Engineering Solutions

Mud Gas Separator


A friend needs help. He was just placed in charge of solving a problem: A mud gas separator is releasing air/gas bubbles in the mud line, which is creating a dangerous situation. The documentation on the facility is non-existant! He gives you the drawing below with approximate flow rates. Can you determine what is happening from the diagram alone? Now prove your hypothesis using engineering analysis!

Schematic Diagram

Schematic of mudgas separator and critical dimensions for solving the unwanted gas problem.

Mud Gas Separator Analysis

I made a good cup of coffee and started problem solving. Here is the engineering analysis (If you find something wrong with the analysis please email so I can fix it!). It is a fun little problem. The key was determining the purpose of the two closed valves just from the equations. Since the documentation was lost, the mud gas separator was kept in the same configuration from the last user.

Filtration Screen Manufacturing for Sand Control


During a conference, one of the speakers claimed that the oil industry would benefit greatly from a filtration screen mesh that could be both precise and accurate. Ideally the size of the screen should be 0.008" with a tolerance of plus or minus 0.001". The screen should be within tolerance over 99% of the 40 ft long filter. So I took it on the challenge and made my preliminary evaluation for a manufacturing process to create a filter with the desired specifications and a roadmap to progress beyond the current manufacturing process. Here is my preliminary engineering analysis for screen mesh manufacturing.

Sample Screen Mesh

Sample filter screens samples collected at OTC.