A Jet Pump is an ideal solution for unloading a frack job.  The increased bottom hole pressure (BHP) and high amounts of sand from the subsequent frack create an excellent environment for an application of the Jet Pump. The ability to remove large amounts of sand that causes lengthy downtime and high repair costs of an Electronic Submersible Pump (ESP) makes the jet pump a technology that is commonly used for frack flowback.

In order to be effective, the Jet Pump needs assistance in the form of BHP.  Fracking gives the well more than adequate BHP in most situations.  The Jet Pump is designed to handle the high amount of sands that come out of the well after a frack, however, it can plug up the same as an ESP although not as frequently.  This is where the Jet Pump has a distinct advantage.  While the ESP needs a workover or pulling rig and can be down for days at a time, the Jet Pump can be returned  to surface as simply as reversing the flow of the power fluid.  In less than 90 minutes the Jet Pump can be brought to the surface, cleaned, combination changed, and back down hole to begin producing again.

The worst case scenario for a Jet Pump is cavitation.  Most cases will affect the mixing throat, with severe cases taking the nozzle too. These repairs to the Jet Pump are cheap and easy when compared to burning up the ESP impellers.  Also worth noting, we don’t have any problems with perforation balls or plug parts because we run a gas anchor on the bottom of our standing valve, which keeps those from plugging our Jet Pump.

In most situations the majority of the sands will be coming back during the initial flowback stages, which is why Jet Pumps are so common for companies to use at this point.  The Jet Pump can create a safer environment for the ESP to be used after the frack flowback.  A safer environment will help reduce ESP failures and lower operating expenses by creating cleaner, more efficient production.

Case Analysis:

The well for a frack job we were cleaning up, just north of Stillwater, was roughly 5000ft deep and in a sandy environment.  Our options were limited because the surface piping was only rated for 3,000 psi, but even under those conditions we were injecting at a rate of 50 BBL/Hr at 2,400psi and with that we were getting back 135 BBL/Hr on average. Daily production, discounting injection fluid, is about 2,040 BBL/day.  We received oil back in the first 12 hours and were selling a truck load within the first 3 days.  The gas was unlocked within 24 hours and we were able to switch off propane and onto wellhead gas within a week, after the gas was tested.  Most importantly, they unloaded a lot of sand and have been running their ESP issue free ever since.  Overall they ran their Jet Pump for 30 days and, due to the utilization of our surface package technology, only had fuel costs for 7 days.  The unloading rates had an upward potential but not without piping for higher pressures.