• Background

    Baker Hughes was working on a workover campaign in Azerbaijan with two 2 ⅜” coiled tubing strings. During operations, they damaged one of their strings, resulting in the need to scrap it. This would leave just one string for them to use, and if this one was also damaged, there would not be a back up string. Thus, the project would have had to been canceled until replacement strings could arrive, which would have been several months.

    In order for the job to be completed, Baker Hughes decided to attempt to get a backup order of two 2” OD, 20,000 foot concentric strings as soon as possible. These strings would be used as their contingency plan, and they were hoping to not have to use them. Due to the emergency nature of this order, these strings would have to be air freighted using custom-designed coiled tubing cradles for the spools.


    Quality Tubing, a part of the Intervention and Stimulation Equipment Business Unit, was able to quickly provide a solution for Baker Hughes. Together with a third-party cradle provider and the airline, we designed, manufactured, assembled and shipped the two concentric strings to their operations.

    We manufactured all four strings individually. Then, we injected the smaller, 1” OD tubing into the 2” OD tubing of each concentric string. For two days, a five-mile stretch of isolated road was closed as 40,000 feet of tubing was laid flat and inspected. Coiled tubing injectors joined the tubes together over a 12-hour period each day, with continuous quality control to ensure that the coiled tubing string was perfect. After final inspection the string was coiled onto two metal spools, each almost 14 feet high.

    In order to ensure that the strings were safe while traveling, we worked closely with a spool manufacturer to create the custom-designed spools and cradles. We also had to find an airplane that was able to handle these spools - a combined weight of 180,000 pounds. To reduce movement, the vendor built custom brackets, and these were installed while the team completed the documentation for Azerbaijan import requirements. 

    An Antonov An-124 Ruslan (Condor) plane was chosen as the preferred plane to transfer this shipment. After four careful hours to load and secure the coiled tubing, plus a final quality check, the Condor headed to Azerbaijan.

    Thankfully for the customer, these strings were not needed. If, however, Baker Hughes was to have to use the strings, they would have potentially saved roughly seven days of rig time and $2.5 million while trying to recover the well production of 11,000 bbl/day. At the time of this order, oil was $100/bbl, so this would have also saved another $7.7 million per those seven days of downtime.

    Contact Us For More Information

    Fore more information concerning our Service Center Network and Enhanced Coiled Tubing Solutions, please contact us at qualitytubing@nov.com.

    To request a quote for an Enhanced Coiled Tubing Solution, please click here.