Easy To Use Patents Search & Patent Lawyer Directory

At Patents you can conduct a Patent Search, File a Patent Application, find a Patent Attorney, or search available technology through our Patent Exchange. Patents are available using simple keyword or date criteria. If you are looking to hire a patent attorney, you've come to the right place. Protect your idea and hire a patent lawyer.


Search All Patents:



  This Patent May Be For Sale or Lease. Contact Us

  Is This Your Patent? Claim This Patent Now.



Register or Login To Download This Patent As A PDF




United States Patent Application 20180179828
Kind Code A1
Johnson; Neldon P. June 28, 2018

OIL AND GAS WELL DRILL PIPE ELECTRICAL AND COMMUNICATION ASSEMBLY

Abstract

An electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells. A resilient pipe segment lining having an embedded lining conductive element extending from a first lining inductive element to a second lining inductive element is affixed to the interior surface of the pipe segment. A support sleeve dimensioned for slidable mating with the interior surface of the resilient pipe segment lining has an embedded sleeve conductive element extending from a first sleeve inductive element to a second sleeve inductive element. The position of the first and second sleeve inductive elements respectively provide for them to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the first and second lining inductive elements respectively as the pipe segments are threaded together.


Inventors: Johnson; Neldon P.; (Delta, UT)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Black Night Enterprises, Inc.

Oasis

UT

US
Assignee: Black Night Enterprises, Inc.
Oasis
UT

Family ID: 1000002395440
Appl. No.: 15/391827
Filed: December 27, 2016


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: E21B 17/028 20130101; E21B 17/042 20130101; E21B 47/122 20130101; E21B 17/003 20130101
International Class: E21B 17/02 20060101 E21B017/02; E21B 17/00 20060101 E21B017/00; E21B 47/12 20060101 E21B047/12; E21B 17/042 20060101 E21B017/042

Claims



1. An electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells, each drill pipe segment having a segment first end and a segment second end, the segment first end having a tapered female threaded connector with a female connector inside end and the segment second end having a tapered male threaded connector with a male connector outside end, the tapered female threaded connector having a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered male threaded connector of a first adjacent pipe segment, and the tapered male threaded connector having a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered female threaded connector of a second adjacent pipe segment, each pipe segment having a segment interior surface extending from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end, the electrical transmission assembly comprising: a resilient pipe segment lining affixed to the segment interior surface and extending from proximal to the female connector inside end to proximal to the male connector outside end, the resilient pipe segment lining having a lining interior surface; a lining conductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining; a first lining inductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining at a first lining inductive element position and a second lining inductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining at a second lining inductive element position, the lining conductive element extending from the first lining inductive element to the second lining inductive element; a support sleeve having a sleeve insertion portion and a sleeve extension portion, the sleeve insertion portion being dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining at the female connector inside end and for insertion in the resilient pipe segment lining at the female connector inside end a sleeve insertion dimension, the sleeve extension portion being dimensioned for extending from the female connector inside end a sleeve extension dimension with the sleeve insertion portion slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining, and the sleeve extension portion being dimensioned for insertion in and slidable mating with a first adjacent segment resilient pipe segment lining at a first adjacent segment male connector outside end of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector; a sleeve conductive element embedded in the support sleeve; a first sleeve inductive element embedded in the support sleeve at a first sleeve inductive element position and a second sleeve inductive element embedded in the support sleeve at a second sleeve inductive element position, the sleeve conductive element extending from the first sleeve inductive element to the second sleeve inductive element, the first sleeve inductive element position providing for the first sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the first lining inductive element as the sleeve insertion portion of the support sleeve is inserted in the female connector inside end to a sleeve service position and slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining, and providing for the second sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the second lining inductive element of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector of the pipe segment and the support sleeve extension portion is inserted in the male connector outside end and slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining of the first adjacent pipe segment.

2. The electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells as recited in claim 1 wherein the resilient pipe segment lining extends from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end.

3. An electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells, each drill pipe segment having a segment first end and a segment second end, the segment first end having a tapered female threaded connector with a female connector inside end and the segment second end having a tapered male threaded connector with a male connector outside end, the tapered female threaded connector having a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered male threaded connector of a first adjacent pipe segment, and the tapered male threaded connector having a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered female threaded connector of a second adjacent pipe segment, each pipe segment having a segment interior surface extending from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end, the electrical transmission assembly comprising: a resilient pipe segment lining affixed to the segment interior surface and extending from proximal to the female connector inside end to proximal to the male connector outside end, the resilient pipe segment lining having a lining interior surface; a lining conductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining; a first lining inductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining at a first lining inductive element position and a second lining inductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining at a second lining inductive element position, the lining conductive element extending from the first lining inductive element to the second lining inductive element; a support sleeve having a sleeve insertion portion and a sleeve extension portion, the sleeve insertion portion being dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining at the female connector inside end, and the sleeve extension portion being dimensioned for insertion in and slidable mating with a first adjacent segment resilient pipe segment lining at a first adjacent segment male connector outside end of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector; a sleeve conductive element embedded in the support sleeve; a first sleeve inductive element embedded in the support sleeve at a first sleeve inductive element position and a second sleeve inductive element embedded in the support sleeve at a second sleeve inductive element position, the sleeve conductive element extending from the first sleeve inductive element to the second sleeve inductive element, the first sleeve inductive element position providing for the first sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the first lining inductive element as the sleeve insertion portion of the support sleeve is inserted in the female connector inside end to a sleeve service position and slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining, and providing for the second sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the second lining inductive element of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector of the pipe segment and the support sleeve extension portion is inserted in the male connector outside end and slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining of the first adjacent pipe segment.

4. The electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells as recited in claim 3 wherein the resilient pipe segment lining extends from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end.

5. An electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells, each drill pipe segment having a segment first end and a segment second end, the segment first end having a tapered female threaded connector with a female connector inside end and the segment second end having a tapered male threaded connector with a male connector outside end, the tapered female threaded connector having a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered male threaded connector of a first adjacent pipe segment, and the tapered male threaded connector having a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered female threaded connector of a second adjacent pipe segment, each pipe segment having a segment interior surface extending from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end, the electrical transmission assembly comprising: a resilient pipe segment lining affixed to the segment interior surface and extending from proximal to the female connector inside end to proximal to the male connector outside end, the resilient pipe segment lining having a lining interior surface; a lining conductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining; a first lining inductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining at a first lining inductive element position and a second lining inductive element embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining at a second lining inductive element position, the lining conductive element extending from the first lining inductive element to the second lining inductive element; a support sleeve dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining at the female connector inside end and for slidable mating with a first adjacent segment resilient pipe segment lining at a first adjacent segment male connector outside end of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector; a sleeve conductive element embedded in the support sleeve; a first sleeve inductive element embedded in the support sleeve at a first sleeve inductive element position and a second sleeve inductive element embedded in the support sleeve at a second sleeve inductive element position, the sleeve conductive element extending from the first sleeve inductive element to the second sleeve inductive element, the first sleeve inductive element position providing for the first sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the first lining inductive element as the support sleeve is inserted in the female connector inside end to a sleeve service position and slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining, and providing for the second sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to the second lining inductive element of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector of the pipe segment and the support sleeve is inserted in the male connector outside end and slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining of the first adjacent pipe segment.

6. The electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells as recited in claim 5 wherein the resilient pipe segment lining extends from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end.
Description



BACKGROUND

[0001] During modern drilling operations, data is acquired from drilling rig sensors for a range of purposes such as (1) monitoring and managing the smooth operation of drilling; (2) making a detailed log of the geologic formations penetrated by a borehole; (3) generating operations statistics and performance data. Measurement While Drilling (MWD), and Logging While Drilling (LWD) are terms commonly used in the industry for collection of data from drilling rig sensors. The term MWD refers to directional drilling measurements, e.g., for decision support for the smooth operation of the drilling, while LWD refers to measurements concerning the geological formation made while drilling.

[0002] MWD data may include measurements taken of the wellbore inclination from vertical and inclination from magnetic north. Directional survey measurements are typically taken by three orthogonally mounted accelerometers to measure inclination, and three orthogonally mounted magnetometers which measure direction (azimuth). Gyroscopic tools may also be used to measure Azimuth. MWD tools are generally capable of taking directional surveys in real time. With this data, a three-dimensional plot of the path of the well can be produced. A MWD Operator monitors the trajectory of the hole as it is drilled, using data that is updated and processed every few seconds or faster. This information is then used to drill in a pre-planned direction into the formation which contains the oil, gas, water or condensate. Measurements may also be taken of natural gamma ray emissions from the rock for use in determining what type of rock formation is being drilled, and, thus, by comparison with existing seismic data, the real-time location of the wellbore in relation to known formations. Directional drillers rely on receiving accurate, quality tested, real time data from the MWD Operator to allow them to keep the well drilling on the planned trajectory. For the directional driller to steer the well towards a target zone, he must know where the well is going, and what the effects of his steering efforts are.

[0003] Downhole electrical and mechanical power may be provided by downhole turbine systems, which use the energy of the drill fluid flow, battery units, or a combination of both.

[0004] MWD tools can be used to provide a variety of information about the conditions at the drill bit. The information may include rotational speed of the drill string, smoothness of that rotation, type and severity of any vibration downhole, downhole temperature, torque and weight on bit, and mud flow rate.

[0005] This information can be used by the operator to drill the well more efficiently, and to ensure that the MWD tool and any other downhole tools, such as a mud motor, rotary steerable systems, and LWD tools, are operated within their technical specifications to prevent tool failure. This information is also valuable to Geologists responsible for the well information about the formation which is being drilled.

[0006] There are a number of methods used to transmit data from the surface and the drill bit or other downhole tools, and to transmit data between the drill bit and other downhole tools and sensors to the surface. A common method of data transmission used by MWD tools is the use of drill fluid pressure signals. Downhole, a valve is operated to restrict the flow of the drilling mud (slurry) according to the digital information to be transmitted. This creates pressure fluctuations representing the information. The pressure fluctuations propagate within the drilling fluid towards the surface where they are received from pressure sensors. On the surface, the received pressure signals are processed by computers to extract the information.

[0007] Other measurements often require separate LWD tools, which communicate with the MWD tools downhole through internal wires. These tools incorporate an electrical insulator in the drill string. To transmit data, the tool generates a modulated voltage (electronic pulse telemetry) between the top part (the main drill string, above the insulator), and the bottom part (the drill bit, and other tools located below the insulator of the MWD tool). On surface, a wire is attached to the wellhead, which makes contact with the drill pipe at the surface. A second wire is attached to a rod driven into the ground near the wellhead. The wellhead and the ground rod form the two electrodes of a dipole antenna. The voltage difference between the two electrodes is the receive signal that is decoded by a computer. The tool generates voltage differences between the drill string sections in the pattern of very low frequency (2-12 Hz) waves. The data is imposed on the waves through digital modulation. In addition, many of these tools are also capable of receiving data from the surface in the same way, while mud-pulse-based tools rely on changes in the drilling parameters, such as rotation speed of the drill string or the mud flow rate, to send information from the surface to downhole tools. Making changes to the drilling parameters in order to send information to the tools generally interrupts the drilling process, causing lost time. Compared to mud-pulse telemetry, electronic pulse telemetry is more effective in certain specialized situations, such as under balanced drilling or when using air as drilling fluid. It is capable of transmitting data up to ten times faster. However, it generally falls short when drilling exceptionally deep wells, and the signal can lose strength rapidly in certain types of formations, becoming undetectable at only a few thousand feet of depth.

[0008] For the modern drilling of directional, deep wells, there is increasing use of transmission wire assemblies incorporating insulated wire conductors for the transmission of data signals between the surface and the drill bit and other downhole tools and sensors. Electrical transmission wire assemblies of this variety may also used for the transmission of electric power downhole from the surface. Many of the oil wells and many of the gas wells being drilled today are drilled to depths of 5,000 to 15,000 feet. With the common 31 foot length for the pipe segments, often referred to as "drill rods", of the drill string used to drill such wells, this range of well depths requires between 160 and 480 pipe segments. At the bottom of the drill string is a drill bit that may operate to drill through rock by torque applied at the surface and transmitted to the drill bit through the drill string. The pipe segments of the drill string transmit drill fluid pumped from a drill fluid pump located at the surface to the drill bit for cooling and flushing the drill bit and pushing the rock cuttings from the drill bit up the annular space between the drill string and the rock wall of the borehole, or well casing, to the surface. For directional drilling control signals that are to be transmitted by a transmission wire assembly from the surface to the drill bit, and for MWD and LWD signals that are transmitted by a transmission wire assembly from borehole sensors to the surface, the transmission wire assembly must provide for the segment by segment assembly of the drill pipe and the transmission of the control signals and the sensor signals from segment to segment for the entire length of the drill string. The simplest of such transmission wire assemblies consist merely of an insulated wire, with periodic sealed mechanical and electrical connections, freely positioned in the inner fluid chamber of the drill pipe segments of the drill string which is used for the pumping of drill fluid from the surface to the drill bit. The transmission wire may be periodically attached to the drill string. More complex transmission wire assemblies involve electrical or induction connections at each pipe segment joint between connected pipe segments.

[0009] Several oilfield equipment companies are currently marketing wired drill pipe systems. These systems use electrical wires built into every component of the drill string, which transmit electrical signals directly between the surface and the downhole tools. These systems provide data transmission rates orders of magnitude greater than anything possible with mud-pulse or electromagnetic telemetry, both from downhole tools to the surface and from the surface to downhole tools.

[0010] There are a number of transmission wire assemblies and systems disclosed in the prior art providing for the direct transmission of electrical signals between the surface and the drill bit, downhole tools, and downhole sensors. Those prior art assemblies and systems have met with varying degrees of success. Prior art assemblies and systems have varying limitations and vulnerabilities, including vulnerability to physical damage during installation or operation, difficulty and unreliability of assembly, and signal transmission unreliability.

[0011] In the present specification, including the claims, the term "electrical transmission assembly" as applied to the present invention, for use with drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells, shall be defined to include an electronic transmission assembly for electronic communication signal transmission between adjacent drill pipe segments of a drill string comprised of a plurality of drill pipe segments, and shall be defined to include an electrical transmission assembly for electrical power transmission between adjacent drill pipe segments of a drill string comprised of a plurality of drill pipe segments.

[0012] An objective of the present invention is to provide an electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells with enhanced ease of drill string assembly and reduced vulnerability during installation and operation.

[0013] A further objective of the present invention is to provide an electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells with improved reliability for achieving desired electrical connectivity during drill string assembly and improved reliability of signal transmission during operation.

[0014] A still further objective of the present invention is to provide an electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells with enhanced signal strength maintenance for directional, deep well drilling.

[0015] A still further objective of the present invention is to provide an electrical transmission assembly for drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells with enhanced signal strength maintenance for MWD tools and LWD tools.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0016] The electrical transmission assembly of the present invention provides for electronic communication signal transmission or for electrical power transmission between adjacent drill pipe segments of a drill string, for oil or gas well drilling, comprised of a plurality of drill pipe segments. Each drill pipe segment has a segment first end and a segment second end. The segment first end has a tapered female threaded connector with a female connector inside end and the segment second end has a tapered male threaded connector with a male connector outside end. The tapered female threaded connector typically has a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered male threaded connector of a first adjacent pipe segment, and the tapered male threaded connector has a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered female threaded connector of a second adjacent pipe segment. The tapered female threaded connector may be mechanically coupled with the tapered male threaded connector of a first adjacent pipe segment by the tapered male threaded connector of the first adjacent pipe segment being threaded together with the tapered female threaded connector. Likewise, the tapered male threaded connector may be mechanically coupled with the tapered female threaded connector of a second adjacent pipe segment by the tapered male threaded connector being threaded together with the tapered female threaded connector of the second adjacent pipe segment. Each drill pipe segment has a segment interior surface which extends from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end.

[0017] A preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly of the present invention may incorporate a resilient pipe segment lining which is affixed to the segment interior surface and which may preferably extend from the female connector inside end to the male connector outside end. The resilient pipe segment lining may preferably be bonded to the segment interior surface, but alternatively may be affixed to the segment interior surface by means that will be known to persons of skill in the art, in view of the disclosures of this specification and the drawings.

[0018] The resilient pipe segment lining may have one or more lining conductive elements which may be embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining and may preferably extend from a first lining inductive element to a second lining inductive element. Preferably the lining conductive elements and the lining inductive elements are completely encased and sealed by the resilient pipe segment lining, thereby protecting the lining conductive elements and the lining inductive elements from direct exposure to the environment of the drill string.

[0019] A preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly of the present invention incorporates a support sleeve which may have a sleeve insertion portion and a sleeve extension portion. The sleeve insertion portion may be dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining at the female connector inside end. The sleeve extension portion may be dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining at the male connector outside end in the pipe joint of the pipe segment with the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector outside end of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector inside end of the pipe segment.

[0020] One or more sleeve conductive elements may be embedded in the support sleeve and may preferably extend from a first sleeve inductive element positioned at a first sleeve inductive element position to a second sleeve inductive element positioned at a second sleeve inductive element position. The first sleeve inductive element position provides for the first sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to a first lining inductive element as the sleeve insertion portion of the support sleeve is inserted in the resilient pipe segment lining at the female connector inside end, positioning the support sleeve in the service position. With the support sleeve in the sleeve service position, the second sleeve inductive element position provides for the second sleeve inductive element to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to a second lining inductive element of the first adjacent pipe segment as the male connector outside end of the first adjacent pipe segment is threaded into the female connector inside end of the pipe segment. The foregoing may be repeated for each pipe joint of the drill string. This provides for the transfer of an electrical communication signal or electric power between the pipe segments of the drill string.

[0021] In addition to providing for the electrical connectivity between each of the pipe segments through the inductive interaction between the first sleeve inductive element and the first lining inductive element, and through the inductive interaction between the second sleeve inductive element and the second lining inductive element, the support sleeve may provide support and protection to the resilient pipe segment lining at and proximal to the first lining end at the female connector inside end, and at and proximal to the second lining end at the male connector outside end.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0022] FIG. 1 is a cross-section of a portion of a typical drill string for an oil and gas well.

[0023] FIG. 2 is a cross-section of a portion of a typical drill string for an oil and gas well with a preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly of the present invention providing for electrical transmission between adjacent pipe segments.

[0024] FIG. 3 is a cross-section detail of a preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly of the present invention providing for electrical transmission between a pipe segment and a first adjacent pipe segment.

[0025] FIG. 4 is an electrical components schematic of a preferred embodiment of electrical transmission assembly of the present invention illustrating a preferred radial and longitudinal positioning of a first sleeve inductive element with respect to a first lining inductive element and a preferred radial and longitudinal positioning of a second sleeve inductive element with respect to a second lining inductive element.

[0026] FIG. 5 is a cross-section detail of an alternative preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly of the present invention providing for electrical transmission between a pipe segment and a first adjacent pipe segment, illustrating an optional female connector lining offset and an optional male connector lining offset.

[0027] FIG. 6 is an exploded perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly of the present invention illustrated in FIG. 2 and FIG. 3.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0028] In the present specification, including the claims, the term "electrical transmission assembly" as applied to the present invention, for use with drill pipe segments for a drill string for oil wells and gas wells, shall be defined to include an electronic transmission assembly for electronic communication signal transmission between adjacent drill pipe segments of a drill string comprised of a plurality of drill pipe segments, and shall be defined to include an electrical transmission assembly for electrical power transmission between adjacent drill pipe segments of a drill string comprised of a plurality of drill pipe segments.

[0029] Referring first to FIG. 1, a cross-section of a portion of a typical drill string 13, including a drill pipe segment 11, a first adjacent pipe segment 51, and a second adjacent pipe segment 53.

[0030] Referring now to FIG. 2, a cross-section of a portion of a typical drill string 13, including a drill pipe segment 11, a first adjacent pipe segment 51, and a second adjacent pipe segment 53, is shown with a preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention providing for electrical transmission between the drill pipe segment 11 and the first adjacent pipe segment 51, and between the drill pipe segment 11 and the second adjacent pipe segment 53.

[0031] Referring now to FIG. 3, a cross-section detail is shown of the preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention for use with drill pipe segments 11 for a drill string 13, as shown in FIG. 2. Each drill pipe segment 11 has a segment first end 21 and a segment second end 23. The segment first end 21, for typical drill pipe segments 11, may have a tapered female threaded connector 31 with a female connector inside end 33 and the segment second end 35 may have a tapered male threaded connector 41 with a male connector outside end 43. The tapered female threaded connector 31 typically has a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered male threaded connector 41 of a first adjacent pipe segment 51, and the tapered male threaded connector 41 has a mechanical coupling capability for mechanically coupling with the tapered female threaded connector 31 of a second adjacent pipe segment 53. The tapered female threaded connector 31 may be mechanically coupled with the tapered male threaded connector 41 of a first adjacent pipe segment 51 by the tapered male threaded connector 41 of the first adjacent pipe segment 51 being threaded together with the tapered female threaded connector 31. Likewise, the tapered male threaded connector 41 may be mechanically coupled with the tapered female threaded connector 31 of a second adjacent pipe segment 53 by the tapered male threaded connector 41 being threaded together with the tapered female threaded connector 31 of the second adjacent pipe segment 53. Each drill pipe segment 11 has a segment interior surface 61 which extends from the female connector inside end 33 to the male connector outside end 43 as shown in FIG. 2.

[0032] The preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 shown in FIG. 2 and FIG. 3 may incorporate a resilient pipe segment lining 71 which is affixed to the segment interior surface 61 and which may preferably extend from the female connector inside end 33 to the male connector outside end 43. The resilient pipe segment lining 71 may preferably be bonded to the segment interior surface 61, but alternatively may be affixed to the segment interior surface 61 by means that will be known to persons of skill in the art, in view of the disclosures of this specification and the drawings. Also, while for a preferred embodiment, the resilient pipe segment lining 71 may preferably extend, for each pipe segment, from the female connector inside end 33 to the male connector outside end 43, alternative embodiments may provide for a female connector lining offset 73 or a male connector lining offset 75, or both, as shown in FIG. 5. The resilient pipe segment lining 71 has a lining interior surface 81 as shown in FIG. 3.

[0033] The resilient pipe segment lining 71 may have one or more lining conductive elements 91 which may be embedded in the resilient pipe segment lining 71 as shown in FIG. 3, and may preferably extend from a first lining inductive element 101, which may preferably be positioned a first lining inductive element offset 103 from the female connector inside end 33, to a second lining inductive element 105, which may preferably be positioned a second lining inductive element offset 107 from the male connector outside end 43. As shown in FIG. 3, preferred embodiments of the resilient pipe segment lining 71, the lining conductive elements 91, and the lining inductive elements 101, 105, provide for the lining conductive elements 91, and the lining inductive elements 101, 105 to be completely encased and sealed by thee resilient pipe segment lining 71, thereby protecting the lining conductive elements 91, and the lining inductive elements 101, 105 from direct exposure to the environment of the drill string 13. In view of the disclosures of this specification and the drawings, other embodiments of the resilient pipe segment lining 71, the lining conductive elements 91, and the lining inductive elements 101, 105 will be known to persons of ordinary skill in the art. Various types of resilient material may be used for the resilient pipe segment lining 71 which may provide for ease of installation in the pipe segments 11 by mechanical, pressure, temperature, or chemical processes in manufacturing known to persons of skill in the art.

[0034] Referring further to FIG. 3, a cross-section detail at a pipe joint 121 of the pipe segment 11 with the first adjacent pipe segment 51 is shown for the preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention shown in FIG. 2. The preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention shown in FIG. 2 and FIG. 3 incorporates a support sleeve 111 which may have a sleeve insertion portion 113 and a sleeve extension portion 115. The sleeve insertion portion 113 may be dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining 71 at the female connector inside end 33 of the pipe segment 11. The resilient pipe segment lining 71 may have a first sleeve stop 117 which serves to properly position the support sleeve 111 in the desired sleeve service position 123 as the sleeve insertion portion 113 is slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining 71. The sleeve extension portion 115 may be dimensioned for slidable mating with the resilient pipe segment lining 71 at the male connector outside end 43 in the pipe joint 121 of the pipe segment 11 with the first adjacent pipe segment 51 as the male connector outside end 43 of the first adjacent pipe segment 51 is threaded into the female connector inside end 33 of the pipe segment 11. The resilient pipe segment lining 71 may have a second sleeve stop 119 which serves, along with the first sleeve stop 117 to maintain the support sleeve in the desired sleeve service position 123 at the pipe joint 121. A support sleeve 111 may be slidably mated with the resilient pipe segment lining 71 at the female connector inside end 33 and the male connector outside end 43 of each pipe joint 121 of the drill string 13 as shown in FIG. 2. Other devices for positioning and maintaining the support sleeve 111 in the service position 123 will be known to persons of skill in the art, in view of the disclosures of this specification and the drawings.

[0035] Referring further to FIG. 3, one or more sleeve conductive elements 131 may be embedded in the support sleeve 111 and may preferably extend from a first sleeve inductive element 141 positioned at a first sleeve inductive element position 151 to a second sleeve inductive element 143 positioned at a second sleeve inductive element position 153. The first sleeve inductive element position 151 provides for the first sleeve inductive element 141 to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to a first lining inductive element 101 as the sleeve insertion portion 113 of the support sleeve 111 is inserted in the resilient pipe segment lining 71 at the female connector inside end 33, positioning the support sleeve 111 in the service position 123. With the support sleeve in the sleeve service position 123, the second sleeve inductive element position 153 provides for the second sleeve inductive element 143 to be positioned radially and longitudinally proximal to a second lining inductive element 105 of the first adjacent pipe segment 51 as the male connector outside end 43 of the first adjacent pipe segment 51 is threaded into the female connector inside end 33 of the pipe segment 11.

[0036] The foregoing may be repeated for each pipe joint 121 of the drill string 13 as shown in FIG. 2. FIG. 3 illustrates a typical a cross-section detail of a preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention that may be used at each of the pipe joints 121 of the drill pipe segments 11 of a drill string 13, as shown in FIG. 2. Referring also to FIG. 6, an exploded perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention illustrated in FIG. 2 and FIG. 3 is shown.

[0037] Referring now to FIG. 4, a schematic is shown of the electrical transmission components and a relative positioning of the electrical transmission components of the electrical transmission assembly 1 of the present invention with the support sleeve 111 in the sleeve service position 123 as shown in FIG. 3 and FIG. 6. A preferred radial and longitudinal positioning of the first sleeve inductive element 141 with respect to the first lining inductive element 101 and a preferred radial and longitudinal positioning of the second sleeve inductive element 143 with respect to the second lining inductive element 105, is shown. This may provide for the inductive transfer of an electrical communication signal or electric power between the first adjacent pipe segment 51 and the pipe segment 11, and similarly may provide for the inductive transfer of an electrical communication signal or electric power between any two pipe segments 11 of the drill string 13.

[0038] In addition to providing for the electrical connectivity between each of the pipe segments 11 through the inductive interaction between the first sleeve inductive element 141 and the first lining inductive element 101, and through the inductive interaction between the second sleeve inductive element 143 and the second lining inductive element 105, the support sleeve 111 may provide support and protection to the resilient pipe segment lining 71 at and proximal to the first lining end 161 at the female connector inside end 33, and at and proximal to the second lining end 163 at the male connector outside end 43, as shown in FIG. 2 and FIG. 3. For a preferred embodiment, the support sleeve 111 may be constructed of a strong, durable material capable of providing firm support for the resilient pipe segment lining 71 proximal to the pipe joint 121, capable of enduring the harsh environment of the drill string 13, including high temperatures and the pressurized drill fluid, and capable of sealing and protecting the sleeve conductive element 131, the first sleeve inductive element 141, and the second sleeve inductive element 143. The various types of materials that may be used for the support sleeve 111 will be known to persons of skill in the art, in view of the disclosures of this specification and the drawings.

[0039] In view of the disclosures of this specification and the drawings, other embodiments and other variations and modifications of the embodiments described above will be obvious to persons of ordinary skill in the art. Therefore, the foregoing is intended to be merely illustrative of the invention and the invention is limited only by the following claims and the doctrine of equivalents.

* * * * *

File A Patent Application

  • Protect your idea -- Don't let someone else file first. Learn more.

  • 3 Easy Steps -- Complete Form, application Review, and File. See our process.

  • Attorney Review -- Have your application reviewed by a Patent Attorney. See what's included.