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Патент USA US3070354

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‘Dec. 25, 1962
3970,344
G. H. TAUSCH
PLUNGER ACTUATED' WELL CONTROL
Filed Feb. 20, 1961
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' United States Patent O?hce
1
3,070,344
Patented Dec. 25, 1962
2
gravity return down stroke, and desirably the motor
3,070,344
PLUNGER ACTUATED WELL CONTROL
Gilbert H. Tausch, Houston, Tex., assignor to Cameo, In
corporated, Houston, Tex., a corporation of Texas
Filed Feb. 20, 1961, Ser. No. 90,430
5 Claims. (Cl. 251—-65)
This invention relates to a gas lift system by which
liquid slugs are intermittently raised to the surface ahead
valve 1 should close at approximately the same time and
minimize gas escape.
For present purposes, the motor valve 1 may be con
sidered as being normally held closed by a spring Whose
elastic force can be overcome by the application of .pres
sure gas above a ?exible diaphragm operatively con
nected with the valve and formed as a part of a motor
assembly 7. To cycle valve operation through alternate
of a free piston being elevated through a well eduction lo on and off intervals, a conventional controller 8 operates
tubing by pressure gas accumulation below the piston,
and more particularly to an improved well control re
sponsive to piston arrival at a given point in its travel
stroke.
Devices which sense or detect lift piston arrival at the
wellhead are common for eifecting automatic control
of various instrumentalities including the control of en
ergy transmission to or from working mechanisms for
automatically to charge or deliver a shot of pressure gas
to the motor diaphragm chamber to hold the valve open
for a predetermined time as controlled by a regulated
bleed down of the pressure charge. To eliminate need,
especially if well production is erratic, for frequent at
tention and accurate adjustment of bleed down time,
there is her involved a secondary vent for quickly re
lieving and fully dumping the pressure charge in the
motor coincidently with piston arrival at the wellhead
regulating operation of well systems. As heretofore pro
posed, such devices have been mechanically contacted 20 so as to end immediately the motor valve opening phase
of the operating cycle.
by or magnetically attracted to the piston for either open
In a preferred embodiment of the arrival responsive
ing or closing a ?uid :ilow valve or a swtich in electric
vent valve unit as seen in FIG. 2, a permanent magnet
circuitry by which piston arrival signals a responsive oper
in the form of a cylindrical bar 9 is enclosed for limited
ation.
An object of the present invention is to provide an im 25 longitudinal reciprocation within a hollow housing or
proved magnetic arrival signal involving a few simple
casing comprising a pair of separately machined parts
and low cost parts vfor ready assembly as a compact unit
and in relationship substantially free from heavy work
of brass or other nonmagnetic material. One of the
parts is a cupped member 10 having an elongated tubu
force and wear and which unit affords a rapid respon
lar wall closed at one end by a solid transverse wall con
sive controlling action.
A further object of the invention is to provide a sealed
stituting the base of the cup and the other of which parts
is a removable cap member or end piece 11 having a
relatively shallow internal annular recess on its inner face
chamber having a movable closure wall Whose move
ment controls a working operation and depends on travel
response of a shiftable magnet sealed within the cham
peripherally surrounded by a short length cylindrical
skirt and which cap 11 covers the opposite end of the
35 cupped elongated casing 10. The cylindrical skirt of
ber along with a co-operating body of liquid mercury.
the cup 11 and the elongated tubular wall of the cupped
Another object is to provide a normally closed valve
member 10 are axially aligned and detachably secured
assembly comprising a liquid suspended bar magnet recip
in face to face end clamping relation by a series of screw
rocably guided between a biased valve closing relation
bolts 12 and hold between the clamped together end faces
and a magnetically attracted position for a valve open
40 the rim portion of an impervious ?exible diaphragm 13
ing relation.
of neoprene or the like extending across the hollow
Other objects and advantages will be apparent from
casing as a movable wall or partition sealed peripherally
the following speci?cation and the accompanying drawing
to the casing and subdividing its interior into separate,
wherein FIG. 1 is a fragmentary side elevation with parts
chambers in end to end succession.
in section of a well installation embodying a free pis
On one side of the diaphragm 13, the bar magnet 9 is
ton and a wellhead arrival signal arrangement and FIG. 45
contained within the hollow chamber of the casing and its ‘
2 is a vertical section of the piston arrival responsive
length is slightly less than the distance between the dia
device shown in FIG. 1 but on a larger scale.
phragm 13 and the base end wall of the cup 10 for accom
As typical of a high gas-oil ratio producing well sys
tem, FIG. 1 diagrams a simple cycling arrangement for
modating magnet reciprocation. The bore through the
alternately closing and opening a motor valve 1 in the
out?ow pipe 2 leading from the wellhead end of an
casing 10 intermediate the length thereof has a guide por
tion whose diameter slightly exceeds the external diameter
of the bar magnet and on both sides of this intermediate
portion the internal bore is diametrically enlarged, as at
eduction tubing string 3 which extends downwardly to
a production stratum and through the usual well bore
14 and 15, for longitudinal distances surrounding the op
casing 4. In the shut-off interval when the valve 1 closes
the out?ow pipe line 2, a free piston 5 closely and slide.‘ 55 posite ends of the magnet. In the relative position of the
bly ?tted within the eduction tube 3 will be at the bot
parts as viewed in FIG. 2, the central region of the dia
tom of its stroke with its upwardly seating check valve
phragm 13 affords a sealing seat in stopped abutment with
6 opened for the rise or accumulation of well ?uids
the inner face of a frusto-conical boss 16 projecting in
above the piston. Timed actuation of the motor valve
wardly from the end cap 11 at the recessed area thereof
1 to open the out?ow pipe line 2 vents the top of the
and in coaxial relation with the hollow casing. This boss ‘
eduction tube or effects a reduction in pressure through
out the length of the eduction tube above the piston 5
and in response to higher pressure below the piston, its
valve 6 will close and seal the piston against ?uid pas
16 surrounds or has a drilled passageway 17 communicat
ing with an enlarged and tapped opening through the cap
piece 11 and is for coupled connection with a ?tting form
sage thereby in either direction, thereby trapping against 65 ing a part of a ?uid ?ow conduit 18 which is in communi
cation with the pleasure chamber of the motor 7. The
back ?ow any liquid above the piston, and the piston it
self Will be elevated to raise the liquid toward the sur
face and for ejection into the out?ow line 2. With ar
rival of the piston 5 at the wellhead, a striker abutment
inner end of the passage 17 is thus valved and is normally
closed by the diaphragm 13. Diaphragm de?ection away
is contacted by and shifts the piston check valve 6 to its
open position, thereby conditioning the piston for a
particular arrangement shown, the passage 17 is vented
through the annular chamber space within the hollow end
from the boss 16 uncovers the ?ow passage 17 and in the
3,070,344
3
face of the cap member 11 and a drilled port 19 opening
4
to the surrounding atmosphere.
Adjacent the ?exible partition wall 13, the end of the
said casing to present an end thereof adjacent the path of
a movable magnetic body whose presence within the ?eld
of the magnet will induce movement of the bar magnet
bar magnet 9 has a peripheral enlargement or head 20
and terminates in a reduced diameter centrally disposed
and ‘?at nosed boss 21 whose end face is for concentrated
force transmitting contact with the central area of the
?exible diaphragm on the side thereof opposite the face
toward the last mentioned end of the casing and an abut
ment seat postioned on the other side of the ?exible dia
phragm for contact thereby as a limit to diaphragm
?exure in one direction and provided with a ?uid passage
to be opened and closed by ?exure of the diaphragm away
portion which seats on the flat end of the frusto-conical
from and into contact with said seat.
boss 16.
The enlarged head 29 of the bar magnet oper
2. In a magnetic valve assembly of the character de
ates within the counterbore 15 of the elongated casing 10
scribed, an axially reciprocable permanent bar magnet
and constitutes a seating abutment for the free end of a
compressed coil spring 22 sleeved on the bar magnet and
grounded at its opposite end on the shoulder at the bottom
of a magnetic member in juxtaposed relation to one end
of the magnet and within the ?eld thereof, a chambered
arranged for endwise travel in one direction upon arrival
of the counterbore, whereby the bar magnet is yieldably 15 casing of nonmagnetic material enclosing the bar magnet
and guiding reciprocation thereof, means for mounting
biased toward the casing end cap 11 and normally seats
the diaphragm 13 on the boss 16 as a travel limit stop and
to close the passage 17. Movement of the magnet for
diaphragm de?ection away from the boss to uncover the
vent port 17 will occur against spring force whenever a 20
piece of magnetic material is presented adjacent the base
of the casing 10 and within the magnetic ?eld whose force
the casing to present one wall adjacent the path of said
magnetic member, spring means interposed between the
casing and the bar magnet normally urging the bar mag
net in the direction opposite to the aforesaid one direction,
a chamber end wall having a passage for ?uid to be valved
will draw the magnet toward the base and overcome the
and an inwardly extending boss surrounding the passage
and terminating in an abutment seat for co-operation with
spring bias.
the bar magnet as a limit stop to its movement in one di
For installation at the wellhead, the base end of the
cupped casing 10 is peripherally screw threaded into a
side opening in an adapter ?tting 23 forming an extended
rection and for valving said passage, an imperforate parti
tion wall within the casing and between said abutment
seat and the bar magnet and co~operating with the casing
to seal off the bar magnet enclosing chamber and a body
part of the reduction tubing string 3. Accordingly, di
rection of magnet travel is laterally of the travel path of
of liquid mercury entrapped within the chamber by said
the free piston. It follows that whenever and so long as 30 partition wall and buoyantly suspending the bar magnet.
a wall portion of magnetic material carried by a free pis
3. In a magnetically actuated valve, a cup shaped casing
ton is presented to the casing 16 at the top of the piston
having a nonmagnetic wall, a shiftable permanent magnet
stroke, the bar magnet will be drawn toward the piston
enclosed within the casing, spring means interposed be
and away from valve closing relation. The result will be
tween the casing and the magnet and active to bias the
that the pressure charge in the motor 7, which then holds 35 magnet away from the base end of the cup shaped casing,
the out?ow valve 1 open, will be relieved by the full open
mounting means for positioning said base end with the
ing of the vent tube 18 as controlled by the arrival valve
?eld of said magnet projected into intersecting relation
unit.
with the path of a movable magnetic body whose presence
An important aspect of the valve unit is that the im
within the ?eld attracts the magnet against the bias of said
pervious partition wall 13 seals the casing chamber con 40 spring means, a ?exible diaphragm ?tted to the opposite
taining the movable magnet 9 and the closed chamber
end of the cup shaped casing for contact by an adjacent
eliminates entrance thereto of dirt and minimizes wear
end of the magnet under bias of said spring means, a body
and lubrication problems. More particularly, a body of
of liquid mercury sealed within the casing by said dia
mercury 24 or other similar heavy ?uid partially ?lls or
phragm and an end member ?xed to said opposite end of
occupies the enclosed chamber space around the magnet
the casing and provided with a ?uid flow passage and
9 with any remainder of the space being either void or
with an annular seat at the inner end of the passage with
containing air at or below atmospheric pressure for ac
which the ?exible diaphragm has passage closing abut
commodating diaphragm de?ection and decrease in cham
ment in the absence of magnet response in opposition to
.ber volume. The body of liquid mercury and the bar
said spring means.
magnet in relation to one another afford a degree of buoy 50
4. For use with a gas lift well installation having an
ancy or magnet ?oating tendency with little or no fric
eduction tubing portion for travel therein of a free piston
tional bearing on the casing wall. Only a short range of
having a magnetic wall portion, a magnetic valve assembly
magnet travel is needed for valving action and very little
including a chambered casing of nonmagnetic material
endwise displacement of liquid occurs upon magnet move
adapted to be mounted on a well eduction tubing, a ?exi
ment. However, the casing bore enlargements 14 and 15
ble partition Wall subdividing the casing chamber into a
at the opposite ends of the magnet, serve to reduce restric
sealed space on one side of the wall and a ?uid ?ow space
tion to liquid displacements in the end regions between
on the opposite side of the wall, an abutment formation
the terminal faces of the casing and magnet. A reduction
in said ?uid space having a passage therethrough and pro
if friction enables an effective snapping action and mini
viding an annular seat around the inner end of the pas
mizes wear for prolonged life and dependable operation. 60 sage for passage closing contact with said partition and
The magnetic valve assembly is adapted to the control
toward and away from which said partition may ?ex, a
of systems in various different arrangements from that
liquid body of mercury contained within the sealed space,
here disclosed for exemplary purposes and the invention
a laterally movable permanent magnet bar bearing in the
is unlimited as to details such as come within the scope
mercury and having an end face in bearing contact with the
of appended claims.
?exible partition and spring means acting on the magnet
What is claimed is:
to bias the same toward the partition, said magnet upon
1. In a magnetic valve assembly of the character de
presentation within the ?eld thereof and adjacent its op~
scribed, a chambered casing of nonmagnetic material hav
posite end face of the magnetic wall portion of the pis
ing a ?exible diaphragm in sealing relation to one end of 70 ton, being magnetically attracted in the direction to over
the casing chamber, a body of liquid mercury entrapped
come the bias of said spring means.
within the chamber casing on one side of said diaphragm,
5. In a magnetically controlled assembly, a hollow cas
a permanent bar magnet ?oatingly suspended by said body
ing of nonmagnetic material, a movable end wall therefor
of mercury for reciprocation toward and from said dia
having sealed relation with the nonmagnetic casing, a
phragm and controlling ?exure thereof, means mounting 75 body of liquid mercury entrapped by the movable wall
3,070,344
5
within the hollow casing, a permanent bar magnet ?oat
ingly suspended in the body of mercury for reciprocation
within the casing, casing mounting means for presentation
of the ?eld of the magnet within the path of a movable
magnetic body whose presence within the ?eld attracts 5
the permanent magnet in one direction, means active to
bias said permanent magnet in the other direction, force
transmitting means between the magnet and the movable
wall to control wall movement and work regulating means
operatively related to said wall and responsive to move- 10
ment thereof.
6
References Cited in the ?le of this patent
UNITED STATES PATENTS
2,619,986
2,842,400
2,942,837
2,966,330
Bauerlein ____________ __ June 28, 1960
Binford ______________ __ Dec. 27, 1960
368,526
Germany ______________ __ Feb. 6, 1923
Goepfrich ____________ __ Dec. 2, 1952
Booth ________________ __ July 8, 1958
FOREIGN PATENTS
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