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Publication numberUS20070034383 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/546,903
PCT numberPCT/US2004/008171
Publication dateFeb 15, 2007
Filing dateMar 15, 2004
Priority dateMar 14, 2003
Also published asCA2517524A1, WO2004083594A2, WO2004083594A3, WO2004083594B1
Publication number10546903, 546903, PCT/2004/8171, PCT/US/2004/008171, PCT/US/2004/08171, PCT/US/4/008171, PCT/US/4/08171, PCT/US2004/008171, PCT/US2004/08171, PCT/US2004008171, PCT/US200408171, PCT/US4/008171, PCT/US4/08171, PCT/US4008171, PCT/US408171, US 2007/0034383 A1, US 2007/034383 A1, US 20070034383 A1, US 20070034383A1, US 2007034383 A1, US 2007034383A1, US-A1-20070034383, US-A1-2007034383, US2007/0034383A1, US2007/034383A1, US20070034383 A1, US20070034383A1, US2007034383 A1, US2007034383A1
InventorsMark Shuster, Scott Costa
Original AssigneeMark Shuster, Scott Costa
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus and method for radially expanding a wellbore casing using an expansion mandrel and a rotary expansion tool
US 20070034383 A1
Abstract
An apparatus and method for radially expanding a wellbore casing using an expansion mandrel and a rotary expansion tool.
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Claims(15)
1. An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
a tubular support member defining a first passage;
a tubular expansion cone defining a second passage coupled to the tubular support member;
a fluid driven motor coupled to the tubular expansion cone comprising an inlet; and
a rotary expansion device coupled to the output shaft of the fluid driven motor;
wherein the first passage is operably coupled to the second passage;
wherein the second passage is operably coupled to the inlet of the fluid driven motor.
2. An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
a first expansion device for controllably straining the tubular member; and
a second expansion device coupled to the first expansion device for controllably stressing the tubular member.
3. The apparatus of claim 2, further comprising a motor coupled to the first expansion device for rotating the second expansion device relative to the first expansion device.
4. A method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
controllably straining the tubular member, and
then controllably stressing the tubular member.
5. An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
means for controllably straining the tubular member; and
means for controllably stressing the tubular member after controllably straining the tubular member.
6. An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
a first expansion device for radially expanding the tubular member; and
a second expansion device coupled to the first expansion device for further radially expanding the tubular member.
7. The apparatus of claim 6, further comprising a motor coupled to the first expansion device for rotating the second expansion device relative to the first expansion device.
8. A method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
radially expanding a portion of the tubular member; and
then further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member.
9. The method of claim 8, wherein radially expanding the portion of the tubular member comprises:
applying forces to a continuous circumferential portion of the interior surface of the tubular member.
10. The method of claim 8, wherein further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member comprises:
applying forces to one or more discrete portions of the interior surface of the tubular member.
11. A system for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
means for radially expanding a portion of the tubular member; and
means for then further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member.
12. The system of claim 11, wherein means for radially expanding the portion of the tubular member comprises:
means for applying forces to a continuous circumferential portion of the interior surface of the tubular member.
13. The system of claim 11, wherein means for further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member comprises:
means for applying forces to one or more discrete portions of the interior surface of the tubular member.
14. A method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
controllably stressing the tubular member; and
then controllably straining the tubular member.
15. An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member, comprising:
means for controllably stressing the tubular member; and
means for controllably straining the tubular member after controllably stressing the tubular member.
Description
CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

The present application claims the benefit of the filing date of U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/454,896, attorney docket no. 25791.236, filed on Mar. 14, 2003, the disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference.

The present application is related to the following: (1) U.S. Pat. No. 6,497,289, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/454,139, attorney docket no. 25791.03.02, filed on Dec. 3, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/111,293, filed on Dec. 7, 1998, (2) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/510,913, attorney docket no. 25791.7.02, filed on Feb. 23, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/121,702, filed on Feb. 25, 1999, (3) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/502,350, attorney docket no. 25791.8.02, filed on Feb. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/119,611, filed on Feb. 11, 1999, (4) U.S. Pat. No. 6,328,113, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/440,338, attorney docket number 25791.9.02, filed on Nov. 15, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/108,558, filed on Nov. 16, 1998, (5) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/169,434, attorney docket no. 25791.10.04, filed on Jul. 1, 2002, which claims priority from provisional application 60/183,546, filed on Feb. 18, 2000, (6) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/523,468, attorney docket no. 25791.11.02, filed on Mar. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/124,042, filed on Mar. 11, 1999, (7) U.S. Pat. No. 6,568,471, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/512,895, attorney docket no. 25791.12.02, filed on Feb. 24, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/121,841, filed on Feb. 26, 1999, (8) U.S. Pat. No. 6,575,240, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/511,941, attorney docket no. 25791.16.02, filed on Feb. 24, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/121,907, filed on Feb. 26, 1999, (9) U.S. Pat. No. 6,557,640, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/588,946, attorney docket no. 25791.17.02, filed on Jun. 7, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/137,998, filed on Jun. 7, 1999, (10) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/981,916, attorney docket no. 25791.18, filed on Oct. 18, 2001 as a continuation-in-part application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,328,113, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/440,338, attorney docket number 25791.9.02, filed on Nov. 15, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/108,558, filed on Nov. 16, 1998, (11) U.S. Pat. No. 6,604,763, which was filed as application Ser. No. 09/559,122, attorney docket no. 25791.23.02, filed on Apr. 26, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/131,106, filed on Apr. 26, 1999, (12) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/030,593, attorney docket no. 25791.25.08, filed on Jan. 8, 2002, which claims priority from provisional application 60/146,203, filed on Jul. 29, 1999, (13) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/143,039, attorney docket no. 25791.26, filed on Jul. 9, 1999, (14) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/111,982, attorney docket no. 25791.27.08, filed on Apr. 30, 2002, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/162,671, attorney docket no. 25791.27, filed on Nov. 1, 1999, (15) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/154,047, attorney docket no. 25791.29, filed on Sep. 16, 1999, (16) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/438,828, attorney docket no. 25791.31, filed on Jan. 9, 2003, (17) U.S. Pat. No. 6,564,875, which was filed as application Ser. No. 09/679,907, attorney docket no. 25791.34.02, on Oct. 5, 2000, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/159,082, attorney docket no. 25791.34, filed on Oct. 12, 1999, (18) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/089,419, filed on Mar. 27, 2002, attorney docket no. 25791.36.03, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/159,039, attorney docket no. 25791.36, filed on Oct. 12, 1999, (19) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/679,906, filed on Oct. 5, 2000, attorney docket no. 25791.37.02, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/159,033, attorney docket no. 25791.37, filed on Oct. 12, 1999, (20) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/303,992, filed on Nov. 22, 2002, attorney docket no. 25791.38.07, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/212,359, attorney docket no. 25791.38, filed on Jun. 19, 2000, (21) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/165,228, attorney docket no. 25791.39, filed on Nov. 12, 1999, (22) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/455,051, attorney docket no. 25791.40, filed on Mar. 14, 2003, (23) PCT application US02/2477, filed on Jun. 26, 2002, attorney docket no. 25791.44.02, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/303,711, attorney docket no. 25791.44, filed on Jul. 6, 2001, (24) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/311,412, filed on Dec. 12, 2002, attorney docket no. 25791.45.07, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/221,443, attorney docket no. 25791.45, filed on Jul. 28, 2000, (25) U.S. patent application serial no. 10/______, filed on Dec. 18, 2002, attorney docket no. 25791.46.07, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/221,645, attorney docket no. 25791.46, filed on Jul. 28, 2000, (26) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/322,947, filed on Jan. 22, 2003, attorney docket no. 25791.47.03, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/233,638, attorney docket no. 25791.47, filed on Sep. 18, 2000, (27) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/406,648, filed on Mar. 31, 2003, attorney docket no. 25791.48.06, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/237,334, attorney docket no. 25791.48, filed on Oct. 2, 2000, (28) PCT application US02/04353, filed on Feb. 14, 2002, attorney docket no. 25791.50.02, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/270,007, attorney docket no. 25791.50, filed on Feb. 20, 2001, (29) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/465,835, filed on Jun. 13, 2003, attorney docket no. 25791.51.06, which claims priority from provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/262,434, attorney docket no. 25791.51, filed on Jan. 17, 2001, (30) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/465,831, filed on Jun. 13, 2003, attorney docket no. 25791.52.06, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/259,486, attorney docket no. 25791.52, filed on Jan. 3, 2001, (31) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/452,303, filed on Mar. 5, 2003, attorney docket no. 25791.53, (32) U.S. Pat. No. 6,470,966, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/850,093, filed on May 7, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.55, as a divisional application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,497,289, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/454,139, attorney docket no. 25791.03.02, filed on Dec. 3, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/111,293, filed on Dec. 7, 1998, (33) U.S. Pat. No. 6,561,227, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/852,026, filed on May 9, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.56, as a divisional application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,497,289, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/454,139, attorney docket no. 25791.03.02, filed on Dec. 3, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/111,293, filed on Dec. 7, 1998, (34) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/852,027, filed on May 9, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.57, as a divisional application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,497,289, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/454,139, attorney docket no. 25791.03.02, filed on Dec. 3, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/111,293, filed on Dec. 7, 1998, (35) PCT Application US02/25608, attorney docket no. 25791.58.02, filed on Aug. 13, 2002, which claims priority from provisional application 60/318,021, filed on Sep. 7, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.58, (36) PCT Application US02/24399, attorney docket no. 25791.59.02, filed on Aug. 1, 2002, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/313,453, attorney docket no. 25791.59, filed on Aug. 20, 2001, (37) PCT Application US02/29856, attorney docket no. 25791.60.02, filed on Sep. 19, 2002, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/326,886, attorney docket no. 25791.60, filed on Oct. 3, 2001, (38) PCT Application US02/20256, attorney docket no. 25791.61.02, filed on Jun. 26, 2002, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/303,740, attorney docket no. 25791.61, filed on Jul. 6, 2001, (39) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/962,469, filed on Sep. 25, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.62, which is a divisional of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/523,468, attorney docket no. 25791.11.02, filed on Mar. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/124,042, filed on Mar. 11, 1999, (40) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/962,470, filed on Sep. 25, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.63, which is a divisional of U.S. patent application Ser. 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No. 60/399,240, attorney docket no. 25791.111, filed on Jul. 29, 2002, (82) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,487, attorney docket no. 25791.112, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (83) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,488, attorney docket no. 25791.114, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (84) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/280,356, attorney docket no. 25791.115, filed on Oct. 25, 2002, which is a continuation of U.S. Pat. No. 6,470,966, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/850,093, filed on May 7, 2001, attorney docket no. 25791.55, as a divisional application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,497,289, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/454,139, attorney docket no. 25791.03.02, filed on Dec. 3, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/111,293, filed on Dec. 7, 1998, (85) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,177, attorney docket no. 25791.117, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (86) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,653, attorney docket no. 25791.118, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (87) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/405,610, attorney docket no. 25791.119, filed on Aug. 23, 2002, (88) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/405,394, attorney docket no. 25791.120, filed on Aug. 23, 2002, (89) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,544, attorney docket no. 25791.121, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (90) PCT application PCT/US03/24779, filed on Aug. 8, 2003, attorney docket no. 25791.125.02, which claims priority from U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/407,442, attorney docket no. 25791.125, filed on Aug. 30, 2002, (91) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/423,363, attorney docket no. 25791.126, filed on Dec. 10, 2002, (92) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,196, attorney docket no. 25791.127, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (93) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,187, attorney docket no. 25791.128, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (94) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/412,371, attorney docket no. 25791.129, filed on Sep. 20, 2002, (95) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/382,325, attorney docket no. 25791.145, filed on Mar. 5, 2003, which is a continuation of U.S. Pat. No. 6,557,640, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/588,946, attorney docket no. 25791.17.02, filed on Jun. 7, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/137,998, filed on Jun. 7, 1999, (96) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/624,842, attorney docket no. 25791.151, filed on Jul. 22, 2003, which is a divisional of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/502,350, attorney docket no. 25791.8.02, filed on Feb. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/119,611, filed on Feb. 11, 1999, (97) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/431,184, attorney docket no. 25791.157, filed on Dec. 5, 2002, (98) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/448,526, attorney docket no. 25791.185, filed on Feb. 18, 2003, (99) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/461,539, attorney docket no. 25791.186, filed on Apr. 9, 2003, (100) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/462,750, attorney docket no. 25791.193, filed on Apr. 14, 2003, (101) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/436,106, attorney docket no. 25791.200, filed on Dec. 23, 2002, (102) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/442,942, attorney docket no. 25791.213, filed on Jan. 27, 2003, (103) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/442,938, attorney docket no. 25791.225, filed on Jan. 27, 2003, (104) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/418,687, attorney docket no. 25791.228, filed on Apr. 18, 2003, (105) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. 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No. 60/457,965, attorney docket no. 25791.260, filed on Mar. 27, 2003, (112) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/455,718, attorney docket no. 25791.262, filed on Mar. 18, 2003, (113) U.S. Pat. No. 6,550,821, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/811,734, filed on Mar. 19, 2001, (114) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/436,467, attorney docket no. 25791.268, filed on May 12, 2003, which is a continuation of U.S. Pat. No. 6,604,763, which was filed as application Ser. No. 09/559,122, attorney docket no. 25791.23.02, filed on Apr. 26, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/131,106, filed on Apr. 26, 1999, (115) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/459,776, attorney docket no. 25791.270, filed on Apr. 2, 2003, (116) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/461,094, attorney docket no. 25791.272, filed on Apr. 8, 2003, (117) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/461,038, attorney docket no. 25791.273, filed on Apr. 7, 2003, (118) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/463,586, attorney docket no. 25791.277, filed on Apr. 17, 2003, (119) U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/472,240, attorney docket no. 25791.286, filed on May 20, 2003, (120) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/619,285, attorney docket no. 25791.292, filed on Jul. 14, 2003, which is a continuation-in-part of U.S. utility patent application Ser. No. 09/969,922, attorney docket no. 25791.69, filed on Oct. 3, 2001, which is a continuation-in-part application of U.S. Pat. No. 6,328,113, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/440,338, attorney docket number 25791.9.02, filed on Nov. 15, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/108,558, filed on Nov. 16, 1998, (121) U.S. utility patent application Ser. No. 10/418,688, attorney docket no. 25791.257, which was filed on Apr. 18, 2003, as a division of U.S. utility patent application Ser. No. 09/523,468, attorney docket no. 25791.11.02, filed on Mar. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/124,042, filed on Mar. 11, 1999, (122) PCT patent application serial no. ______, attorney docket no. 25791.238.02, filed on ______, (123) PCT patent application serial no. ______, attorney docket no. 25791.253.02, filed on ______, and (124) PCT patent application serial no. ______, attorney docket no. 25791.40.02, filed on ______, the disclosures of which are incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates generally to oil and gas exploration, and in particular to forming and repairing wellbore casings to facilitate oil and gas exploration.

Conventionally, when a wellbore is created, a number of casings are installed in the borehole to prevent collapse of the borehole wall and to prevent undesired outflow of drilling fluid into the formation or inflow of fluid from the formation into the borehole. The borehole is drilled in intervals whereby a casing which is to be installed in a lower borehole interval is lowered through a previously installed casing of an upper borehole interval. As a consequence of this procedure the casing of the lower interval is of smaller diameter than the casing of the upper interval. Thus, the casings are in a nested arrangement with casing diameters decreasing in downward direction. Cement annuli are provided between the outer surfaces of the casings and the borehole wall to seal the casings from the borehole wall. As a consequence of this nested arrangement a relatively large borehole diameter is required at the upper part of the wellbore. Such a large borehole diameter involves increased costs due to heavy casing handling equipment, large drill bits and increased volumes of drilling fluid and drill cuttings. Moreover, increased drilling rig time is involved due to required cement pumping, cement hardening, required equipment changes due to large variations in hole diameters drilled in the course of the well, and the large volume of cuttings drilled and removed.

The present invention is directed to overcoming one or more of the limitations of the existing procedures for forming and/or repairing wellbore casings.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

According to one aspect of the present invention, an apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes a tubular support member defining a first passage, a tubular expansion cone defining a second passage coupled to the tubular support member, a fluid driven motor coupled to the tubular expansion cone comprising an inlet, and a rotary expansion device coupled to the output shaft of the fluid driven motor. The first passage is operably coupled to the second passage, and the second passage is operably coupled to the inlet of the fluid driven motor.

According to another aspect of the present invention, an apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes a first expansion device for controllably straining the tubular member, and a second expansion device coupled to the first expansion device for controllably stressing the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, a method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes controllably straining the tubular member, and then controllably stressing the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, an apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes means for controllably straining the tubular member, and means for controllably stressing the tubular member after controllably straining the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, an apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes a first expansion device for radially expanding the tubular member, and a second expansion device coupled to the first expansion device for further radially expanding the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, a method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes radially expanding a portion of the tubular member, and then further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, a system for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes means for radially expanding a portion of the tubular member, and means for then further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, a method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes controllably stressing the tubular member; and then controllably straining the tubular member.

According to another aspect of the present invention, an apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member is provided that includes means for controllably stressing the tubular member; and means for controllably straining the tubular member after controllably stressing the tubular member.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a fragmentary cross sectional illustration of an exemplary embodiment of an apparatus for radially expanding a tubular member.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE ILLUSTRATIVE EMBODIMENTS

Referring to FIG. 1, an exemplary embodiment of an apparatus 100 for radially expanding a tubular member includes a tubular support member 102 that defines a passage 102 a. An end of an expansion mandrel 104 that defines a passage 104 a, a chamber 104 b, and a passage 104 c is coupled to an end of the tubular support member 102 that includes a tapered outer surface 104 d.

A conventional mud motor 106 is positioned within the chamber 104 b of the mandrel 104 that includes an rotable output shaft 106 a that extends out of the mandrel. In an exemplary embodiment, the inlet of the mud motor 106 is fluidicly coupled to the passage 104 a of the mandrel, and the outlet of the mud motor is fluidicly coupled to the passage 104 c of the mandrel. In this manner, the mud motor 106 may be operated to rotate the shaft 106 a upon pumping fluidic materials into and through the mud motor. A conventional rotary expansion tool 108 is coupled to an end of the shaft 106 a that may be any number of conventional commercially available rotary expansion devices such as, for example, the rotary expansion devices commercially available from Weatherford International or as described in one or more of the following: U.S. Pat. No. 6,457,532 and/or WO 02/081863 A1, the disclosures of which are incorporated herein by reference. In an exemplary embodiment, the rotary expansion tool 108 includes one or more circumferentially and/or axially spaced apart roller expansion elements 108 a.

The mandrel 104, the mud motor 106, and the rotary expansion tool 108 are housed within a tubular launcher assembly 110 that includes a shoe 110 a, a tubular section 110 b, and a tapered tubular section 110 c. In an exemplary embodiment, the tubular section 110 b of the tubular launcher assembly 110 mates with the mandrel 104 and the rotary expansion tool 108. An end of an expandable tubular 112 is coupled to the tapered tubular section 110 c of the launcher assembly 110. In an exemplary embodiment, one or more cup seals 114 are coupled to the exterior of the tubular support 102 for sealingly engaging the interior surface of the expandable tubular member 112.

In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus is initially positioned within a borehole 116 that traverses a subterranean formation 118. Fluidic materials 120 are then injected into the apparatus 100 through the passages, 102 a and 104 a. The fluidic materials 120 are then conveyed into and through the mud motor 106 and out of the mandrel 104 through the passage 104 c. As a result, the mud motor 106 is operated to thereby rotate the shaft 106 a and the rotary expansion tool 108. Also, as a result, the interior portion of the launcher 110 below the mandrel 104 is pressurized thereby causing the mandrel, mud motor 106, and the rotary expansion tool 108 to be displaced upwardly relative to the launcher 110.

The upward displacement of the mandrel 104, mud motor 106, and rotary expansion tool 108 then radially expands and plastically deforms at least the tubular section 110 b and the tapered tubular section 110 c of the launcher 110 and the expandable tubular member 112. In an exemplary embodiment, the tapered surface 104 d of the expansion mandrel 104 provides the majority of the radial expansion and plastic deformation of the tapered tubular section 110 c of the launcher 110 and the expandable tubular member 112. In an exemplary embodiment, the outside diameter of the rotary expansion tool 108 is adjustable and thereby permits the rotary expansion tool 108 to radially expand and plastically deform the expandable tubular member 112 into intimate contact with the walls of the borehole 114. As a result, the formation surrounding the expandable tubular member 112 may be compressed and, after the completion of the radial expansion and plastic deformation of the expandable tubular member, held in compression. In an exemplary embodiment, during the operation of the apparatus 100, the expansion mandrel 104 applies radial forces to contiguous circumferential interior surfaces of the tubular launcher assembly 110 and/or the expandable tubular member 112, and the rotary expansion tool 108 applies radial forces to discrete noncontiguous interior surfaces of the tubular launcher assembly and/or the expandable tubular member.

During the operation of the apparatus 100, in an exemplary embodiment, the expansion mandrel 104 provides a strain controlled radial expansion process, and the rotary expansion tool 108 provides a stress controlled radial expansion process. For example, the final inside diameter of the expandable tubular member 112 provided by operation of the expansion mandrel 104 is controlled by the shape and geometry of the expansion mandrel and should be constant. However, the final inside diameter of the expandable tubular member provided by operation of the rotary expansion tool 108 may, or may not, be constant depending upon the shape of the wellbore 116. In particular, the amount of strain of the expandable tubular member 112 provided by the rotary expansion tool 108 is not controlled. Rather, the amount of stress applied to the expandable tubular member 112 by the rotary expansion tool 108 is controlled by controlling the compliance of the roller expansion elements 108 a. Consequently, in an exemplary embodiment, the operation of the rotary expansion tool 108 will cause the outside diameter of the expandable tubular member 112 to engage and thereby match the inside diametrical shape of the wellbore 116. A strain controlled radial expansion process is typically capable of providing more radial expansion and plastic deformation than a stress controlled radial expansion process. However, a stress controlled radial expansion process is typically more capable of expanding a tubular member into engagement with an irregularly shaped wellbore 116. Consequently, the combination of a strain controlled expansion process with a stress controlled expansion process provides the benefits of both in one radial expansion process.

In several alternative embodiments, during the operation of the apparatus 100, the tubular support member 102, mandrel 104, and/or mud motor 106 are also rotated during the radial expansion and plastic deformation of the expandable tubular member 112. In several alternative embodiments, during the operation of the apparatus 100, the rotary expansion tool 108 is not rotated relative to the mandrel 104.

In an alternative embodiment, the expansion mandrel 104 is pulled upwardly relative to the tubular member 112 in combination with, or in substitution for, the injection of the fluidic material 120 during at least a portion of the radial expansion and plastic deformation of the tubular member.

In several exemplary embodiments, the interface between the expansion mandrel 104 and the tubular launcher assembly 110 and/or the expandable tubular member 112 is not fluid tight. As a result, the annulus defined between the cup seals 114 and the expansion mandrel 104 within the expandable tubular member 112 is pressurized such that the resulting axial force applied to the cup seals pulls the expansion mandrel 104 and the rotary expansion device 108 through the tubular launcher assembly 110 and/or the expandable tubular member 112.

In several alternative embodiments, the order and/or orientation of the expansion mandrel 104 and/or rotary expansion tool 108 may be reversed.

In several alternative embodiments, a conventional hydro-forming device may be substituted for, or used in addition to, the expansion mandrel 104.

In several alternative embodiments, the expansion mandrel 104 and/or the rotary expansion tool 108 are adjustable in size.

In several alternative embodiments, a conventional rotary expansion tool such as, for example, as described in U.S. Pat. No. 6,457,532 and/or WO 02/081863 A1, the disclosures of which are incorporated herein by reference, or any one of the commercially available rotary expansion tools available from Weatherford International, Inc. may be substituted for, or used in combination with, the expansion mandrel 104.

In several alternative embodiments, the exemplary embodiments of FIG. 1 are implemented using the methods and/or apparatus disclosed one or more of the following: (1) U.S. Pat. No. 6,497,289, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/454,139, attorney docket no. 25791.03.02, filed on Dec. 3, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/111,293, filed on Dec. 7, 1998, (2) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/510,913, attorney docket no. 25791.7.02, filed on Feb. 23, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/121,702, filed on Feb. 25, 1999, (3) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/502,350, attorney docket no. 25791.8.02, filed on Feb. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/119,611, filed on Feb. 11, 1999, (4) U.S. Pat. No. 6,328,113, which was filed as U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/440,338, attorney docket number 25791.9.02, filed on Nov. 15, 1999, which claims priority from provisional application 60/108,558, filed on Nov. 16, 1998, (5) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/169,434, attorney docket no. 25791.10.04, filed on Jul. 1, 2002, which claims priority from provisional application 60/183,546, filed on Feb. 18, 2000, (6) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/523,468, attorney docket no. 25791.11.02, filed on Mar. 10, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/124,042, filed on Mar. 11, 1999, (7) U.S. Pat. No. 6,568,471, which was filed as patent application Ser. No. 09/512,895, attorney docket no. 25791.12.02, filed on Feb. 24, 2000, which claims priority from provisional application 60/121,841, filed on Feb. 26, 1999, (8) U.S. Pat. No. 6,575,240, which was filed as patent application Ser. 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PCT/US04/______, attorney docket no. 25791.40.02, filed on Mar. 15, 2004, the disclosures of which are incorporated herein by reference.

An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes a tubular support member defining a first passage, a tubular expansion cone defining a second passage coupled to the tubular support member, a fluid driven motor coupled to the tubular expansion cone comprising an inlet, and a rotary expansion device coupled to the output shaft of the fluid driven motor. The first passage is operably coupled to the second passage, and the second passage is operably coupled to the inlet of the fluid driven motor.

An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes a first expansion device for controllably straining the tubular member, and a second expansion device coupled to the first expansion device for controllably stressing the tubular member. In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus further includes a motor coupled to the first expansion device for rotating the second expansion device relative to the first expansion device.

A method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes controllably straining the tubular member, and then controllably stressing the tubular member.

An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes means for controllably straining the tubular member, and means for controllably stressing the tubular member after controllably straining the tubular member.

An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes a first expansion device for radially expanding the tubular member, and a second expansion device coupled to the first expansion device for further radially expanding the tubular member. In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus further includes a motor coupled to the first expansion device for rotating the second expansion device relative to the first expansion device.

A method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes radially expanding a portion of the tubular member, and then further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member. In an exemplary embodiment, radially expanding the portion of the tubular member includes applying forces to a continuous circumferential portion of the interior surface of the tubular member. In an exemplary embodiment, further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member includes applying forces to one or more discrete portions of the interior surface of the tubular member.

A system for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes means for radially expanding a portion of the tubular member, and means for then further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member. In an exemplary embodiment, the means for radially expanding the portion of the tubular member includes means for applying forces to a continuous circumferential portion of the interior surface of the tubular member. In an exemplary embodiment, the means for further radially expanding the portion of the tubular member includes means for applying forces to one or more discrete portions of the interior surface of the tubular member.

A method of radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes controllably stressing the tubular member; and then controllably straining the tubular member.

An apparatus for radially expanding and plastically deforming a tubular member has been described that includes means for controllably stressing the tubular member; and means for controllably straining the tubular member after controllably stressing the tubular member.

It is understood that variations may be made in the foregoing without departing from the scope of the invention. For example, the teachings of the present illustrative embodiments may be used to provide a wellbore casing, a pipeline, or a structural support. Furthermore, the teachings of the present disclosure may incorporate one or more features or operational aspects of conventional hydro-forming tools.

Although illustrative embodiments of the invention have been shown and described, a wide range of modification, changes and substitution is contemplated in the foregoing disclosure. In some instances, some features of the present invention may be employed without a corresponding use of the other features. Accordingly, it is appropriate that the appended claims be construed broadly and in a manner consistent with the scope of the invention.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7607486 *Jul 30, 2007Oct 27, 2009Baker Hughes IncorporatedOne trip tubular expansion and recess formation apparatus and method
Classifications
U.S. Classification166/380, 166/207
International ClassificationE21B, E21B23/00, E21B43/10
Cooperative ClassificationE21B43/105
European ClassificationE21B43/10F1