Unbundling of Hydraulic Fracturing Services Returns Chemical Choice to Producers

Jan. 1, 2016
Those involved in the oil industry today are defined as much by the money they save as by how much they produce. But cost savings shouldn't come at the expense of results.

Those involved in the oil industry today are defined as much by the money they save as by how much they produce. But cost savings shouldn’t come at the expense of results. In the category of frack fluid chemicals, Bosque Systems’ OptiFluids™ service offers chemicals as a separate product from the package put forth by the company pumping the frack water downhole, promising to both reduce costs and improve production.

Typically, frack chemicals pass through the hands of a chemical reseller, and then the frack company, on their way into the formation - stops that increase costs to the producer. And because the frack job is usually a turnkey operation, operators often accept a predetermined mix for each completion without regard for individual downhole conditions that may require a different formula in order to maximize production.

Bosque’s engineers had already developed chemical programs designed to prepare water for reuse, especially in the Permian Basin of West Texas and Southeast New Mexico, where freshwater resources are limited. In February 2015, meetings began with chemical suppliers in order to determine the lowest-cost supply chain options for getting the top-performing actives in the industry. During that time, engineers began designing chemical feed units, based on industry best practices, that would deliver the product mix in the field.

After field testing chemical mixes in a variety of areas with varying formations, temperatures and other conditions, the company began formulating OptiFluids packages appropriate for each set of conditions. This would give operators wells with fewer issues and better production, while saving 30-40 percent on the cost of the chemicals.

Bosque Systems’ OptiFluids system utilizes a two-axle, 48-foot-long, drop-deck flatbed trailer with a 12-330 gallon IBC tote capacity that carries two 18-hour-life diesel generators running 10 positive displacement pumps to deliver the fluids.

To arrive at the proper chemical mix for each well, OptiFluids engineers meet with the producer’s frack engineers and share their expertise in frack fluid performance and compatibility design. They learn what the producer is currently using and the extent to which that design is bringing the desired results. The team makes recommendations based on all these factors and follows up with fluid performance and compatibility testing. With this data, the producer can make an informed decision regarding the final formula.

OptiFluids also has the ability to measure exact amounts of the required chemicals in order to give the best production results and to provide accurate billing. The equipment is controlled by an extended service set wireless and analog chemical pump control system, including a data logger that uses a cellular network to communicate to a customer login website for reporting purposes. The system has the ability to pump one chemical up to 125 gpm or 10 separate chemicals at a rate of 12.5 gpm, each at the frack flow and pressures of 100 BPM.

Precise chemical measurements are delivered through a mass balance feed system that follows the job’s predetermined recommendations. Using a flow meter, operators can dial the pumps up or down in real-time.

OptiFluids uses a calculated formula based on a total flow rate, which tells the operator the expected delivery quantity, and finely-tuned flow meters show the amount of chemicals actually pumped. Careful monitoring of delivery allows the mix to be altered if conditions warrant, not only reducing costs but providing operators with a sophisticated yet simple-to-operate system that delivers more precise control over the frack process.

Headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, Bosque Systems LLC is a leading provider of cost-effective, custom water treatment and disposal systems for natural gas and oil well operators in need of flowback and produced water management solutions. To learn more, visit www.bosquesystems.com.

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