SLB Launches Geopolymer Cement-Free System
EcoShield also reduces carbon footprint of well construction over traditional cement systems.
SLB has brought a new geopolymer cement-free system to market that minimizes the CO2 footprint of a well’s construction. According to the contractor, the EcoShield system eliminates up to 85% of embodied CO2 emissions compared with conventional well cementing systems, which include portland cement. The system has the potential to avoid up to 5 million metric tons of CO2 emissions annually—the equivalent of removing 1.1 million cars from the road each year.
The geopolymer cement-free system matches the rheology, thickening time, and compressive strength properties of portland cement-based systems while delivering comparable performance. SLB adds that the technology fits within standard oilfield cementing workflows without major changes to the design process, onsite execution, or post-job evaluation.
In the Permian Basin, Pioneer Natural Resources successfully deployed the cement-free technology on an 18-well field-testing campaign and continues with its use. The successful pilot program in North America proved the performance of the solution while substantially reducing the CO2 footprint in the well construction process.
“Decarbonizing the well construction process while ensuring safety and performance standards is critical to our industry’s pathway to net zero,” said Jesus Lamas, SLB’s president of well construction. “The cement-free EcoShield system is a breakthrough that delivers industry-standard zonal isolation capabilities while significantly minimizing impact from upstream oil and gas production.”
In addition to its embodied CO2 emissions, portland cement creates significant transportation-related emissions from manufacture to deployment. The EcoShield system uses locally sourced natural materials and industrial waste streams in its composition, making it a more sustainable well integrity method.
It can be deployed throughout various phases of the well life cycle including abandonment. It can also be deployed across a range of field applications, including corrosive environments.