Oil & Gas Product News Logo

Data acquisition system cuts costs on oil well stimulation services

After sourcing Delphin data acquisition systems, Kevin developed a program using ProfiSignal software for MTS's oil well stimulation services and operations.
After sourcing Delphin data acquisition systems, Kevin developed a program using ProfiSignal software for MTS's oil well stimulation services and operations.

Company info

8437 Mayfield Rd Unit 104
Chesterland, OH
US, 44026


Read more

CAS DataLoggers provided the data acquisition solution for MTS Solutions, an oil field service company headquartered in Bakersfield, California. MTS has been providing well stimulation services in California for over 30 years, maximizing production for clients using both traditional and green products. Data Acquisition Operations Engineer Kevin England explains, "We're a small business 25-man crew, as opposed to a multi-national company, so we needed a cost-effective monitoring solution for our jobs that still had the advanced functionality our customers require."

After sourcing Delphin data acquisition systems, Kevin developed a program using ProfiSignal software for MTS's oil well stimulation services and operations. His program auto-transmits job data over WiFi in real-time to well owners, documents the entire job, remotely shuts off pumps if necessary, and calculates productivity. In this way, Delphin performs Data Acquisition, Monitoring, and Automation—all in a single system at each job.

Multi-Parameter Monitoring in Real-Time

In late 2016, MTS Solutions sourced three Delphin Expert Loggers from CAS DataLoggers. These Model 100 loggers have a 4GB internal memory to store data along with a WiFi interface. MTS also opted for the Klicks software option enabling automation capability along with runtime monitoring.

In this application, the Expert Loggers are installed on different service trucks which travel to job sites, each monitoring multiple measurement values including Pump Pressure, Flow, Volume (in gallons), Runtime, and Productivity.

To collect the data, users have connected the loggers' universal analog inputs (mV mA, TC, RTD) with different sensor types such as 4-20mA pressure sensors and New-FlowTM flow meters. The Expert Loggers have been set up to sample data from each connected sensor once per second. Currently, the application involves 40 inputs.

Mr. England explains, "Essentially, I was looking for a data system I could program to take data from pressure sensors and flow meters and then trend that data over time. Earlier we had tried using another device, but Delphin is easy to use for everything we need. I developed this automated application myself using just the ProfiSignal Klicks software. Now our rig operators only have to push a few buttons on a laptop to start the job."

Trending the Data

The monitoring program for well stimulation services includes a trend chart of Pump pressure vs. time using data from 2 pressure sensors mounted on the pump on the truck and a third sensor located at the wellhead.

A separate flow meter on the truck is used to record the flow rate and the number of gallons of fluid pumped vs. time. All of this data is displayed on a single, operator configurable graph page providing a comprehensive view of the operation in an easy to understand format.

Wireless Data Transfer

Data collection is performed automatically over Wireless Ethernet (WiFi). MTS uses WiFi hotspots for wireless connectivity and fast data transfer so that well Engineers, Field Operators and MTS management can all view data in real-time, using their PCs or mobile devices. The Expert Logger provides the data every second which provides a clear picture of operations on well stimulation services.

With their old data recorder, the pump operator would need to remember to bring a flash drive, save the local data to it, and turn it in at the end of the day. Now data collection is performed in a single event, automatically saved, then sent to a one-time "Cloud" account, and in 15 seconds it's available for Mr. England to view from any location.

He explains, "I have the program set up for three different ways to talk to the rig's PLC. It looks for the IP address of one of three communication types: USB, Ethernet or WiFi connectivity. If it can't find an IP address, the program won't start, so this way we ensure that the rig won't operate unless it's first able to transmit the data. This feature also prevents data tampering.

"Our customers love this: they can see all the data in real-time. This wireless viewing technology blows one of our customer's minds: he can even monitor us from any location while we're working on his job."

Electronic Documentation

Operators start and end their job with a button press that creates a datafile in CSV format containing an In/Out timestamp along with location name, well name, and operator name. During the shift, the ProfiSignal program automatically documents all operator actions taken, including pumping time and chemical switch-outs. This datafile is then exported as an ASCII2 file and timestamped.

Operators also have an option to open TeamViewer software (available free online) where they can receive a temporary passkey. This is then given to customers and allows a temporary one-time viewing of the job. In this way, customers can view data remotely in real-time instead of needing the Tool Pusher or Engineer in the ‘danger zone' during the job.

Mr. England explains, "By adding Delphin, our data collection routine went from a 1 3-step training program to a simple 4-step process with minimal effort. This way, the customer can correlate and filter the data so the Delphin program is a documentation solution for us too. The simplicity of ProfiSignal is definitely there. The CAS inside Engineering Dept. has been nothing but helpful. Once I got the hang of the software, it was all cut-and-dry, very easy to maneuver in."

Alarm Capability

The program also has multiple two-tier alarms set. Four alarms provide over-watch on pump pressure and wellhead pressure. England explains, "We have a preset maxi- mum value set for well pressure, given to us by the customer and then set in the pro- gram on our side by the Operator. Operators also have a digital alarm set with their rig PLCs."

The 2nd alarm tier causes an automatic truck shutdown, which is achieved by the software sending a command to the PLC, activating a relay which causes the truck to shut off. If the pressure exceeds this user-set max value, it only takes a second and a half to shut down the truck's valves and relieve all pump pressure. This guarantees that throughout operation, pressure never exceeds a few PSI over the set shutdown pressure.

Kevin England again: "This is definitely one of the biggest features that our custom- ers request. We also have a way to automatically shut off the PLC via timer, which is nice because it prevents it from being accidentally left on indefinitely."

Productivity Monitoring

"There's a future application I plan to use with the Delphin loggers: a Volume calculator based on the well that the operator is at. We routinely get specs on the wells like casing diameter, displacement, etc. from engineers. I want to input this into ProfiSignal so that the operator can look at these numbers and match them up to the gallons pumped. This way, the customer can look at productivity and see that it's acceptable."


Summing up the benefits of the new solution for monitoring well stimulationservices, Mr. England comments, "At MTS, our biggest buying point for Delphinwas its cost-effectiveness given the large feature set which combined everythingwe wanted to do. Before this, we used to use hand-programmed PLCs, but thetechnicians were $240/hr to hire and weren't available for weeks. If operations shutdown, we had a BIG problem! Now we handle everything 100% in-house, withoutneeding to wait or pay for support.

"As an example, one of our main customers in Long Beach recently required that alltheir contractors implement auto-shutdown capability during their jobs. Using ourprogram, we were able to provide that requirement for them overnight. If we still hadour old system, we'd have been out of luck and lost the work opportunity!

"Part of the ROI also comes from our new data collection method: because we nowwe have immediate, reliable data collection since job data is all auto-transmitted viawireless. Our operators are using HP laptops running Windows 7. ProfiSignal comesout crisp and clear on Win10; I would recommend it."

Following the development of this program, MTS Solutions purchased two moreExpert Loggers in early January of this year, putting the total number of unitspurchased at six. 

More from Drilling & Production

September 2019 international rig count released by Baker Hughes

Baker Hughes, a GE company announced that the Baker Hughes international rig count for September 2019 was 1,131, down 7 from the 1,138 counted in August 2019, and up 127 from the 1,004 counted in September 2018. The international offshore rig count for September 2019 was 242, down 2 from the 244 counted in August 2019, and up 38 from the 204 counted in September 2018. 

Caliper tool from Probe designed for ultra-high temperature environments

Probe, a supplier of cased-hole logging and advanced monitoring technology to the global oil and gas and geothermal industries, has announced the launch of its UHT Dimension XY Caliper, the first XY Caliper Tool specifically designed to operate in ultra-high temperature environments. This new development expands upon the renowned Kuster geothermal logging tool portfolio, used extensively in the global geothermal industry for its performance and reliability.

At-Bit Steerable System from Schlumberger aids in horizontal well drilling

Schlumberger introduced the NeoSteer at-bit steerable system (ABSS) at the Society of Petroleum Engineers Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (SPE ATCE). The NeoSteer ABSSs improve horizontal well drilling performance by providing high-dogleg capability and increased rate of penetration in the curve and the lateral.

Armor cladding alloy now available from Schlumberger for drill bits

Smith Bits, a Schlumberger company, has introduced Aegis armor cladding that significantly improves bit body design flexibility and erosion resistance, increasing rate of penetration (ROP) and bit durability for longer runs. Composed of a proprietary tungsten carbide material, Aegis cladding increases bit erosion resistance by 400% and strength by 40% when compared to conventional matrix polycrystalline diamond compact (PDC) bits.

Subscribe to our free newsletter

Get our newsletter

Learn more

August shows slight yearly increase in Canadian rig count

Baker Hughes, a GE company announced that the Baker Hughes international rig count for August 2019 was 1,138, down 24 from the 1,162 counted in July 2019, and up 130 from the 1,008 counted in August 2018. The international offshore rig count for August 2019 was 244, down 11 from the 255 counted in July 2019, and up 32 from the 212 counted in August 2018.

Portable pumps from SPX FLOW offer workhorses for offshore oil and gas

SPX FLOW has a long history in supplying portable pump technology to the oil and gas industry. Some of its models have proved so successful and popular that they have been around (upgraded and improved) for nearly 50 years and continue to be selected as reliable workhorses for the industry. Of course, technology has advanced over time, creating higher speeds for even greater efficiency, while maintaining high levels of performance and reliability.

Probe ProMAC tools deliver advanced measurement quality and reliability

Probe, a  supplier of cased-hole logging and advanced monitoring technology to the global oil and gas and geothermal industries,  has launched the ProMAC, a new series of multi-arm caliper tools. Designed to increase measurement accuracy, reliability and maintainability, ProMAC series tools offer the most advanced measurements in the industry to provide an accurate profile of the internal surface of tubing, casing and completion assemblies.

Orbital Gas Systems secures GasPTi orders from leading U.S. energy producer and transporter

Orbital Gas Systems has received orders to supply GasPTi systems for deployment across multiple natural gas plants by one of the largest U.S.-based producers and transporters of energy. These orders, part of a nascent, ongoing roll-out of GasPTi across the customer's extensive natural gas assets, will be utilized to deliver operating and environmental improvements and practically eliminate ongoing costs associated with maintenance and natural gas consumption at certain customer facilities. 

Efficient pump protection for large pumps: The control valve alternative

In the power production or oil and gas industries, centrifugal pumps for fire protection or condensate systems and other large pumps are critical to operations. However, when unprotected, these units are at greater risk. Operation of these pumps below the minimum flow condition, specified by the manufacturer, can cause overheating—wreaking catastrophic damage to a pumping station. A twin threat, cavitation, can also occur because of operation below the minimum flow condition. These consequences are likely to reduce plant productivity and profitability. The standard pump protection solution, a control valve, offers only complicated functionality and limited economy for installation. For many large pump applications, an all-in-one automatic pump protection valve proves more effective and efficient when compared to a control valve alternative.

Overcoming entrained gas challenges in crude oil transfer

Like snowflakes and human fingerprints, no two oil wells are exactly the same. Even though they may be located on adjacent plots of land, the characteristics of the wells can be vastly different. Whereas one might have a straight, unencumbered path to the product reservoir, the second's drilling route may require a number of dogleg turns to avoid difficult rock and sediment formations, which can give the final wellbore the look of a corkscrew.

Subscribe to our free magazine

Get Our Magazine

Paper or Digital delivered monthly to you

Subscribe or Renew Learn more

Rival downhole tools secures five year collaborative supply agreement for drilling motors

Rival Downhole Tools (Rival), a portfolio company of EV Private Equity, has secured a five-year collaborative supply agreement for drilling motors for US Land from a major oilfield services provider. Rival will utilize its market-leading engineering and operational capabilities to support the customer's substantial and growing directional drilling business. Rival will also accelerate the growth of its operational footprint into multiple basins to optimize its proximity to drilling activity. 

Husky to resume full production at White Rose

Following an extensive investigation, flow line repairs, integrity testing and approval of the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB), Husky Energy will resume production from the remaining two drill centres shut in following the November 2018 oil spill offshore Newfoundland and Labrador. Husky will now begin an orderly restart and expects to reach full rates by early next week.

High HP phase electric motors coupled with pumps provide rapid productivity

Single Phase Power Solutions, the world's only manufacturer of high horsepower single phase electric motors, match their motors to a pump to provide instant productivity.  Available from 30 to 100 HP these single phase pump solutions are easily installed by simply connecting to available single phase utility power - they do not require a phase converter or Variable Frequency Drive (VFD).  The company incorporates their Belle Single-Phase MotorT which uses Written-PoleR technology to power standard suction end centrifugal pumps, rotary gear pumps, and turbine pumps in both horizontal and vertical configurations. These pump solutions are ideal for irrigation, drinking water distribution, well pumps, aquifer management, water treatment, wastewater pumping, wastewater collection, wastewater treatment and discharge, and other water and wastewater processing applications.   With expertise in pump systems design and manufacture, Single Phase Power Solutions team helps determine the correct materials and style of pump to suit specific application requirements.

On/off valves for hazardous areas from CIRCOR

CIRCOR International, a worldwide manufacturer of valves for the power generation, industrial, marine and oil and gas markets for over a century, features high-quality R.G. Laurence on/off control valves for applications demanding rapid opening and sealed closure. ATEX-certified and Factory Mutual-approved R.G. Laurence valves offer reliable performance in high temperature and extreme service conditions.

July rig count up in Canada, but down from 2018: Baker Hughes

Baker Hughes, a GE company announced  that the Baker Hughes international rig count for July 2019 was 1,162, up 24 from the 1,138 counted in June 2019, and up 165 from the 997 counted in July 2018. The international offshore rig count for July 2019 was 255, up 9 from the 246 counted in June 2019, and up 38 from the 217 counted in July 2018.

Subscribe to our free newsletter

Get our newsletter

Learn more

PSAC forecast update confirms low investor confidence in Canada

The Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC), in its third update to its 2019 Canadian Drilling Activity Forecast, announced that it is decreasing its forecasted number of wells to be drilled (rig released) across Canada for 2019 from 5,300 (May 2019 revision) to 5,100 wells drilled. PSAC based its updated 2019 Forecast on average natural gas prices of $1.60 CDN/Mcf (AECO), crude oil prices of US$57.00/barrel (WTI) and the Canada-US exchange rate averaging $0.76.

Frac Shack Inc. announces successful launch of NG SideKick

Frac Shack Inc.'s newest innovation, the NG SideKick, is the industry's most sophisticated on-pad gas processing unit that takes in field natural gas and processes it down to a safe and usable state for multiple uses on any location. The SideKick depressurizes, heats, and removes liquids and hydrocarbons from field natural gas to ensure the gas is safe and available for use in any natural gas and bi-fuel engine on a hydraulic fracturing location. 

Messer highlights new "Huff 'N Puff" treatment to recharge well stimulation at the Unconventional Resources Technology Conference 2019

At URTeC 2019, Messer is highlighting its RECHARGE HNP, or "Huff ‘n Puff," technology, a proven solution for well production enhancement. Ideal for re-stimulating depleted oil and gas wells, the energized RECHARGE HNP treatment combines the proven enhanced recovery properties of carbon dioxide (CO2) or nitrogen (N2) with the latest in advanced nanoparticle technology from Nissan Chemical. URTeC takes place July 22 – 24 in Denver.

ESG successfully completes commercial test of high-temperature, high-pressure downhole microseismic system for hydraulic fracture monitoring

ESG Solutions has recently completed a successful commercial test of its new HOTSHOT downhole microseismic system in the Eagle Ford shale. HOTSHOT represents ESG's latest commitment to acquiring the highest quality microseismic data. The new downhole system was designed specifically for high-temperature, high-pressure operational environments up to 177°C/350°F and 10,000 psi.

Schroedahl high-efficiency self-modulating pump protection valves

SCHROEDAHL, a CIRCOR International brand and an international leader in pump protection and flow control technology, announces that new, self-modulating TDL Automatic Recirculation Valves (ARVs) are now available in more than 35% lighter cast material. These reliable all-in-one pump protection solutions are designed to keep pumping systems in process, firefighting, refinery, power and chemical applications modulating and running smoothly, without cavitation or overheating.

Environmental assessments begin on BHP Canada and Tilt Cove exploration projects

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency has commenced federal environmental assessments for the proposed BHP Canada Exploration Drilling Project and the Tilt Cove Exploration Drilling Project. The two projects are located between 300 and 325 kilometres east of St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, in the Atlantic Ocean.

Cleansorb ORCA for OBM well treatments increase production and water injectivity

Cleansorb, a provider of patented chemical well treatments that enhance hydrocarbon production for the international oil and gas industry, announced that following a series of successful ORCA for OBM treatments on offshore oil production wells and a water injection well drilled with OBM, increased production and water injectivity have been achieved on behalf of a major operator in the Middle East.

Canadian rigs creeping upwards in weekly count

Baker Hughes Rig Count: U.S. - 6 to 969 rigs

  • U.S. Rig Count is down 6 rigs from last week to 969, with oil rigs down 1 to 788, gas rigs down 5 to 181, and miscellaneous rigs unchanged at 0.
  • U.S. Rig Count is down 90 rigs from last year's count of 1,059, with oil rigs down 75, gas rigs down 13, and miscellaneous rigs down 2.
  • The U.S. Offshore Rig Count is up 1 rig to 24 and up 4 rigs year-over-year.
Subscribe to our free magazine

Get Our Magazine

Paper or Digital delivered monthly to you

Subscribe or Renew Learn more