Progressive Cavity Pump/Motor for Preparing Deep Oil Wells

Technology #14683

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Researchers
Wallace Gregory Sawyer
David B. Dooner
Managed By
Lenny Terry
Assistant Director 352-392-8929
Patent Protection
US Patent Pending US-2016-0208798-A1

Tapered Moineau Design Promotes Durability and Facilitates Downhole Drilling

This progressive cavity pump/motor, based on a tapered, Moineau-style design, is highly durable and facilitates deep oil well drilling. Progressive cavity pumps and motors belong to the positive displacement pump family since they rotate into the physical space occupied by a fluid, forcing it up the shaft. These pumps typically transport fluids to the earth’s surface or drive monitoring equipment deep into drill holes (also known as wellbores or exploration and extraction holes) to procure oil. The system’s progressive cavity mechanism includes a rotor (a rotating gear member) and a stator (a stationary gear member). It can operate as a pump for extracting fluids or as a motor through which fluids can flow to rotate the movable gear member. Existing rotary pumps tend to erode and break down when operated at high speeds. Researchers at the University of Florida have improved upon the standard electric progressive cavity pump system by developing a rotor that is smaller on one end. A tapered design allows the positive displacement pump to last longer. This Moineau-style pump/motor is well positioned to capture a significant portion of the global pump market, which is expected to reach $75.4 billion by 2016.

Application

A tapered, Moineau-style progressive cavity pump/motor that outlasts available oil-drilling equipment

Advantages

  • Features a tapered design that enhances durability, minimizing the need for repairs
  • Compatible with existing equipment, removing a barrier to wide-spread adoption
  • Lasts longer than similar pumps, saving money

Technology

Progressive cavity pumps transfer fluid through small, fixed-shape, discrete cavities created in the space between the rotor (rotating member) and stator (stationary gear member). As the rotor turns, the cavities move upward along the axial length of the pump. The liquid, typically oil, moves towards the earth’s surface at a rate that is proportional to the speed at which the rotor turns. In addition to acting as a fluid extraction device, a progressive cavity pump may also function as a motor when fluid is forced through the interior. This Moineau-style progressive cavity pump/motor is unique in that the rotor is tapered (smaller on one end). The design enhances pump durability to save time and money.