|Publication number||USRE41173 E1|
|Application number||US 11/805,864|
|Publication date||Mar 30, 2010|
|Filing date||May 24, 2007|
|Priority date||Dec 3, 2002|
|Also published as||DE10355988A1, DE10355988B4, US7148812, US20040159430, US20070107903|
|Publication number||11805864, 805864, US RE41173 E1, US RE41173E1, US-E1-RE41173, USRE41173 E1, USRE41173E1|
|Inventors||Christopher David Baggs|
|Original Assignee||Vetco Gray Controls Limited|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (9), Non-Patent Citations (3), Referenced by (10), Classifications (10), Legal Events (3)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application claims the benefit of United Kingdom Patent Application No. 0228203.6, filed on Dec. 3, 2002, which hereby is incorporated by reference in its entirety.
The present invention relates to a system for use in controlling a hydrocarbon production well.
In the subsea fluid extraction industry, communication is required between a control centre and well heads located on the seabed. Traditionally, the control centre is located on a platform or vessel in relatively close proximity to the well complex. In some cases, the control centre is located on land, where the distance from the control centre to the well heads can be much greater and could be typically 200 km. High capacity communication systems, typically involving optical fibres, allow the possibility of much higher data rates between the subsea and surface facilities, which further enables methods of connecting subsea data sources (e.g. sensors), particularly those generating large quantities of data such as microseismic sensors and TV cameras.
A conventional approach is to use a standard subsea bus at the well head ends of a data transmission system to connect such various subsea data sources. This means that any other party providing equipment to the system has to interface with the bus and conform to its protocol, data rates and bus standards. Since different manufacturers have standard equipment with interfaces to a multiplicity of protocols and data rates, substantial costs are involved in adapting these interfaces to suit the standard bus. Furthermore, since this data is time multiplexed on the bus, the data rates are also somewhat limited such that some desirable, high bandwidth, data transmissions, such as digital video signals, cannot be economically transmitted.
When the surface computer 6 is located at a considerable distance, such as, typically, 200 km from the well complex, a fibre optic link is used as link 8 to transmit data between the or each SEM at a well tree to the surface computer 6. Nevertheless, the data from other sources at port 5 needs to be adapted to the protocol, data rates and other standards used for the communication of control information and sensor information.
According to the present invention, there is provided a system for use in controlling a hydrocarbon production well, comprising computing means at a control location remote from a well tree of the well. The system also has a well tree means has a processing means for applying control signals to and receiving signals from devices of the well tree. The well tree means includes means for receiving further signals associated with the operation of the well. A bi-directional communication link exists between said computing means and said well tree means.
The well tree means further comprises a communications router coupled with said processing means and said receiving means, for multiplexing said signals from devices at the well head and said further signals on to said bi-directional link. The bi-directional link could comprise a fibre optics link.
There could be a plurality of such well tree means at respective well trees, there being a distribution means between said bi-directional link and the well tree means for distributing control signals to said well tree means and receiving multiplexed signals from said well tree means.
The signals from devices at the well head and further signals could have different protocols and different data speeds. The further signals could include video signals.
The present invention also comprises a combination of a system according to the invention providing a first communication channel, and a further such system, providing a second communication channel for use if the first channel fails.
The present invention will now be described, by way of example, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
Typical of the above-mentioned private, standard interfaces are the intelligent well system interface, (IWS) (an Ethernet interface), and others as shown in
Two separate communication channels are provided, A and B, to provide 100% redundancy. Describing channel A, a surface computer 6 at the control centre (on shore or on a platform for example) feeds and receives data to and from an SMU 14 which houses two bi-directional optical modems 15 and 16.
The optical modems 15 and 16 interface with respective ones of a pair of optical fibres 17 and 18, which terminate near to a well head complex at a communication electronics module (CEM) 19 typically located on the seabed. Typically, the communication link provided by the optical fibres could be about 200 km, data being transmitted via them at typically 10 Mbits/sec. The CEM 19 enables interfacing of many wells in the locality with the optical fibres 17 and 18. The use of two optical fibres provides further redundancy and thus greater communications reliability. The CEM 19 houses another two bi-directional optical modems 20 and 21 coupled with respective ones of fibres 17 and 18 and which output electrical signals to a communications router 22. The communications router 22 interfaces with electrical modems, of which three, 23, 24 and 25 are shown, by way of example, each of which interfaces with a modem of a SEM at a well tree. Thus, for example, the modem 23 interfaces with a modem 7 of a SEM 1 via a communication link 26 and with the modems at other trees within the group via a communication link 27 and modems 24 and 25 interface with modems at other groups of trees via communication links 28 and 29.
It should be noted that each of modems 23, 24, 25, etc. and each of the corresponding modems at the well tree SEM's, may, alternatively, be of the form that communicates via the electrical power supply to the tree, i.e. a comms-on-power (COP) type of modem.
While the invention has been shown in only a few of its forms, it should be apparent to those skilled in the art that it is not so limited but is susceptible to various changes without departing from the scope of the invention.
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|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US7845404||Sep 4, 2008||Dec 7, 2010||Fmc Technologies, Inc.||Optical sensing system for wellhead equipment|
|US7967066 *||May 9, 2008||Jun 28, 2011||Fmc Technologies, Inc.||Method and apparatus for Christmas tree condition monitoring|
|US8511389 *||Oct 20, 2010||Aug 20, 2013||Vetco Gray Inc.||System and method for inductive signal and power transfer from ROV to in riser tools|
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|US20120097383 *||Oct 20, 2010||Apr 26, 2012||Vetco Gray, Inc.||System and Method for Inductive Signal and Power Transfer from ROV to In Riser Tools|
|U.S. Classification||340/853.7, 340/854.7, 340/853.1|
|International Classification||E21B33/035, H04B10/25, G01V3/00|
|Cooperative Classification||E21B33/0355, H04B10/25|
|European Classification||H04B10/25, E21B33/035C|
|Apr 20, 2010||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Jun 12, 2014||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8
|Mar 27, 2015||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: GE OIL & GAS UK LIMITED, UNITED KINGDOM
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:VETCO GRAY CONTROLS LIMITED;REEL/FRAME:035316/0821
Effective date: 20150224