Revolutionary robots

The result of one man’s vision to improve existing practices within the oil and gas industry, Welltec® has grown from its inception by Jørgen Hallundbaek to become a globally operating, innovative developer of groundbreaking solutions. Indeed, since inventing the Well Tractor®, Jørgen maintained a strong belief in his pioneering technology and established Welltec® in 1994. The Well Tractor® is a unique product that is run on an electric line and can be transported by helicopter for swift mobilisation to ensure significant cost savings and increased recovery from wells. It was developed as part of his university thesis in 1987. Since its incorporation and subsequent roll-out of the Well Tractor® in 1996, the dynamic firm has gone from strength to strength as it has continuously created innovative technologies that ensure safety, increased sustainability and delivered higher recovery. In fact, Welltec® has caused something of a revolution in the industry with its solutions, which have made previously impossible operations achievable.

“Welltec® is a global provider of solutions for oil and gas wells from vertical to horizontal – offshore and onshore. Our solutions are tailored to allow operators in the oil and gas industry to produce more cost effectively with improved recovery while achieving significantly higher returns. For 20 years we have been driven by the belief that the industry can be more efficient and safe while delivering higher recovery and overall sustainability. Our offering of unique intervention solutions and groundbreaking completion technologies has proven time and again that it is possible. Safety and higher recovery are no longer contradictions,” begins Jørgen Hallundbaek, founder and CEO of Welltec®.

“Our game-changing solutions allow our customers, some of the world’s largest national and independent oil companies, to optimise production through ground-breaking flexible well completion solutions (WCS) and innovative well intervention services (WIS). Our disruptive innovations challenge the conventions, maximising production, increasing oil recovery and improving well integrity and safety, with faster and less intrusive solutions in environments that are becoming increasingly complex, remote and hostile. In an industry characterised by maturing fields and increasing depletion, the premium attached to technology, which aids in reversing these trends is continuing to gain momentum. Our value proposition is compelling; our technology enables clients to unlock more production from their assets and to address reservoir complexities and uncertainties with a greater number of options, which are cleaner, safer and more sustainable,” he adds.

With ~1000 employees operating in 59 locations in 29 countries, Welltec® is on a mission to meet the world’s demand for oil and gas in the most efficient way possible. Committed to the development and provision of well technologies and solutions for oil and gas organisations, the company has invested in new facilities that will have a core focus on its latest development, the Welltec® Annular Barrier (WAB®). “The Transformation Center in Esbjerg, Denmark, is one more step on the path towards achieving our vision of transforming the upstream oil and gas industry such that it becomes safer and more sustainable. The new facilities will help enable that,” says Jørgen. “The 77,500 square foot facilities will be producing our expanding fleet of unique completion products, including the WAB®. Introducing our Flex-Well® concept we have opened up a whole new way of integrating well design and interventions. With the Flex-Well® it is possible for operators to design their wells to achieve optimal production for the life of the well. In short, Flex-Well® enables operators to produce oil and gas safer, more sustainable and with higher recovery.

Following its launch into the market, the WAB® has achieved a number of breakthroughs in the industry; for example, since 2012 it has been utilised for zonal isolation in wells completed without cement. And on 16th January 2015, a press release announced that it had been installed as a primary, standalone well barrier element for the first time in the industry. Discussing the ground-breaking qualities of the WAB®, Jørgen states: “The Welltec® Annular Barrier (WAB®) was developed for well integrity applications and for zonal isolation within the reservoir section or between reservoir units. It is an expandable metal annular barrier delivering a surface controlled, rugged, reliable, large expansion annular barrier with high-pressure capability covering a wide range of hole sizes (full Delta P capability from in-gauge to washed out holes).

“The 9 5/8 inch WAB® is both qualified in accordance with the IS014310 V3 standard and more recently qualified to the V0 leak criteria for application in cased hole environments. As mentioned above the WAB® has been deployed by a major NOC as a standalone primary well barrier (no cement required) in compliance with NORSOK D-010 Rev 4 standard. These qualifications permit the WAB® to replace cement in eliminating a fundamental problem within the industry, surface annular pressure (SAP). SAP is present on a large population of well stock currently and may result in corrosion to the B-annulus, requires undesired governmental approval and unnecessary rig and workover resources to repair. The WAB® offers a new, fast and more cost effective way to challenge this problem which to date has seen very few feasible approaches for its elimination.”

This highly innovative equipment has been selected as the winner of the OTC Spotlight on New Technology Award in 2015 ; this is the fourth time that Welltec® has received the prestigious award, following a win in 2013 for the Well Cutter®, 2009 for the Well Cleaner® PST and 2008 with the Well Cleaner RCB. The company will receive the trophy in May 2015 during the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC). Upon winning the award, Jørgen said: “We pride ourselves on being a transformational company, one that develops technology with real, immediate impact. The WAB® is another perfect example of our vision. Its universal application can significantly improve safety and efficiency in our industry, providing a reliable, effective annular barrier while eliminating the need and cost of cement.”

In addition to the highly effective and successful WAB®, the company has been gaining market attention for its Well Stroker® XXS, which offers the first surface controlled, e-line tool that has the capability to latch and then pull or push objects in a well with up to 100,000 lbs of force. Selected as a finalist for the ICoTA Intervention Technology Award, the Well Stroker® XXS is a game-changing piece of technology that promotes safety and efficiency, while also significantly reducing costs.

“We are honoured to be a finalist for this important industry award,” said Jørgen. “We believe that the Well Stroker® XXS truly has the potential to change how the industry operates by replacing much larger equipment with a nimble e-line tool. In fact, an 18 ft Well Stroker® XXS is able to perform the same work as a work-over rig, which has incredible prospects for how we plan and execute operations. This is the fifth time we are selected as a finalist for the ICoTA Intervention Technology Award. We have won it the last two years for our WellLIT® and Well Cutter®.”

As uncertainty in the oil and gas market continues due to low oil prices, companies are increasingly focused on finding ways to reduce costs while increasing production. With its highly efficient and innovative solutions, Welltec® is in an enviable position to meet the needs of its clients to achieve their goals through the delivery of safe, sustainable and high quality approach that boosts recovery at a lower price. “We want to transform the upstream oil and gas industry such that it becomes safer and more sustainable while achieving higher recovery. Our mission, therefore, is to develop and deliver game-changing solutions, which allow our clients to optimise the management and development of their assets,” concludes Jørgen.


Services: Provider of robotic well solutions

Issue 120 May 2015