The Bismuth Plug Casting Process
The bismuth plug is lowered down the casing on wireline/slickline, along with the rest of the tool string.
Sensors mounted in a dedicated telemetry module help determine when the plug has reached the desired location. By measuring temperature, pressure, depth, and orientation of the plug, the plug can be placed to a high degree of accuracy.
Once in position, an electrical or pyrotechnic heating system is activated to melt the bismuth alloy.
The molten alloy flows downwards until it is caught by the base of the mandrel; the base is kept cool which causes the alloy to freeze upon contact, forming the "casting platform".
The remaining alloy fills the annular gap between the casing ID and the mandrel OD.
Once the bismuth alloy is solidified the tool string is recovered, the heater and x-over tool are left behind with the plug.
The casting process is now complete.
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