Gilsonite is a naturally occurring hydrocarbon. It is mined and ground to the desired particle size. Gilsonite is used in drilling mud fluids and oil well cementing. Gilsonite, in a range of softening points and particle sizes, is a standard ingredient in oil-based drilling muds used in shales and other difficult geological formations.
The addition of specially-treated Gilsonite to water-based drilling fluids helps minimize hole washout by stabilizing troublesome shales, and seals off highly permeable sands while reducing torque and drag.
The addition of Gilsonite to oil well cements reduces slurry weight without loss of compressive strength and acts as an effective bridging and plugging agent to seal fractures in weak formations while cementing.
When mixed with organophilic clays, Gilsonite’s particular grind size and softening point are ideal for reducing whole mud losses to the formation.