Brochure | September 26, 2011

3M™ Glass Bubbles HGS Series

3M™ Glass Bubbles HGS Series are engineered hollow glass spheres for use as a density reducing agent for oil and gas drilling fluids and drilling cements.

The spherical shape of 3M glass bubbles offers a number of important benefits, including lower viscosity and improved flow. The chemically-stable soda-lime-borosilicate glass composition of 3M glass bubbles makes them virtually insoluble in water or oil. They are also non-compressible. Their low alkalinity gives 3M glass bubbles compatibility with most resins, stable viscosity and long shelf life.

3M glass bubbles HGS series are specially formulated for a high strength-to-weight ratio. This allows greater survivability under demanding downhole conditions. 3M glass bubbles are available in varying densities and crush strengths to help meet specific downhole conditions.

In drilling fluids, 3M glass bubbles help attain fluid densities as low as 5.5 pounds per gallon (0.66 kg/l). 3M glass bubbles-based fluids control density efficiently, process easily at rig site and are compatible with surface cleaning and other downhole equipment. These fluids also are ideal for the range of temperatures, pressures and hostile environments found downhole.

Drilling fluids made with 3M glass bubbles provide an economic alternative to aerated drilling fluids. In general, these reduced-density fluids are homogenous, incompressible, stable and allow measurement while drilling (MWD). They provide good borehole stability and excellent hole cleaning. These low density fluids permit at balance, near balance or underbalanced drilling. In general, reduction of differential pressure can result in:

  • Higher productivity through increased rate of penetration (ROP)
  • Elimination of differential sticking
  • Reduction or elimination of lost circulation
  • Reduction in formation damage


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