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Reactive torque
17 January 2016

Hope you are doing well

Could you explain to me the causes of Reactive Torque (with or without PDM), what is its effect on drilling, and how the fix the issues

Best regards,

4 answer(s)
Project Quality
SPREAD Associates
Total Posts: 108
Join Date: 06/05/09

Well, the simplest explanation is Newton's Third Law:

"Actioni contrariam semper et æqualem esse reactionem: sive corporum duorum actiones in se mutuo semper esse æquales et in partes contrarias dirigi."

And, for those not versed in Latin:

"To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction: or the mutual actions of two bodies upon each other are always equal, and directed to contrary parts."

There is no "fix" as the Three Laws are universal constants, there are workarounds ... all of which simply include planning for the reactive torque expected to be encountered.

Sr. Drilling Engineer
SPREAD Associates
Total Posts: 8
Join Date: 05/09/14
While drilling with PDM, if the reactive torque is excessive, it is often difficult to maintain a tool face.
Short Bit & Tool Co.
Total Posts: 17
Join Date: 11/05/13
In rotary drilling the BHA is robust and is rotated and the torque is read at the surface. In this case reactive torque may be seen as the twist imported into that BHA.
In PDM drilling with stick pipe it is much like Rotary reactive torque and may be read at surface .
PDM drilling with coil tubing produces a back twist in the smaller BHA and CT.
When you use an electric drill the reactive torque is what you feel in the drill.
Short Bit & Tool Co.
Total Posts: 17
Join Date: 11/05/13
You have heard that for every action there is an opposite and equal reaction? The PDC cutters in your bit take a cut into the formation and then are turned to dislodge it. That work being done is measured in torque. The BHA (rotary, PDM, Turbine) provide a base from which that force is transferred. It absorbs the reactive torque.
Posted by

Hamza Hamza


Baker Hughes

Total Posts: 10
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