Curtin students attend online annular casing pressure management technical seminar

Miri – 17 September 2021 – Industrial talks or guest lectures by industry professionals are a key component of the engineering curriculum at Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) to complement students’ classroom studies. In addition to reinforcing theories learnt in their classes, they also expose students to the latest industry trends and real-life practices, as well give them a better idea of working conditions and career prospects in their chosen fields.

Third-year petroleum engineering students of Curtin Malaysia under the tutelage of petroleum engineering lecturer Associate Professor Hisham Ben Mahmud had the opportunity to learn more about annular casing pressure management during an online technical seminar conducted by Staff Engineer Chua Hing Leong of PETRONAS Carigali Sdn. Bhd. recently.

According to Associate Professor Hisham, the seminar was conducted to expose the students to a core petroleum engineering activity (well pressure management) which they are learning about as part of their Petroleum Production Technology and Well Intervention units.

During the seminar, Chua discussed the concepts behind casing pressure management and explained the full life cycle of wells from drilling, completion and production to well intervention. He also explained the classification of annular casing pressure and how Sustained Casing Pressure (SCP), which is the pressure between the casing and tubing of a well, can be an ongoing safety hazard that can cause serious harm or damage to humans, marine life and coastal environments, as well as property. However, annular pressure can be managed in a routine fashion while maintaining an acceptable level of risk.

Chua’s talk also covered other aspects of pressure management such as Maximum Allowable Annulus Surface Pressure (MAASP) and Maximum Allowable Wellhead Operating Pressure (MAWOP). In addition, he showed examples of occurrences of pressure containment failure and their impacts.

Chua is a chemical engineering graduate of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) with almost 20 years’ experience in various roles in the oil and gas industry, including field engineer, wireline manager and well intervention engineer. In his current role as staff engineer, he is responsible for technical authority for technical leadership and provision of technical solutions in the area of well intervention and well integrity.

In thanking Chua for conducting the technical seminar, Associate Professor Hisham said it was a great benefit to the students to be able to learn and get practical examples from an experienced industry professional like Chua.

“Such industry engagement is invaluable to our petroleum engineering programme and students, helping them make connections to what they learn in the classroom to applications in the real-life working environment,” he said.

Curtin Malaysia offers Curtin’s four-year Bachelor of Engineering in Petroleum Engineering (Honours) where students learn how to evaluate, drill, develop and mine oil and gas reserves. They study chemical engineering, drilling, fluid flow through reservoirs, formation evaluation, geology, hydrocarbon phase behaviour, oil and gas field development, petroleum production technology, thermodynamics and well completions engineering.

In addition, they undertake practical study in fluid and reservoir rock and drilling laboratories, and gain industry exposure through field trips to service company offices, and drilling, exploration and production operation sites. They also gain an understanding of global economic trends and corporate profit margins through the study of economics, risk and project management. In their final year, they undertake a major research project, as well as a field development planning and design project.

Assoc. Professor Hisham (top left) and Chua (middle, top row) with some of the students who attended the online technical seminar.

PETRONAS Carigali Staff Engineer Chua Hing Leong.

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