Sabrina Sullivan, Arthur Sullivan, and Ron Elkins
Plungers and More
This paper discusses the principal of ball lifting systems (Lizard) for oil and gas wells and its possible applications. Typical applications are: 1. Acts as moving standing valve to minimize dry runs while reducing tubing wear. 2. Will continually operate in transition area; Lizard will move the to transition flow area to deliver ball to lifting sleeve, unloading wells and work itself to the bottom. 3. Increase lifting depth from 40 degrees to 75 degrees. 4. Stop yo-yo effect between two-piece plungers. A Lizard assembly for a plunger lift system is used to remove fluids and hydrocarbons from a subterranean wellbore includes a ball lifting sleeve meant to act as bumper spring or sit on bumper spring that engages (e.g., unites) and disengages with plunger assembly. The sleeve acts as an orifice to capture hydrocarbons from dead space around bumper spring and centrally force hydrocarbons to plunger assembly with maximum velocity. The ball lifting sleeve provides transfer of ball and liquid column to lifting plunger and assists in transitioning flow area. The sleeve provides softer fall rates reducing damage to lifting plunger and bumper spring. The Lizard assembly provides higher quality plunger operation further down curvature of deviated and horizontal wellbores providing deeper lifting capabilities. The sleeve provides standing valve principles to horizontal and vertical wellbores. The Lizard will unload high volume liquid loads by acting as a movable standing valve and gradually working its way to bumper spring. The Lizard can be utilized to replace bumper springs, reducing tubing restrictions downhole.