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Unformatted text preview: program used by BP and MI‐SWACO was a cause of the blowout. E.
Mud Losses Throughout the drilling of the Macondo well, BP experienced multiple incidents where mud was lost into the formation. While the loss of mud during drilling operations is not uncommon, it is a key indicator to drilling engineers that they must monitor the well closely to ensure that well and formation integrity are being maintained properly. Abnormal pressure zones identified as a result of mud loss events often lead drilling engineers to change the well design and casing setting points. BP drilled the Macondo well to a measured depth of 18,360 feet. The crew set a 9‐7/8 inch liner in place at 17,168 feet measured depth prior to drilling the production section, which was the final section of the well. The last section was difficult to drill due to a decrease in the fracture gradient at the bottom of the wellbore. This condition required BP to carefully select the correct mud weight necessary to maintain overbalance relative to the formation while avoiding fluid losses t...
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