The rheological properties and friction pressure losses of several fluids that are most commonly used as well drilling, completion, and stimulation fluids have been investigated experimentally. These fluids include polymeric fluids – Xanthan gum, partially hydrolyzed polyacrylamide (PHPA), guar gum, and hydroxyethyl cellulose (HEC), bentonite drilling mud, oil-based drilling mud, and guar-based fracturing slurries. Rheological measurements using a Bohlin CS 50 rheometer and a model 35 Fann viscometer showed that these fluids exhibit shear thinning and thermal thinning behavior except the bentonite drilling mud whose viscosity increased as the temperature was raised. Flow experiments using a full-scale coiled tubing test facility showed that the friction pressure loss in coiled tubing is significantly higher than in straight tubing. Since the polymeric fluids displayed drag reducing property, their drag reduction behavior in straight and coiled tubings was analyzed and compared. It was found that the drag reduction (DR) in coiled tubing is much lower than that in straight tubing. Plots of drag reduction vs. generalized Reynolds number indicate that the drag reduction in coiled tubing was not affected by polymer concentration as much as in straight tubing. The onsets of turbulence and drag reduction in coiled tubing were significantly delayed as compared with straight tubing. The effect of solids content on the friction pressure losses in coiled tubing is also briefly discussed.

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