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Publication numberUS3189316 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 15, 1965
Filing dateMay 11, 1962
Priority dateMay 11, 1962
Publication numberUS 3189316 A, US 3189316A, US-A-3189316, US3189316 A, US3189316A
InventorsPreston Jr Dan C
Original AssigneeBaker Oil Tools Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Subsurface apparatus for inducing flow of fluids in well formations
US 3189316 A
Abstract  available in
Images(3)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 15, 1965 D. c. PRESTON, JR 3,189,315

SUBSURFACE APPARATUS FOR INDUCING FLOW OF FLUIDS IN WELL FORMATIONS Filed May 11. 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 F 0. 1. Ida. 2,

Dav C. P955 Tom/J.

INVENTOR.

D. c. PRESTON, JR 3,189,316 SUBSURFACE APPA US FOR INDUCING FLOW 0F FLUIDS WELL FORMATIONS June 15, 1965 Filed May 11. 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR.

Fo. 5 a;

a M0 L DAD/V 6. P255 TOMJQ IIIIIIIII N7 A7; M V

BY www June 15, 1965 D. c. PRESTON JR 3,189,316

. SUBSURFACE APP NDUC A US FOR '1 FLOW OF FLUIDS WELL FORMATI Filed May 11. 1962 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 45. 55 TI 89 t. H

DAW C. PRLSTO JR. INVENTOR.

United States Patent 3189 316 SUBSURFACE APPARATris FOR INDUCING new or FLUIDS IN WELL FonMATroNs Dan C. Preston, .lr., Whittier, Calif assignor to Baker The present invention relates to subsurface well bore apparatus, and more particularly to subsurface valve apparatus adapted to control flow of fluids in the well bore.

In-the flow of production into a well bore, or in injecting water, and the like, into formations in the performance of secondary or tertiary recovery operation, pipe perforations in the well bore or the face of the formations become plugged with sand, silt, or other substances, restricting fluid flow between the formation and the well bore.

An object of the present invention is to provide an improved valve apparatus adapted to be opened to create a high pressure differential which will cause a sudden high velocity flow of the formation fluid through the pipe perforatons and into the well bore, thereby carrying sand, silt, and the like, into the pipe for elevation to the top of the hole. As a result, the formation and the pipe perforations are washed or cleared, facilitating subsequent well production or the injection of secondary or tertiary recovery fluids into the formation.

Another object of the invention is to provide a valve apparatus adapted to be opened suddenly to induce flow of formation fluids into the well bore, the apparatus having a full unrestricted passage so that opening of the valve provides a maximum pressure differential capable of producing a high rate of fluid flow into the well bore.

A further object of the invention is to provide an improved valve apparatus adapted for incorporation in a tubular string disposed in a well bore, and useable as a formation testing valve, or a testing valve for deter mining the efficacy of a water shutoff or similar casing cementing job. The valve apparatus has an unrestricted passage therethrough when opened, allowing cement slurry, and the like, to be pumped through it readily, thereby obviating the need for withdrawing the apparatus from the well bore prior to performance of the cementing operation therewithin.

This invention possesses many other advantages, and has other objects which may be made more clearly apparent from a consideration of a form in which it may be embodied. This form is shown in the drawings accompanying and forming part of the present specification. It will now be described in detail, for the purpose of illustrating the general principles of the invention; but it is to be understood that such detailed description is not to be taken in a limiting sense, since the scopeof the invention is best defined by the appended claims.

Referring to the drawings:

FIGURE 1 is a combined longitudinal section and side elevational view of an apparatus embodying the invention disposed in a well casing, with the valve in its initial closed position;

FIG. 2 is a view similar to FIG. 1 illustrating the valve in its fully opened position;

FIGS. 3 and 3a together constitute a longitudinal section, on an enlarged scale, through the valve apparatus in the position shown in FIG. 1, FIG. 3a being a lower continuation of FIG. 3;

FIG. 4 is a cross-section taken along the line 44 on FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a cross-section taken along the line 55 on FIG. 3;

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FIG. 6 is a cross-section taken along the line 6-6 on FIG. 3a;

FIG. 7 is an enlarged cross-section taken along the line 7-7 on FIG. 3a; FIG. 8 is an enlarged section, parts being shown in side elevation, of the movable valve member in its open position, such as disclosed in FIG. 2.

The apparatus A illustrated in the drawings is a valve device adapted to be connected to a tubular string B, such as tubing or drill pipe, by means of which it is lowered in a well casing D. The lower portion of thevalve device is connected directly or through a suitable length of tubing to a lower packer C of any suitable type, typically a set down type of packer adapted to be anchored in packedoff condition in the well casing against downward movement therewithin, for the purpose of supporting the annular column of fluid above the packer C between the tubular string B and the wall of the well casing D. The hydrostatic head of this annular column of fluid is prevented from acting upon a lower well formation (not shown). Ordinarily, the well packer will be set in the well casing above this well formation, or above perforations communicating with the formation. Well production may be capable of flowing from the formation through the perforations (not shown) into the well bore for upward movement through the well packer C and the valve apparatus A, when open, into the tubular string B. Conversely, when the valve is open, fluent materials can be pumped down the tubing string B and through the valve A and packer C for discharge under pressure through the casing perforations into the formation. Such fluids may be properly conditioned water, gas, or high pressure steam used in secondary or tertiary recovery operations.

The valve apparatus is disposed initially in the closed position illustrated in FIG. 1 and FIGS. 3, 3a. By appropriate manipulation of the tubular string B, it can be opened fully and placed in the condition illustrated in FIG. 2, in which there is a substantially unrestricted passage completely through the valve apparatus.

As shown, the valve apparatus A includes an outer generally tubular housing 10 comprising a lower head 11 threaded into the lower end of the main body 12 of the housing, the upper end of which is threadedly attached to a sub 13 having an upper threaded box 14 for attachment to the lower end of the tubular string B which extends to the top of the well bore. Mounted within the housing is an inner tubular member 15 adapted to be secured to the tubular body 16 of the well packer C disposed therebelow, the well packer parts being initially in,retracted position to allow, lowering of the apparatus through the well casing in which it is to be disposed. As shown somewhat diagrammatically in FIG. 1, only the rubber or rubber-like packing'element 17 of the well packer is illustrated, and this is shown as having already been sealed off against the wall of the well casing D. It is to be understood, however, that usually such a packer will also have lower slips (not shown), or the like, adapted to be anchored in the wall of the well casing to prevent downward movement of the well packer in the well casing, and also to resist rotation of the packer body 16 and of the inner tubular member 15 connected thereto, as by means of the intervening coupling 18. i i

For the purpose of being able to operate some types of well packers secured to the lower portion of the valve apparatus, which require the imparting of a rotary motion to the packer body 16 (a fraction of a revolution, or more than one revolution), a clutch device 19 is provided between the outer housing 10 and the inner tubular member 15. Since relative rotation between these members is also required to actuate the valve apparatus, as described hereinbelow, the clutch is of the one-way type. As disclosed, the outer portion of the inner member 15 is formed with one or opposed grooves (FIG. 6), the base 21 of which extends as a chord across the inner tubular member, terminating in a generally radial shoulder 22. The lower portion of the housing head 11 has a radial slot 23 therein receiving a clutch dog or pin 24 urged into one of the grooves 21 of the inner member by a spring 25, disclosed as a C spring, fitting within a peripheral groove 26 in the head 11 and also within an outer groove 27 in the pin or clutch dog element. The C spring is prevented from shifting circumferentially off the clutch dog 24 by locating its ends in slightly spaced relation to a stop member 28 suitably welded in the base of the head groove 26 containing the C spring.

As shown in the drawings, and particularly in FIG. 6, right-hand rotation of the tubular string B and of the housing 10 will rotate the pin 24 with it in a clockwise direction, the pin sliding along the base 21 of a groove 20, which cams or forces the pin outwardly against the retracting force of the C spring 25, the pin then being able to turn on the periphery of the inner tubular member 15 until it snaps into the opposite groove 20, then being 'cammed outwardly by its inner base or cam surface 21.

Thus, the pin or dog 24 ratchets into and out of the grooves 20 under the restraining force of the spring 25, permitting right-hand rotation of the housing member 10 relative to the inner tubular member 15.

Left-hand rotation of the tubular string B and housing member 10 causes the pin 24 to engage one of the generally radial shoulders 22 at an end of a groove 2% and couple the housing 10 and inner tubular member 15 together for joint left-hand rotation. Thus, left-hand turning of the tubular string B and housing 10 will effect corresponding left-hand turning of the inner tubular member 15 and of the packer body 16 secured to the latter for the purpose of actuating a control mechanism (not shown) which forms part of the lower packer.

Usually, in rotating the tubular string B, as to the right, for the purpose of actuating the valve mechanism A in the manner described hereinbelow, it is also desirable to impose a downweight on the packer C to be assured of its remaining anchored in packed-off condition. To facilitate rotation despite the transmission of downweight from the housing 10 to the inner tubular member 15, a thrust bearing 30 is placed between the housing and the inner tubular member. As shown, a thrust member or bearing support 31 is threadedly secured on the inner tubular member 15, forming a support for a lower race 32 of a roller thrust bearing assembly, there being generally radially arranged roller elements 33 adapted to ride around on the lower race which are engaged by an upper race 34 hearing against the lower surface of the housing head 11. With the imposition of a downwardly directed thrust on the tubular string B and housing 16, relative rotation between the housing and the inner tubular member 15 can readily occur because of the minimizing of frictional resistance to turning afforded by the roller thrust bearing 30.

The valve apparatus A is initially placed in a closed position and is held in such closed position until its opening is required. As shown, the inner tubular member 15 nas a ring 35 mounted thereon capable of moving axially :o a slight extent. Thus, the ring has a longitudinal hole 56 therethrough slidably receiving a pin 37 mounted in an aligned bore 38 in the inner tubular member. Opposite the location of the pin, the ring 35 is cut away to provide a space adapted to receive bifurcated arms 39 ntegral with a flapper valve head 40 pivotally mounted 3n the ring. As shown, the arms 39 have aligned pas- ;ages 41 therethrough receiving a pivot or hinge pin 42 vhich'extends through the arm holes and through aligned ioles 43 in the ring. A spring 44 constantly urges the lalve head 40 toward an upward position, the spring eing coiled around the hinge pin 42 between the arms 39 and having one arm 45 hearing against the lower face of the flapper valve head 40 and its other arm 46 extending slidably downwardly into a longitudinal hole 47 in the inner tubular member 15. The ability of the spring arm 26 to slide in the hole 47 and the ring 35 on the pin 37 allows some joint longitudinal movement of the ring 35 and the flapper valve head 49 away from and toward the inner tubular member 15. When in its initially closed position substantially normal to the axis of the apparatus, the rear face 48 of the valve head can bear against a companion surface 49 on the ring 35 surrounding its passage 59, so as to provide a backing for the valve head 40 and prevent its downward movement.

The valve head 40 initially closes the passage 51 through the inner tubular member and also a continuation of this passage extending through a valve sleeve 52 disposed above the head it). The upper face of the valve head has its outer portion 53 beveled or tapered for engagement with a companion valve seat 54 at the lower end of the sleeve. If desired, a suitable packing or seal ring 54 may be provided in the lower end of the sleeve 52 against which the companion tapered surface 53 of the valve head can seat to make a leakproof seal therebetween.

Fluid pressure in the inner tubular member passage 51 is acting on the valve head 40, tending to urge it upwardly against its companion seat 54 on the sleeve 52, also tending to shift the sleeve 52 upwardly. The sleeve, however, is initially prevented from moving upwardly by a releasable latch or lock sleeve 55 located in an annular space 56 between the valve sleeve 52 and the housing 16, the lower portion of the lock sleeve 55 being threadedly or otherwise suitably secured to the inner tubular member 15, in effect forming an upper part thereof. The upper portion of the latch or lock sleeve 55 has a plurality of circumferentially spaced longitudinally extending slots 57 opening through its upper end and forming spring-like arms 58 terminating in upper inwardly directed latch fingers 59. These fingers initially engage a cylindrical backing surface 60 on the interior of a control or holding sleeve 61 surrounding the fingers and arms and having an upper external thread 62 meshing with an internal thread 63 formed in the upper end of the housing 10. The upper end of the fingers are adjacent to a downwardly facing shoulder 64 on the control or holding sleeve 61 when the latter is in its initial lower position within the housing 10, which confines the fingers 59 to an inward position overlapping the upper end 65 of the valve sleeve 52 and preventing it from moving upwardly. Preferably, the upper end 65 of the valve sleeve is tapered in an upward and inward direction, engaging companion lower tapered surfaces 66 on the fingers 59, so that upward thrust of the valve sleeve 52 tends to cam the fingers 59 in a lateral outward direction.

The parts are so arranged that when the control or holding sleeve 61 is in its lower position, such as disclosed in FIGS. 1 and 3, the fingers 59 are Within the constricting confines of the cylindrical backing surface 60 of the control sleeve and adjacent to its downwardly facing shoulder 64, the valve sleeve 52 being incapable of moving upwardly sufficiently to disengage its valve seat 54 from the valve head 40. Any slight upward movement of the valve sleeve 52 to bring its upward tapered end 65 against the fingers 59 is accompanied by a follow up of the valve head 40 and ring 35, on which the valve head is mounted, to

' maintain the sealing engagement of the valve head against its companion seat 54.

The control or holding sleeve 61 is prevented from rotating relative to the latch or lock sleeve 55, but is movable longitudinally therealong, as in an upward direction. To enable this action to occur, a key 67 is secured, as by welding, to an inner lower portion of the control sleeve, this key extending into one of the slots 57 between adjacent arms 58, thereby forming a slidable splined connection between the latch or lock sleeve 55 and the control sleeve 61. To insure against inadvertent rotation between the control sleeve 61 and the housing 10, the two may be releasably secured to one another initially by one or more shear screws 68.

The fluid pressure in the well formation below the packer 17 is capable of being transmitted through the fluid in the packer and in the inner tubular member 15 and of passing around the valve head 40 into the annular space between the valve sleeve 52 and the latch or lock sleeve 55. This fluid pressure is capable of acting on the valve sleeve 52, tending to shift it in an upward direction along the latch or lock sleeve. However, the engagement of the upper end 65 of the valve sleeve with the fingers 59 precludes such upward movement. When the valve is to be opened, the action of thefluid pressure on the valve sleeve 52 is availed of to shift the latter upwardly after it has been released from the fingers 59, as explained hereinbelow. The latch or lock sleeve 55 has an inwardly directed upper cylinder head 70 slidable against a periphery of the valve sleeve 52, and the valve sleeve has an outwardly directed annular piston 71 slidable against the inner Wall of a cylinder portion 72 of the latch or lock sleeve. A suitable side seal ring 73 is mounted in the cylinder head 70 for slidable sealing against the periphery of the valve sleeve 52, and the piston carries a suitable side seal ring 74 adapted to sealingly engage against the inner wall of the latch or lock sleeve cylinder 72. The longitudinal space 75 between the cylinder head 70 and piston 71 and between the periphery of the valve sleeve 52 and of the cylinder portion 72 of the latch or lock sleeve is confined and initially contains air at atmospheric pressure. The well bore fluid pressure can act over the area of the annular piston 71 and urge the sleeve 52 in an upward direction.

The internal diameter 76 of the control or holding sleeve 61 below its cylindrical backing surface 60 is greater than the internal diameter of the backing surface, providing a space 77 below the latter into which the fingers 5h can expand outwardly upon upward movement of a control sleeve sufliciently to free the backing surface from the fingers, thereby allowing the valve sleeve 52 to move upwardly. Upward shifting of the control or holding sleeve .61 occurs as a result of rotating the tubular string B and housing to the right. The well packer C will have been previously set and thereby prevents rotation of the inner tubular member connected to the packer body 16 and also of the latch or lock sleeve 55 secured to the lower inner tubular member 15. Since the control or holding sleeve 61 is slidably splined to the latch sleeve 55, it also is prevented from rotating. Accordingly, the exertion of sufficient torque on the tubular string B and the housing 10 will first shear the screws 68 and will then rotate the housing 10 relative to the inner tubular member 15, latch or lock sleeve 55, and the control sleeve 61 splined thereto. Since the threaded connection 63, 62 between the upper portion of the housing 10 and the control sleeve 61 is right-hand, the control sleeve will feed upwardly as a result of rotation of the housing 10 therearound until the smaller internal diameter backing surface 60 moves upwardly from engagement with the fingers 5h, whereupon the latter can shift outwardly into the enlarged diameter portion 76 of the control sleeve (FIG. 2), freeing the fingers from the upper end 65 of the sleeve and allowing the fluid pressure to shift the sleeve 52 upwardly to its fullest extent, the fluid pressure acting over the annular area of the piston 71.

The sleeve 52 can move upwardly until a stop flange 8t) thereon engages the cylinder head 70, at which time a downwardly facing shoulder 81 on the lower portion of the valve sleeve will be disposed above a lock pin 82 mounted in a radial bore 83 in the latch sleeve 55 and urged inwardly for positioning under the shoulder 81 and in engagement with the smaller diameter periphery 84 of the valve sleeve by a spring device 85, such as a C spring (FIG. 5), mounted in a peripheral groove 86 in the latch sleeve and engaging the lock pin. Arcuate shifting of the C spring 85 from engagement with the lock pin 82 is prevented by a suitable stop 87, such as a weld deposit, on the base of the groove 86 which will he engaged by either end of the C spring before the opposite end of the C spring can move from full engagment with the lock pin.

When the valve sleeve 52 shifts upwardly, following release of the holding fingers 59, the valve head spring 44 shifts the valve head 40 upwardly and fully to one side of the passage through the valve sleeve and the inner tubular member, such as disclosed in FIG. 2. As stated above, the lock pin 82 prevents downward or lowering movement of the valve sleeve 52 by being disposed under its shoulder 81. Similarly, the head 40 is prevented from bouncing or inadvertently shifting back to a position across the central passage 51 through the inner tubular member 15 by one or a plurality of detents mounted in the ring 35. As shown, the arms 39 have aligned sockets 9% opening through their outer faces, the ring having bores 91 therein closed at their outer portions by spring seats 92 against which helical compression springs 93 bear, the inner end of each compression spring bearing against a detent pin 94 and urging the latter against an adjacent valve head arm 39. When the valve head 48 is disposed across the passage 51, as shown in FIG. 1, the arm sockets 9% are disposed substantially under the hinge pin 42 or about degrees removed from the detents 94, the latter merely bearing against the outer surfaces of the flapper valve arms 39; When the spring 44 shifts the flapper valve head about the axis of the hinge pin 42 to the fully opened position disclosed in FIG. 2, the arm sockets 96' are swung into alignment with the detents 94, which are then shifted by the springs 93 into the sockets, thereby locking the valve head 4t) in its upper fully open position, such as disclosed in FIGS. 2 and 8, precluding return movement of the valve head 46 to any extent to- ;Ward its position across the central passage through the valve mechanism.

To guard against leakage between the valve parts, a suitable side seal ring 95 is mounted in the upper portion of the housing It and sealingly engages the opposed wall of the housing sub 13. Similarly, the housing has a suitable side seal ring 96 mounted thereon which sealingly engages against the periphery of the latch or lock sleeve 55. Leakage between the inner tubular member 15 and the lower housing head 11 is prevented by mounting a suitable side seal ring 97 in the latter engaging the periphery of the inner tubular member. Leakage through the threaded connection between the main body 12 of the housing and its lower head 11 is prevented by a side seal 215g 98 on the latter engaging the inner Wall of the body The valve apparatus has a variety of uses in a well bore.

It may function as a stimulation valve for the purpose of imposing a sudden shock on a well formation, creating a high velocity flow of fluid from the formation into the well bore and through casing or liner perforations, or the like, that might be disposed in the well bore. The sudden How of fluid into the well bore created by the opening of the valve apparatus A induces a rush of fluid from the formation into the well bore, carrying sand, silt, and other foreign substances, that may have partially or fully plugged the perforations, out of the perforations, fully cleaning the latter, and allowing free movement of fluid from the formation into the well, or, if the apparatus disclosed is to be used for secondary or tertiary recovery purposes, allowing fluid-like materials to be subsequently pumped down the tubing string B, through the apparatus A and the well packer C, and into the formation.

The well packer C is connected to the lower portion of the valve apparatus A, with the valve packer parts in retracted position. The upper portion of the valve apparatus is connected to a lower end of the tubular spring B and the assembly lowered in the well casing D to the proper depth, which may, for example, be one in which the well I packer C is disposed immediately above the casing perforations. The tubular string 3 may be dry, being maintainedin this dry state during lowering of the apparatus through fluid in the well bore because of the closing of the valve head 40 against its companion seat 54, the valve parts then being in the relative positions disclosed in FIG. 1 and FIGS. 3 and 3a, in which the latch fingers 59 are disposed across the upper end 65 of the valve sleeve 52. When the region in the well casing is reached at which the well packer C is to be set, and assuming that its release for downward setting requires a left-hand turning movement of the tubular string B, such left-hand motion is transmitted from the tubular string, through the housing 19, and through the clutch dog 24 and a generally radial shoulder 22 to the inner tubular member 35, and then to the packer body 16. Following release of the packer for setting, a suitable downweight may be imposed on the tubular string B for the purpose of anchoring the well packer in packed-01f condition in the well casing against downward movement therewithin, and sealing of, the annular space between the packer body and the wall of the Well casing.

The valve apparatus A is now to be opened. Such opening occurs as a result of turning the tubular string B to the right, which effects a corresponding turning of the housing 10. However, the set well packer C is preventing rotation of the inner tubular member 15 and of the latch sleeve 55 connected thereto, as well as of the control or holding sleeve 61 sl-idably splined to the latch sleeve. The housing It can turn to the right since the one-way clutch element 24 will merely ratchet into and out of the opposed grooves 20 formed in the inner tubular member 15. The turning of the housing relative to the control or holding sleeve first shears the screws 1% and then effects an upward shifting of the control sleeve 61 with respec to the housing and also with respect to the latch sleeve arms 58 and fingers 5%, until the cylindrical holding portion 68 of the sleeve is above the fingers, whereupon the upward thrust of the valve sleeve 52 shifts the fingers 59 outwardly into the enlarged diameter portion '76 of the holding sleeve 61, and out of the way, the fluid pressure acting on the annular piston 71 of the sleeve and moving the sleeve 52 to its upward position, determined by engage ment of its stop flange S9 with the cylinder head 7%), at which time the lock pin 82 shifts under the sleeve shoulder 81 to prevent lowering movement of the sleeve 5'2. The upward shifting of the sleeve 52 moves it above the path of outward swinging movement of the valve head it under 7 the action of the fluid pressure and of the spring 44, the

valve head shifting to one side and being latched in such open position by the detents 9d.

The well formation has a certain pressure, whereas, the suddenly opened valve A above the valve head 4% and the tubular string 13 has only an atmospheric pressure. The pressure of the fluid in the well casing around the tubing string B is prevented from being imposed on the formation by the sealing action of the well packer C between the packer body 16 and the wall of the weil casing D. Accordingly, there is a very large pressure differential between the formation and the tubular string, resulting in a sudden rush of the formation fluid at a high velocity from the formation into the well bore, and if the casing is perforated, through its perforations, thoroughly cleaning the perforations, the fluid flowing upwardly through the packer C and through the fully open valve apparatus A into the tubular string B.

When the flow of fluid has ceased, the well packer can be released in a known manner, as by taking an upward pull on the tubular string B, the housing It? and the inner tubular member 15, the sand, silt, and the like, that may have plugged the face of the formation, or the casing perforations, or both, having been cleaned from such regions. The entire apparatus may, if desired, now be removed from the well casing.

If desired, the apparatus may be allowed to remain in the Well casing with the packer C set in packed-oil condition. If the flow of the formation fluid has been extensive enough as to carry the silt, sand, and the like, upwardly through the tubing string to the top of the hole for disposal, other fluids, such as treated water, may be dumped down the tubular string B and through the valve apparatus A and the well packer C for injection into the formation, the casing perforations and the face of the formation being relatively clear, allowing the water, or other fluid, to be pumped thereinto.

The apparatus A can also be used as a formation tester, if desired, by lowering it in its closed position in the well casing D on the tubular string B and connected to a suitable packer C therebelow. After the packer has been set in packed-off condition in the well casing, the valve A can be opened suddenly and fluid allowed to rise in the tubular string B, thereby giving an indication of the productivity of the well.

If desired, the same apparatus can be used to test a casing cement job to determine the fact of a water shutoff. It is lowered in the well casing to the desired point at which the packer is to be set, whereupon the latter is set and the valve then opened. Any water seeping into the well casing because of a defective cement job will be noted by the usual upward movement of the water through the well packer and the valve apparatus into the tubular string, which will push the air in the tubular string upwardly ahead of it. The flow of air from the upper end of the tubular string can be observed. If the cementing job is defective, the apparatus need not be removed from the well casing. A suitable cement slurry, or the like, can be pumped down the tubular string B and out through the well packer C in set condition and into the previously set and hardened cement, and the formation along which the latter has been deposited, thereby plugging any channels in the previous cement job. The well packer can then be released and the apparatus withdrawn from the Well casing.

I claim:

It. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively rotatable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; valve means sealingly mounted in said passage for controlling fluid flow through said passage including a valve seat element and a valve head element engageable with said seat element to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging one of said elements to maintain said elements coengaged; said one element being movable with respect to said members and with respect to the other of said elements; means responsive to rotation of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said one element; means preventing said other of said elements from moving with said one element, following release of said latch means, to enable said elements to disengage from one another; and means for moving said one element following release of said latch means for opening said passage.

2. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively movable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; valve means sealingly mounted in said passage for controlling fluid flow through said passage including a valve seat element and a valve head element engageable with said seat element to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging one of said elements to maintain said elements coengaged; said one element being movable with respect to said members and with respect to the other of said elements; means responsive to move ment of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said one element; means preventing said other of said elements from moving with said one element, following release of said latch means, to enable said elements to disengage from one another; and means for moving said one element following release of said latch means for opening said passage. l

3. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively rotatable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat, said sleeve being movable within said passage with respect to said members; a valve head engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to maintain said head and valve seat coengaged; means responsive to retation of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from i i one another; and means for moving said sleeve following release of said latch means for opening said passage.

4. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member Within said outer member, said members being relatively movable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat, said sleeve being movable within said passage with respect to said members; a valve head engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to maintain said head and valve seat coengaged; means responsive to movement of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from one another; and means for moving said sleeve following release of said latch means for opening said passage.

5. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being rotatable relative to each other and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a sleeve sealingly and movably mounted in one of said members and having a valve seat; a valve head pivotally carried by one of said members and engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent disengaging movement of said sleeve from said valve head; means responsive to rotation of said member which is connectible to the tubular string by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; and means for moving said sleeve longitudinally away from said head.

6. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being movable relative to each other and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a sleeve sealingly and movably mounted in one of said members and having a valve seat; a valve head pivotally carried by one of said members and engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent disengaging movement of said sleeve from said valve head; means responsive to movement of said member which is connectible to the tubular string by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; and means for moving said sleeve longitudinally away from said head.

7. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubusaid elements coengaged; said one element being movable other member for releasing said latch means from said lar member within said outer member, said members being rotatable relative to each other and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a sleeve sealingly and movably mounted in one of said members and having a valve seat; a valve head pivotally carried byone of said members and engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent disengaging movement of said sleeve from said valve head; means responsive to rotation of said member which is connectible to the tubular string by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said. latch means from said sleeve; means for moving said sleeve longitudinally away from said head; and means for swinging said valve head laterally to one side of said passage upon movement of said sleeve away from said head.

8. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively rotatable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; valve means sealingly mounted in said passage for controlling fluid flow through said passage including a valve seat element and a valve head element engageable with said seat element to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging one of said elements to maintain with respect to said members and with respect to the other of said elementsemeans responsive to rotation of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said one element; means preventing said other of said elements from moving with said one element, following release of said latch means, to enable said elements to disengage from one another; means for moving said one element following release of said latch means for opening said passage; and means for shifting said valve head element laterally to one side of said passage upon disengagement of said elements from each other.

9. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively movable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat and movable upwardly with respect to said members; a valve head below said seat engageable therewith to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent upward movement of said sleeve and to maintain said sleeve seat engaged with said head; means responsive to movement of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from one another; and means for moving said sleeve upwardly following release of said latch means for opening said passage.

16. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being movable relative to each other and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a sleeve sealingly and movably mounted in one of said members movable upwardly with respect to said members and having a valve seat; a valve head below said sleeve pivotally carried by one of said members and engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent upward movement of said sleeve and disengagement of its seatfrom said valve head; means responsive to movement of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; and means for moving said sleeve ll upwardly with respect to said members away from said head.

11. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively movable and having a passage therethrough one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat and movable upwardly with respect to said members; a valve head below said seat engageable therewith to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent upward movement of said sleeve and to maintain said sleeve seat engaged with said head; means responsive to movement of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means for said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from one another; means for moving said sleeve upwardly following release of said latch means for opening said passage; and means for shifting said valve head upwardly and laterally to one side of said passage upon upward movement of said sleeve from said head.

12. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being movable relative to each other and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a sleeve sealingly and movably mounted in one of said members and having a valve seat; a valve head below said sleeve pivotally carried by one of said members and engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent upward movement of said sleeve and disengagement of its seat from said valve head; means responsive to move 'through, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat; a valve head engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to maintain said head and valve seat coengaged; means responsive to rotation of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from one another; and hydraulically operable means responsive to pressure of fluid in one of said tubular members for shifting said sleeve away from said head upon release of said latch means from said sleeve.

14. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively movable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat; a valve head below said seat engageable therewith to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to prevent upward move ment of said sleeve and to maintain said sleeve seat engaged with said head; means responsive to movement of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from one another; hydraulically operable means responsive to the pressure of fluid in one of said tubular members for shif ing said sleeve upwardly away from said head upon release of said latch means from said sleeve; and means for shifting said valve head upwardly and laterally to one side of said passage upon upward movement of said sleeve from said head.

15. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member; said members being relatively movable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connected to the tubular string; a valve seat sealingly and movably mounted in said inner member; a valve head carried by said inner member and engaging said seat to close said passage; a latch on said inner member engaging said seat to prevent its disengagement from said head; a control member holding said latch engaged with said seat; coengaging means on said outer member and control member operable in response to relative movement between said inner and outer members for shifting said control member from holding relation to said latch to permit release of said latch from said element; means preventing said head from moving with said seat, following release of said latch, to enable said seat to disengage from said head; and means for moving said seat following release of said latch for opening said passage.

16. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member; said members being relatively rotatable with respect to each other and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connected to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly and movably mounted in said inner member and having a valve seat; a valve head carried by said inner member and engaging said seat to close said passage; a latch on said inner member engaging said seat to prevent its disengagement from said head; a control member holding said latch engaged with said seat; coengaging threaded means on said outer member and control member operable in response to relative rotation between said inner and outer tubular members for shifting said control member from holding relation to said latch to permit release of said latch from said sleeve; means preventing said head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch, to enable said seat to disengage from said head; and means for moving said sleeve following release of said latch for opening said passage.

17. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively rotatable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; valve means sealingly mounted in said passage for controlling fluid flow through said passage including a valve seat element and a valve head element engageable with said seat element to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging one of said elements to maintain said elements coengaged; means responsive to rotation of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other member for releasing said latch means from said one element; means preventing said other of said elements from moving with said one element, following release of said latch means, to enable said elements to disengage from one another; means for moving said one element following release of said latch means for opening said passage; and one-way clutch means between said members for coupling said members for joint rotation when said one member is rotated in one direction by the tubular string and for allowing relative rotation between said members when said one member is rotated in the opposite direction by said tubular string.

18. In a valve adapted to be disposed in a well bore on a tubular string: an outer tubular member; an inner tubular member within said outer member, said members being relatively rotatable and having a passage therethrough, one of said members being connectible to the tubular string; a valve sleeve sealingly mounted in said passage and having a valve seat; a valve head engageable with said seat to close said passage; releasable latch means engaging said sleeve to maintain said head and valve seat coengaged; means responsive to rotation of said one member by the tubular string with respect to said other membet for releasing said latch means from said sleeve; means preventing said valve head from moving with said sleeve, following release of said latch means, to enable said sleeve and head to disengage from one another; means for moving said sleeve following release of said latch means for opening said passage; and one-way clutch means between said members for coupling said members for joint rotation when said one member is rotated in one direction by the tubular string and for allowing relative rotation between said members when said one member is rotated in the opposite direction by said tubular string.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,853,265 9/58 Clark 251-641 X M. CARY NELSON, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3360235 *Mar 5, 1965Dec 26, 1967Baker Oil Tools IncSubsurface tubular flow control apparatus
US4270606 *Mar 14, 1979Jun 2, 1981Baker International CorporationApparatus for selective disengagement of a fluid transmission conduit and for control of fluid transmission from a well zone
US4736791 *May 3, 1985Apr 12, 1988Develco, Inc.Subsurface device actuator requiring minimum power
US4878053 *Apr 14, 1988Oct 31, 1989Develco, Inc.Actuation method
US5445225 *Sep 2, 1994Aug 29, 1995Wiggins, Sr.; Merl D.Choke for enhanced gas and oil well production
US7255178 *Sep 10, 2003Aug 14, 2007Bj Services CompanyDrillable bridge plug
US7475736Nov 9, 2006Jan 13, 2009Bj Services CompanySelf centralizing non-rotational slip and cone system for downhole tools
US7600572Sep 13, 2006Oct 13, 2009Bj Services CompanyDrillable bridge plug
US7789156 *May 22, 2007Sep 7, 2010Renovus LimitedFlapper valve for use in downhole applications
US20140124212 *Nov 5, 2012May 8, 2014Gabriel A. SlupFlapper valve and method of valving a tubular
Classifications
U.S. Classification251/74, 251/341, 166/330, 166/316
International ClassificationE21B34/12, E21B34/00
Cooperative ClassificationE21B34/12, E21B2034/005
European ClassificationE21B34/12