Determining Root Causes of Drilling Problems by Combining Cases and General Knowledge

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Oil well drilling is a complex process which frequently leads to operational problems. In order to deal with some of these problems, knowledge intensive case based reasoning (KiCBR) has clearly shown potential. An important problem in oil well drilling is hole cleaning, in which a high number of observed parameters and other features are involved. This paper presents how to determine the root causes of poor hole cleaning episodes by means of KiCBR. This will help the drilling crew to apply a proper remedy. The effect of general domain knowledge was demonstrated in a comparative study, in which improved results in terms of similarity assessment and explanation capability were achieved.