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Well Control for Drilling Engineers and Senior Rig Personnel

Lee A. Richards, PhD, PE

INSTRUCTOR: Lee A. Richards, PhD, PE
DISCIPLINE: Engineering
CEUS: 3.2
AVAILABILITY: Public & In-House

Check back in periodically for updated Public course dates! To schedule an In-House course, contact SCA’s Training Department directly at
SAMPLE TOPIC FROM THE CLASS: "Understanding Well Control Fundamentals: Making Well Control Simple and Understandable"

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Drilling engineers and senior well operations personnel who would like to gain greater understanding of well control principals that go beyond those taught in commercially offered well control courses.


This course is designed to break out of the formula driven well control techniques taught by many commercial well control education providers. The courses offered for well control certification often simply teach personnel to plug numbers into formulas for the answers that they seek. The courses rarely focus on the actual principals governing the equations that are commonly used in well control calculations. Attendees of this course will learn what fundamentally governs well control theory, decision making and operations. In addition, they will be able to determine theoretical pressures throughout the wellbore during well control situations in order to improve decision making in both wellbore design and during well control events.


  • Understand the basic mechanical components of land based BOPs and associated well control equipment.
  • Understand how an accumulator works and the principals of storing energy to operate BOPs in emergency situations.
  • Gain knowledge in fracture pressures and pore pressures and how they related to well control situations.
  • Learn how to effectively recognize kick warning signs and understand the cause associated with each kick indicator discussed.
  • Understand and identify the most prevalent situations that lead to well control events.
  • Understand hydrostatic pressures within the wellbore during drilling operations, both before and after taking a kick.
  • Determine safe margins for working within both fracture and pore pressure gradients.
  • Gain knowledge in gas migration and resultant shoe and surface pressure changes.
  • Understand the principals behind controlling wellbore pressures with managed pressure drilling.



  • BOP components and their operation
  • Accumulator theory and operation
  • Formation evaluation and kick potential
  • Wellbore pressure operating margins
  • Kick warning signs
  • Hydrostatic Pressures
  • Dynamic wellbore pressures