The Open Petroleum Engineering Journal


ISSN: 1874-8341 ― Volume 12, 2019

Evaluating the Effects of Monovalent and Divalent Salts on the Rheological Properties of Water Based Mud

Ohenewaa K. Dankwa1, *, Prince Opoku Appau2, Eric Broni-Bediako1
1 Department of Petroleum Engineering, University of Mines and Technology, Tarkwa, Ghana
2 Research Institute of Enhanced Oil Recovery, China University of Petroleum Beijing, P.R. China



Drilling fluid selection plays a key role in preventing major problems encountered during drilling operations such as hole pack-off, stuck pipe and loss circulation. Mud contamination which results from the overtreatment of the mud system with additives or foreign material entering the mud system during drilling operations causes unwanted changes in the properties of the mud. This makes the mud system inefficient in performing its major roles. This research studies the effects of monovalent and divalent salts namely Potassium Chloride, Calcium Chloride, and Magnesium Chloride on the rheological properties of water-based mud system which is most vulnerable to contamination.


Sixteen mud samples were formulated of which fifteen were contaminated each with different concentrations (0.75 g, 1.50 g, 2.50 g, 3.50 g, and 5.0 g) of the various salts at ambient temperature.


The results showed that the rheological properties such as plastic viscosity, apparent viscosity and yield point of the mud samples decreased as the concentrations of various salts increase.


It was concluded that increase in the concentration of the salts resulted in a decrease in the rheological properties of the mud samples. This indicates that with the monovalent and divalent salt contamination, there is a significant decline in the performance of drilling mud since the salts affect the dispersion, hydration and flocculation behaviour of the particles. The effect was more profound with CaCl2 and MgCl2 salts than the KCl salt.

Keywords: Contaminants, Drilling fluid rheology, Monovalent and Divalent salts, Viscosity, Water based mud, Drilling fluids.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2018
Volume: 11
First Page: 98
Last Page: 106
Publisher Id: TOPEJ-11-98
DOI: 10.2174/1874834101811010098

Article History:

Received Date: 15/1/2018
Revision Received Date: 15/5/2018
Acceptance Date: 11/9/2018
Electronic publication date: 18/10/2018
Collection year: 2018

© 2018 Dankwa et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this authors at the Department of Petroleum Engineering, University of Mines and Technology, Tarkwa, Ghana, E-mail: odankwa@umat-edu-gh

Track Your Manuscript:


"I have to express my sincere appreciation for your hard and professional work. Thank you very much!"

Si Zhang
Institute for Strength and Vibration of Mechanical Structures,
Yangtze University, Jingzhou,
Hubei Province,

"My experiences in publishing a paper with Bentham Open is good. I must say that the speed of publication in The Open Petroleum Engineering Journal is very fast. It takes only two month for the pioneer reviewing process. The delay was caused by me. And what’s more, the publisher’s office is quite helpful. I guess they are dealing with thousands emails every week, but they process my request in a very short period of time."

Xin Ma
School of Science, Southwest Petroleum University, Chengdu, China

Browse Contents

Webmaster Contact:
Copyright © 2023 Bentham Open