Major Reference Guides for Well Integrity

In this article, the major reference guides for Well Integrity are presented. These guides can be considered as reference documents as well as a basis for training classes on the subject of Well Integrity.

The standard defines the minimum functional and performance oriented requirements and guidelines for well design, planning and execution of safe well operations. The focal of the standard is well integrity.

Well integrity is defined to be “application of technical, operational and organizational solutions to reduce risk of uncontrolled release of formation fluids throughout the life cycle of a well”. The standard focuses on establishing well barriers by use of WBE’s (well barrier elements), their acceptance criteria, their use and monitoring of integrity during their life cycle. The standard also covers well integrity management and personnel competence requirements. The standard does not contain any well or rig equipment specifications.”


  • 117 Recommended guidelines for Well Integrity

A new version of Norsk olje og gass guidelines 117 – Well Integrity has been approved 8 November 2017. This is revision 6. It can be downloaded by clicking on the following link: 117 Norwegian Oil and Gas recommended guidelines Well Integrity – rev 6 Final.pdf


This standard contains practices for isolating potential flow zones, an integral element in maintaining well integrity. The focus of this standard is the prevention of flow through or past barriers that are installed during well construction. Barriers that seal wellbore and formation pressures or flows may include mechanical barriers such as seals, cement, or hydrostatic head, or operational barriers such as flow detection practices. Operational barriers are practices that result in activation of a physical barrier. Though physical barriers may dominate, the total system reliability of a particular design is dependent on the existence of both types of barriers.


The objectives of this guideline are two-fold. The first is to help prevent and/or control flows just prior to, during, and after primary cementing operations to install or “set” casing and liner pipe strings in wells. Some of these flows have caused loss of well control. They threaten the safety of personnel, the environment, and the drilling rigs themselves. The second objective is to help prevent sustained casing pressure (SCP), also a serious industry problem.

Purpose and objective:

This recommended practice is intended to assist in development of a management program designed to promote safety and environmental protection during the performance of offshore oil and gas and sulphur operations. This recommended practice addresses the identification and management of safety hazards and environmental impacts in design, construction, start-up, operation, inspection, and maintenance, of new, existing, or modified drilling and production facilities. The objective of this recommended practice is to form the basis for a Safety and Environmental Management Program (SEMP). By developing a SEMP based on this Recommended Practice, owners and operators will formulate policy and objectives concerning significant safety hazards and environmental impacts over which they can control and can be expected to have an influence.

Description / Abstract:

This document is intended to serve as a guide to monitor and manage annular casing pressure (ACP) in onshore wells, including production, injection, observation/monitoring, and storage wells. This document applies to wells that exhibit thermally induced, operator-imposed, or sustained ACP. It includes criteria for establishing diagnostic thresholds (DTs), monitoring, diagnostic testing, and documentation of ACP for onshore wells. Also included is a discussion of risk management considerations that can be used for the evaluation of individual well situations where the annular casing pressure falls outside the established diagnostic thresholds.

This document recognizes that an ACP outside of the established DTs can result in a risk to well integrity. The level of risk presented by ACP depends on many factors, including the design of the well, the performance of barrier systems within the well, the source of the annular casing pressure, and whether there is an indication of annular flow exists. This document provides guidelines in which a broad range of casing annuli that exhibit annular casing pressure can be managed while maintaining well integrity.

Description / Abstract:

The complexity of deepwater (DW) operations requires a thorough understanding of well design criteria and associated equipment. This recommended practice (RP) provides engineers a reference for DW well design as well as drilling and completion operations. This RP will also be useful to support internal reviews, internal approvals, contractor engagements, and regulatory approvals.

The scope of this RP is to discuss DW drilling and completion activities performed on wells that are constructed using subsea blowout preventers (BOPs) with a subsea wellhead. This document addresses the following.

— Identifies the appropriate barrier and load case considerations to maintain well control during DW well operations (drilling, suspension, completion, production, and abandonment).

— Supplements barrier documentation in API 65-2 with a more detailed description of barriers and discussion of the philosophy, number, type, testing, and management required to maintain well control. This document also supplements the barrier documentation in API 90 in regard to annular pressure buildup (APB). Abandonment barrier requirements are described for use when designing the well

— Discusses load assumptions, resistance assumptions, and methodologies commonly used to achieve well designs with high reliability. The load case discussion includes less obvious events that can arise when unexpected circumstances are combined.

— Describes the risk assessment and mitigation practices commonly implemented during DW casing and equipment installation operations.

ISO/TS 16530-2:2014 provides requirements and methods to the oil and gas industry to manage well integrity during the well operational phase.

The operational phase is considered to extend from handover of the well after construction, to handover prior to abandonment. This represents only the period during the life cycle of the well when it is being operated.

ISO/TS 16530-2:2014 includes:

  • A description of the processes required to assess and manage risk within a defined framework. The risk assessment process also applies when deviating from ISO/TS 16530-2:2014.
  • The process of managing well integrity by operating wells in compliance with operating limits for all well types that are defined based on exposure of risk to people, environment, assets and reputation. The management of well integrity is supported by associated maintenance/monitoring plans, technical reviews and the management of change.
  • The assessment of existing assets (wells / fields) in order to start the process of Well Integrity Management in accordance with ISO/TS 16530-2:2014.
  • The handover process required when changing from one activity to another during the operational phase.

ISO/TS 16530-2:2014 applies to all wells that are utilized by the oil and gas industry, regardless of their age, type or location.


NB: The following website contents many interesting documents on the subject of Well Integrity:

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

About Islam Fetoui


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *