Well Force International has developed HiTT, its unique software solution for managing boreholes, providing more efficient drilling programmes at a lower cost and most importantly, helping to improve the conditions for target zone intersection. It has been designed for use by both drillers and geologists. Drillers can monitor drilling progress and correct deviations quickly, while geologists can be confident their target zone will be intersected to support accurate resource definition.
HiTT uses proven oilfield minimum curvature methods to calculate the trajectory of a borehole and generate 3D directional plans when deflections are required to hit the target.
Well Force's software is designed to significantly improve borehole planning and management, providing a unique view of exactly what is happening below the surface from the start of the drill hole to completion. The software has the flexibility to provide visibility of a single hole or multiple boreholes at once and provides a range of planning tools.
What makes Well Force's software unique is its ability to provide three-dimensional visibility of the borehole's progress, with full 360° rotational views. It is also capable of two-dimensional section and plan views, across individual or multiple boreholes.
Three-dimensional views quickly provide a real-world view of the subject matter below the surface, allowing for rotation and visualisation from multiple perspectives. Simply, it is the difference between a photo and a sculpture. Target zones are identified, and deflection requirements are immediately visible. They can be implemented in a timely manner, avoiding costly redrills, borehole collisions or inaccurate resource evaluations.
The directional drilling capability directs the borehole along a trajectory to a predetermined target. It also allows for planning of more efficient, multi-target drill programmes where a single parent hole can complete multiple child targets below the surface.
This drilling method can save significant time and money while minimising the impact of drilling activity on the local environment. It will reduce the number of metres drilled; provide more accurate ore body definition and quantification; intersect target zones at optimum strike angle; minimise drilling in difficult ground conditions as once it has been drilled, it can be cased off, and deliver significant cost reductions by avoiding redrilling and coring formations above the mineralised zone.
The HiTT software keeps the borehole contained within prescribed limits relative to inclination angle, horizontal deviation from the vertical, or both. Users can determine their preferred tolerances and they are shown as a cylinder around the desired trajectory to the target. If the borehole reaches these limits, a deflection can be implemented to stay within the cylinder and ensure intersection of the target zone.
Trends can be identified when studying views of the survey data from one or multiple boreholes. If a number of boreholes behave in a similar way, for example, are naturally moving in one direction, it may indicate a trend at certain depths under specific conditions. Trends can be applied to the borehole for a prescribed distance in order to visualise the possible results if the trend holds true. Drilling programs can then be adjusted to take this into account.
Extrapolation within HiTT aids borehole planning by showing the effect on the borehole if the current trends or methods continue. It will indicate if a deflection plan is required based on the criteria input at that specific point in time and will use the data to determine the deflection plan.
Using defined path extrapolation, a report is generated on what measures must be taken to get a borehole back to the trajectory with a specific orientation. This may be required if a certain attitude, dip and azimuth, is preferred at the target.
The system allows for constant monitoring of the progress of a borehole once the survey data has been imported or uploaded. If it shows deviation from the plan, HiTT can generate a report with plans to realign the drill hole to target that can be exported and provided to drill crews. This is particularly critical for new resource delineation projects looking to obtain finance.
Every shift the user can generate a detailed overview of the progression of the drill hole. This report can be emailed directly to drill supervisors and geologists to monitor progress. A number of reports are available including borehole trajectory in relation to the target, together with planned trajectory; deflection plan showing the planned deflection path and all instructions required to achieve the deflection: and ‘what if' scenarios allowing the operator to model hypothetical scenarios based on their knowledge of the ground conditions to generate both visual and data reports on the results.
These reports can assist with planning daily drill programmes, such as whether an updated plan is required to deflect the hole to maintain progress to target. By monitoring the direction and bends in the hole caused by the drilling process and ground conditions, assessments can be made on whether conditioning or hole smoothing is needed.
There are significant financial benefits to be realised when using Well Force's software. In planning a more efficient drill programme, costs associated with drilling are reduced. Improved visibility of what is happening below the earth's surface avoids costly borehole collisions and deviations of the borehole can be identified quickly, with plans generated to realign the drill to target and prevent redrills. Most significantly, by ensuring the target zone is hit, resource evaluations are accurate and important decisions can be made based on correct information.
HiTT software has a proven history of success, having hit target intersections across many projects, with multiple targets off a single parent hole. As a result, it is used throughout the global exploration drilling industry, also helping to reduce the total metres drilled and therefore the cost of exploration programmes.