What is a Top Drive?
A top drive is a device that rotates a rig's
What does it consist of?
It consists of one or more motors (electric
or hydraulic) connected by gearing to a short section of pipe, the
quill, screwed into a saver sub or the drillstring. The top drive
is suspended from the hook or blocks, so the rotary mechanism is
free to travel up and down the derrick.
What makes a Top Drive special?
A Top Drive is very different from the more
conventional rotary table and kelly method of turning the drillstring.
The Top Drive enables drilling with two or three joint stands instead
of single joints of pipe.
What else does a Top Drive do?
It also enables the driller to quickly engage/disengage
pumps or the rotary while tripping pipe. The newest Top Drives,
like TD Equipment's IntegraLine 150iH, increase our ability to drill
difficult extended-reach well bores. And the Top Drive greatly reduces
frequency of stuck pipe, which is costly.
Situations where using a modern Top Drive is suggested:
Rigs that perform Reverse Circulating
Sites with Performance Drilling and Underbalanced Drilling
Sites for Vertical/Directional Drilling
Projects requiring Horizontal Drilling
Setups designed for SAGD Drilling
Operations that include Pad Drilling
Rigs set up for Geothermal Drilling
Benefits every Top Drive like IntegraLine 150iH
Improved Well Control Response
Greater Directional Control
Improved Pipe Handling and Safety
Simplified Tool Face Orientation
Reduced Connection and Disconnection Times and Costs
Increased Drilling Increments
Increased Core Lengths
Reductions in Pipe Damage frequency /Cost of Stuck Pipes
Quicker engagement of Pumps
Ability to employ either Rig or Top Drive Power Units
Heightened Coring Performance
Reduced Reaming and Circulation time