On drilling site there are many mud tanks for the normal drilling operation. Mud tanks are not high tech, but they are indispensable.
When drilling rigs need to switch from one
kind of mud to another, mud tanks need to be thoroughly cleaned so that
drilling muds would not crossly contaminate.
Traditional tank cleaning method is manual.
Workers with heavy protection clothes enter mud tanks, exposing themselves to
the hazardous enclosure and apply high pressure solution spray to clean mud
tanks. This process is tedious and labor intensive, in hazardous environment.
Sometimes the drilling rigs are in urgent of clean mud tank, and the only way
to speed up is to clean the mud tanks with more workers, which adds economic
burden to drilling operation.
In order to solve this problem, GN Solids Control performed extensive research, and in-depth development work. The result is GNTC-30 series automatic tank cleaning system.
The system composes of a buffer tank, which stores cleaning solutions. A powerful centrifugal pump pressurizes the solution and send liquid to tank cleaning machine (TCM). TCM is a well-engineered sprayer, which can scan the inside of mud tanks at pre-set scanning pattern. Usually tank cleaning is finished with one complete scanning cycle. If super clean inside is needed, say for very expensive drilling mud for critical drilling, secondary scanning is deployed.
Suck pump will collect fluid on the floor
of mud tank and transfer the fluid to a inclined plate clarifier(IPC) by GN
Solids Control, through a filter, which stops big items such as screws, big
drilling cut from entering such pumps. It is quite normal that a lot of barite
would deposit on mud tank floor. Because of its cost, barite needs to be
recovered. So suck pump should be able to transfer heavy barite.
Once the sucked-in liquid is transferred to
IPC, this highly efficient clarifier quickly separate solids including barite
and solution. Solids will go to the bottom of IPC. Clarity of solution increase
with decrease in liquid depth, with the cleanest water on the surface of
liquid. This clean water will overflow to buffer tank, to be pumped again to
clean mud tank to establish closed loop system.
The IPC by GN Solids Control has specially
designed shape, which allows quick establishment of solids inside the tank. A
membrane pump will transfer the deposited solids, including barite, to collect
One major advantage of such automatic
cleaning system is its efficiency. In general, a mud tank can be cleaned in 30
minutes. This is much more efficient compared to the manual cleaning process,
which usually takes hours of hard labor work.
Another advantage of such system is safety,
because exposure to hazardous enclosure is minimized. Operators only need to
enter mud tanks to setup cleaning machine, and the rest of the cleaning process
is done by the machine, with operator working on the outside.
GN Solids Control is continually to developing more efficient, more intelligent automatic mud tank cleaning system for different applications.