string. Another disadvantage is that it is at times difficult to align the tubular strings so that they properly engage each other. Therefore, it may be seen that it would be beneficial to provide improved systems and methods for interconnecting tubular strings in intersecting wellbores. These systems and methods could be useful in other applications, as well. In carrying out the principles of the present invention, in accordance with an embodiment thereof, a tubular string connection system is provided which may be used to interconnect tubular strings in U-tube wells. Associated methods are also provided. In one aspect of the invention, a tubular string connection system is provided which includes a first tubular string having an expanded entry guide. A second tubular string has an end guided into the first tubular string by the entry guide. In another aspect of the invention, a method of connecting first and second tubular strings in a well is provided. The method includes the steps of: providing an expandable entry guide on the first tubular string; positioning the entry guide in the well, and then expanding the entry guide; and guiding the second tubular string into the first tubular string. In yet another aspect of the invention, a well interconnection system is provided. The system includes two wellheads interconnected to each other by two tubular strings in sealed communication with each other at a subterranean tubular string connection. A wellbore junction is positioned between one of the wellheads and the tubular string connection. Another wellbore junction is positioned between the other wellhead and the tubular string connection. In a further aspect of the invention, a method of connecting tubular strings in a well includes the steps of: providing an expandable entry guide on one of the tubular strings; positioning the tubular string in a wellbore; positioning another tubular string in another wellbore intersecting the first wellbore; and guiding the second tubular string into the first tubular string via the entry guide. In a still further aspect of the invention, a well interconnection system is provided. The system includes first, second and third wellheads interconnected to each other substantially underground. The second, or middle, wellhead may operate as a pumping station for transferring fluid between the first and third wellheads. These and other features, advantages, benefits and objects of the present invention will become apparent to one of ordinary skill in the art upon careful consideration of the detailed description of representative embodiments of the invention hereinbelow and the accompanying drawings. Representatively illustrated in As depicted in A tubular string Referring additionally now to Other expanding means could be used, if desired. For example, the entry guide In the cross-sectional view depicted in The tubular string Note that the terms “cement” and “cementing” are used herein to indicate not only the use of cementitious material, but also the use of any other hardenable material, such as epoxies, plastics, foams, etc., which may be used in an annulus between a tubular string and a wellbore to secure and/or seal the tubular string in the wellbore. In addition, it should be understood that it is not necessary for the tubular string It may be seen that the outer end wall Referring additionally now to As the wellbore After the wellbore The latch Instead of the seal Referring additionally now to While the tubular string Note that in this embodiment the entry guide Referring additionally now to The detector Note that it is not necessary for there to be multiple sources In Referring additionally now to In this embodiment, a drill string The drill string Referring additionally now to In the system The tubular string The tubular string Referring additionally now to Thus, the tubular string As another alternative, the tubular string The tubular string The entry guide Referring additionally now to A wellbore A branch wellbore A tubular string A wellbore junction These wellbore junctions It may now be appreciated that the principles of the invention permit a wide variety of tubular string connection configurations in the system Note that any of the tubular strings The screens Referring additionally now to As depicted in As depicted in The tubular string Expansion of the reduced diameter portion Note that expansion of the portion Referring additionally now to A wellbore A wellbore The wellhead Although tubular string connection systems Of course, a person skilled in the art would, upon a careful consideration of the above description of representative embodiments of the invention, readily appreciate that many modifications, additions, substitutions, deletions, and other changes may be made to these specific embodiments, and such changes are contemplated by the principles of the present invention. Accordingly, the foregoing detailed description is to be clearly understood as being given by way of illustration and example only, the spirit and scope of the present invention being limited solely by the appended claims and their equivalents. Referenced by
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