Pulse Structural Monitoring (Pulse), an Acteon company, has provided a real-time wellhead fatigue monitoring system for drilling and well testing operations on the Lancaster Discovery, west of Shetland in the UK North Sea. The well operator, Hurricane Energy plc, wanted to check the wellhead fatigue model during drilling operations to prevent significant damage. Real-time monitoring of the motion of the lower marine riser package (LMRP) provided early warning of excessive LMRP movement and instant visualisation of any wellhead fatigue damage from the rig.
The well was drilled horizontally through fractured granite basement to obtain commercial flow and protect the Lancaster asset. The monitoring system was in place for both the drilling and testing phases of well operations. The potentially harsh environmental conditions encountered west of Shetland posed several operational challenges for Hurricane; and the decision to install the monitoring system was part of the company’s intense focus on safety throughout this high-profile operation.