Q: Is the Mud Watcher Ex rated?
The Mud Watcher is designed as a ATEX/Ex rated system that can be placed in areas requiring explosion proof certification. To achieve this, moving parts in the system are driven by compressed air, and the electronics are used only for data acquisition and external data transfer. To achieve the ATEX/Ex certification, the internal displays and external data transfer use analog signals only.
Q: What is the accuracy of the data?
Compared to the current mud balance and Marsh Funnel, the Mud Watcher is very accurate. However, where the Mud Watcher really excels is providing repeatable, consistent, and continuous trend data without human the human factor (inadvertent errors, measurement inaccuracies, safety, etc.). As drilling mud properties change during drilling, the Mud Watcher is able to capture this change as a relative trending tool. When an exception is observed, such as a spike in density or viscosity, additional testing can be triggered.
Q: Can the data be transferred to external drives?
Yes. The unit outputs temperature, density, and viscosity via three distinct analogue 4-20 mA connections. The Mud Watcher 4-20 mA external interface can be connected to a typical DAQ system. The data transfer rate is dependent on the user / application. No special software is necessary. Data integration would depend on the available control and instrumentation system infrastructure available at the rig.
Q: What type of display is available at the rig site?
The current unit has two large displays for density and viscosity (data is available for DAQ integration). The other controls are done with pneumatic control (of the compressed air) or with “bias” adjustment knobs for density and viscosity values.