July 2018, Vol. 245, No. 7

Tech Notes

New Frack Pump Reduces Maintenance Costs

Texas-based Weir Oil & Gas said its SPM® QEM 3000 Frac Pump continues to yield unsurpassed results and savings in the field as it looks and performs like new after 3,200 hours of field-proven use in extreme conditions in the winter months in the Duvernay and Montney Shale Play in Alberta, Canada.  

The SPM® QEM 3000 is expected to extend maintenance cycles by a factor of three, the company said, as compared to what operators are achieving in similar service conditions currently. Weir said these enhancements dramatically affect bottom lines, expanding traditional pump lifespan to improve uptime and productivity, while reducing maintenance and cost of ownership by at least 17%.

The SPM® QEM 3000 was designed to withstand the most punishing pressure pumping operations, including continuous duty at a sustained maximum 275,000-pound rod load.

In the Duvernay and Montney formations, the pump operated 16-18 hours per day in temperatures averaging 20-23 degrees Fahrenheit at a frack pressure of 10,500-13,000 psi, average rod load of 206,250 to 233,750 psi with a 5-inch plunger and a flow rate of 264 to 343 gallons per minute.

Roller bearings looked new after 3,200-hours and shell bearings had considerable life remaining, Weir said. Other wear parts that would normally require replacement, such as guide sleeves, showed insignificant wear and did not require replacement. Moreover, the onboard filtration system delivered clean oil to enhance bearing life through optimized control.

While the traditional frack pump development process typically tests up to 1 million cycles, Weir completed an endurance test of its beta SPM® QEM 3000 in its Fort Worth Research & Development Center lasting three times longer than other pumps in the company’s history. A Calgary-based customer has operated SPM® QEM 3000 pumps that have completed more than 10 million field cycles (about 1,700 hours) without any signs of fatigue to the main components, Weir said.

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