World Oil Online Features ProOne’s Game-Changing Drilling Technology

“New downhole technology significantly lowers drilling costs”
ProOne Energy for World Oil, Product Announcement (online news)


Houston, TX and Orange County, CA-based ProOneR ( has commercialized game-changing downhole drilling technology exclusively distributed by NOV’s new spin-off, DistributionNOW (DNOW), and successfully deployed in hundreds of wells throughout North America. Operators have utilized this advanced lubrication technology to solve wide-ranging issues, including an array of frequently encountered drilling problems, which saves substantial time and money.

Named XPL+ to represent Xtreme Pressure Lubricants, this innovative rig site product is specifically a non-hazardous, biodegradable drilling mud additive tested and certified by leading laboratories such as the widely respected Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas, before its introduction to the oilfield. Two major attributes are its film strength being fifty times that of conventional lubricants and its 100-percent metal bonding capability even when subjected to downhole extremes in heat and pressure.

Key attributes

Operators quickly noticed that the variety of applications include (but are not limited to) solving the following drilling challenges: excessive trip outs, long horizontals, deviated wells, high torque and drag, spiraled holes, top drive overheating, short drill bit life, low rate of penetration (ROP), doglegs (& micro doglegs), chopped holes and stuck pipe. Its powerful friction-reducing capabilities also translate downhole into straighter verticals with less corkscrewing, faster setting of casing, drilling curve in 50-percent less time, sliding liner faster and reducing hook load better than ever.

This drilling treatment’s unique technology delivers some attention-getting numbers. For example, it can reduce the friction coefficient up to and beyond 94% and increases existing mud’s film strength upward of 200,000 psi. In a bench cross-axis friction machine test comparison, bearings without ProOne’s lubricant were damaged at an extremely low 4,000 psi while only minimal damage occurred at a dramatically higher 200,000 psi when utilizing XPL+.

Additionally, this new lubricant is demonstrated effective at temperatures up to 340-degrees C, which easily exceeds any other lubricant’s threshold. Coinciding with today’s oilfield direction beyond conventional drilling operations, this lubricant can be used for two other major applications: hydraulic fracturing and drilling any well which is used for fracking. Yet, for standard drilling, the lubricant is already a real workhorse which – over and above the numerous drilling challenges solved – also registers other achievements. For example, it increases lubricity, allows easier steering and sliding, helps ensure less corrosion and extends machinery performance, including mud pumps, mud motors and drill bits.

Field-proven time/money saver

Of many field examples, a major operator’s experience with XPL+ in New Mexico is as illustrative as any. Addressing one aspect of their drilling, a company representative said that ProOne’s drilling mud additive surpassed anything else he’d seen in a quarter-century. Noting that “Laying this much 5-inch drill string for 12,000 feet of the lateral should take twice the hookload in this formation.” Direct results include 50-percent torque reduction, 28-percent ROP increase, decreased drag in trip out and 25,000 lbs WOB.

While operators work diligently to drill every well as efficiently as possible, overcoming all the typical downhole obstacles frequently collides with holding down costs. Accordingly, operators have noted the substantial cost reduction delivered by ProOne’s additive, ranging from savings up to $100,000 by such attributes as saving mud motors and drill bits, all the way up to saving ½-$1,000,000 by helping free stuck pipe, reducing the risk of twist off and literally finishing the well, for example. And, in the “Not necessarily obvious, but quite important” category, by adding the XPL+ lubricant to water-based mud, its performance surpasses oil-base at only 33-percent of the cost.

Highlighting other typical cost savings, operators are seeing the overarching value of reducing the number of trips since just one trip out can amount to as much as $90,000 on a daily basis. Drill bits are in similar cost parameters, considering that each may cost as much as $100,000. And the mud motors themselves (with multiples often used on one well) have historically added more cost. XPL’s unparalleled lubrication and friction reduction do the job as significant cost-cutters in downhole drilling.


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