Experimental Study on the Discharging Characteristics of Pulsed High-voltage Discharge Technology in Oil Plug Removal

Bingnan Yan, Jing Zhou, Zhao Liang, Liu Chongxin, Fanli Meng


Oil plugging of downhole during oilfield development leads to a decline in well yield. A new plug removal method based
on pulsed high-voltage discharge technology was proposed in this paper to solve this plugging problem. A low-carbon steel
high-pressure sealed drum was developed to simulate downhole operating environment with high static pressure. Four sealed
contact pins were designed on the drum cover. These pins were used to insert the high-voltage cable into drum body while
ensuring the leakproofness of the drum. The maximum static pressure borne by the drum was 40 MPa. An experimental
system of pulsed high-voltage discharge was designed based on the drum. A platform for discharging experiment was
established according to the system principle diagram. The effects of variation in static pressure on discharging voltage,
discharging current, critical breakdown field strength, discharging time and its data discretization, and other parameters were
determined with water and crude oil as the discharging media. Experimental results indicate that increasing static pressure
increases discharging time, enhances pulsed discharging randomness, reduces strength of impact waves generated in the
discharging media, and weakens fracture-generating effect on the cement tube. Increasing the working voltage is necessary
to achieve better plug removal. However, the requirements for size, texture, and insulativity of a plug removal equipment are
correspondingly elevated. This study provides a basis for the application of pulsed high-voltage discharge technology in oil
reservoir plug removal.


Plug Removal Technology, Pulsed High-Voltage Discharge, Static Pressure, Discharging Characteristic

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