Patent application title: Packer Bridge Plug with Slips
Michael Sommers (Broken Arrow, OK, US)
TARGET COMPLETIONS, LLC
IPC8 Class: AE21B33129FI
Class name: Packers or plugs with expanding anchor flow stopping type, e.g., plug
Publication date: 2016-02-04
Patent application number: 20160032682
The present invention is to a packer plug that can be tripped into a
particular location in a well bore and set using slips rings and packer
elements. The plug presents little flow resistance because of its wide
inner diameter throat through the mandrel. A ball seat at an upper end
allows for the sealing of the interior passage. The ball can be flowed
upward or dissolved to remove the seal and allow flow through the plug. A
slip ring can be used in place of slips to reduce the overall length of
the packer plug.
1. A bridge plug for sealing a well bore comprising: a mandrel having a
tubular body and a collet; a ball seat at an upper end for receiving a
ball to seal flow through the mandrel body; a packer element mounted to
the mandrel for selectively sealing flow outside the mandrel body; an
upper conical body slidably mounted on the mandrel and a lower conical
body mounted on the mandrel; at least one slip ring mounted between the
upper conical body and lower sub causing the slip to expand away the
mandrel when the slip slides over the upper conical body.
2. The bridge plug of claim 1 wherein the slip ring is a narrow band of material having a precut section to allow the band to expand radially.
3. The bridge plug of claim 1 wherein the slip ring is a narrow band of material having an expandable section to allow the band to expand radially.
4. The bridge plug of claim 1 wherein the slip ring is a C shaped hoop of material having frictional elements mounted about an outer circumference of the hoop.
5. The bridge plug of claim 1 wherein the slip ring is a C shaped hoop of material having frictional elements mounted about an outer circumference of the hoop, wherein the frictional elements are made of carbide.
CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
 This application is a continuation in part of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 14/552,142, filed Nov. 24, 2014, which claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application 61/907,447, filed Nov. 22, 2013, entitled "Packer Bridge Plug with Slips," which is incorporated herein by reference. This application also claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application 62/051,694, filed Sep. 17, 2014, entitled "Improved Packer Bridge Plug with Slips," which is incorporated herein by reference.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
Field of the Invention
 The present invention relates to a bridge plug packer having a ball seat and packer element for sealing one zone of a well from another.
 In the process of fracking, it is expensive to run tools into and out of the well. It is therefore desirable to run in tools that can serve multiple purposes during the fracking process. The present invention in at least one embodiment is to a packer tool that can be used to seal a well bore and when the ball is removed presents only a small resistance to the production flow up through the plug.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 Accordingly, it is a principal object of a preferred embodiment of the invention to provide a packer plug that can be tripped into a particular location in a well bore and set using slips or expansion rings and packer elements. The plug presents little flow resistance because of its wide inner diameter throat through the mandrel. A ball seat at an upper end allows for the sealing of the interior passage. The ball can be flowed upward or dissolved to remove the seal and allow flow through the plug.
 It is another object of the invention to provide a selectively sealable down hole tool that can be sealed and unsealed during the facking process without having to trip the entire tool back up the well bore.
 It is a further object of the invention to a bridge plug for use with a removable ball or with a dissolvable ball to allow production flow through the tool without requiring removal of the tool.
 Still another object of the invention is to provide a down hole tool that can be set with a setting tool to set one or more bridge plugs in series to isolate a number of zones in a well bore which can be selectively unsealed to allow production flow through the tool.
 It is a further object of the invention to a bridge plug for use having a slip ring instead of slips to lock the packer in place in a well bore.
 It is an object of the invention to provide improved elements and arrangements thereof in an apparatus for the purposes described which is inexpensive, dependable and fully effective in accomplishing its intended purposes.
 These and other objects of the present invention will be readily apparent upon review of the following detailed description of the invention and the accompanying drawings. These objects of the present invention are not exhaustive and are not to be construed as limiting the scope of the claimed invention. Further, it must be understood that no one embodiment of the present invention need include all of the aforementioned objects of the present invention. Rather, a given embodiment may include one or none of the aforementioned objects. Accordingly, these objects are not to be used to limit the scope of the claims of the present invention.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 FIG. 1 is cross-sectional view of a bridge plug packer according to at least one embodiment of the invention.
 FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the bridge plug according to the embodiment of FIG. 1.
 FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of a setting tool and bridge plug for running into a well bore.
 FIG. 3B is a cross-sectional view of a setting tool and bridge plug for running into a well bore in the setting mode.
 FIG. 4 is a front plan view of a bridge plug according to a further embodiment of the invention.
 FIG. 5 is cross-sectional view of a bridge plug packer according to a further embodiment of the invention.
 FIG. 6 is a front plan view of a bridge plug shown partially disassembled.
 Similar reference characters denote corresponding features consistently throughout the attached drawings.
 The present invention relates to a bridge plug packer having slips.
 A bridge plug is used to isolate a zone below the plug. It is desirable to make a bridge plug that can be reversed by simply flowing fluid up from beneath the plug. The current inventions shows one such plug 10 in the Figures.
 FIG. 1 shows a bridge plug 10. The plug has a central body 12 terminating in a collet 14. The bridge plug 10 has a set of slips 16 on the bottom end of the packer that when set keep the frac plug 10 in place. The rubber element/packer 18 is contained between the expansion rings 20 on the top and the expansion rings 22 above the cone on the bottom. The expansion rings may have a cut section to allow the rings to contract and expand. A rubber retainer ring 24 may be provided on either side of the packer to retain the packer in position on the plug 10. As the expansion rings are compressed towards each other the rubber packer 18 expands outwardly to lock the plug in place and isolates the zone upstream of the plug from the downstream zone.
 The slips 16 are located between an upper cone 26 and a lower cone 28. Upper cone 28 has locknut 30 and lower cone 28 includes a locknut 32. These locknut cooperate with threading/ridges 34 on the mandrel/central body 12 to selectively locate the cones at a particular axial location along the mandrel to for example, retain the slips in a deployed status. Preferably the mandrel 12 includes threads 34 that allow the lower locknut 32 to be threaded into position, but the threads also cooperate with the lockring to act as a ratchet so that the mandrel can move downwardly past the lockring when the setting tool strokes or when a downward force acts on the mandrel body to further set the slips 16.
 A number of shear pins 36 (FIG. 2) are provided to lock the upper and lower cones relative to the mandrel before setting. As described lower under, when the pins shear under downward pressure from the mandrel, the cones compress the slip, forcing the slip outward to engage the well bore (not shown). The pressure required to shear the pins may vary according to the application, but are preferably set to shear during the stroking of the setting tool.
 In operation, the plug is run in the well with wireline pump down, tractor or tubing (not shown). The plug is set with a special setting kit 50 (FIGS. 3 & 3B) that attaches to the bottom section of the Packer plug by a setting collet 52. The setting collet is arranged such that the setting collet arms fall within the voids between the main mandrel 12 collet arms. The ends of the setting collet arms extend outwardly to engage with the lower cone. The setting mandrel 50 body prevents the setting collet arms from moving inward. A shear ring 54 is provided to release the setting kit mandrel body at the appropriate time. When the setting mandrel body is removed, the setting collet 52 arms can move inwardly to release the kit from the bridge plug 10. The setting mandrel body has a limited "lost motion" where the setting mandrel body can move relative to the setting collet before the mandrel body hits a shoulder 56 of the collet. When the setting mandrel body is thus positioned, the collet arms can retract. Further movement of the setting mandrel body upward causes a shoulder of the setting mandrel body 50 to force the setting collet body upward with the setting mandrel body so that the setting kit can be removed from the bridge plug entirely. A cap (not shown) may be provided at the terminus of the setting mandrel body to keep the sheer ring from falling off entirely from the setting kit.
 FIG. 3 shows a setting gun 48 inside a setting sleeve attached to the bridge plug by the setting kit and ready for insertion into a well bore. The setting gun is connected to the setting kit mandrel by adapter sleeve 62, which is attached to the bridge plug by collet 52 which is held in place by shear ring 54.
 When setting, the tools are tripped into a well bore to a desired location. The slips are partially set as the tool is tripped in to provide some resistance. This resistance causes the packer elements to partially set. The setting tool then strokes and the bridge plug mandrel moves downward relative to the cones setting the slips, compressing the packer element and expanding the rubber expansion rings while the shear pins on the cones shear allowing the mandrel to move relative to the cones. The locknuts 30,32 ratchet along the threads 34 and are locked in place against returning to their pre-setting position by the threads 34 in a one-way ratchet. When the force reaches a sufficient pressure to shear the shear pins on the setting mandrel, the pin(s) shear on the lock ring and the setting collets on the bottom of the setting kit collapse allowing the setting kit to be released from the Packer Plug. The shear ring collects at a lower portion of the shear kit so that it can be retrieved with the tool. The setting tool is the tripped up leaving the bridge plug set in place. Because the bridge plug is hollow, fluid can still flow unobstructed through the well bore. The cylindrical shape of the tool allows for the flow to bridge plug to only have a minor impact on flow through the well bore.
 The next operation is to isolate the zones below the plug by pumping a ball on to the top of the Packer Plug. A ball 70 is pumped down from surface and lands on the top of the Packer Plug blocking flow through the interior of the bridge plug as the packer element blocks flow around the bridge plug. The additional feature of the ball landing on the top of the Packer plug is that this pushes additional force on the mandrel though the lock nut and down to the low slips. This force energizes the element more and puts more energy into the slips of the Packer tool.
 The final operation is the flow back and production. With the mandrel being a large cast iron Mandrel, the fluids and gasses in the well will not break down the tool like a composite plug. Because the Bottom of the Packer mandrel has a collet style design with arms having ample voids between the arms, the well fluids will flow around any ball that comes in contact with the bottom of the Packer mandrel and will flow through the voids in the collet and through the interior of the bridge plug.
 FIGS. 4-6 show a further embodiment of the invention having expansion rings ("slip rings") instead of slips. The arrangement of this embodiment allows for a simplified design and a reduced overall length of the tool.
 The tool 110 has a central mandrel 112 having a packer element 118 mounted thereon. The mandrel includes a ball seat 113 for the ball 170 to seal the inner passageway through the mandrel. The lower end of mandrel body includes collet fingers 114 for attaching additional elements to the mandrel. A frustoconical ring 125 takes the place of upper cone 26. The lower cone 128 has a conical surface to enclosed a number of slip rings 115 between the lower cone and the 26 and to force the expansion rings to expand when compressed between the lower cone and the ring 125. The slip rings 115 may have a weakened area or cut through to allow the rings to expand when compressed between the conical surfaces like a C clip. The expansion ring may have additional friction elements 117 to provide a secure bite between the bridge plug and the well casing when it is desired to set the plug in place. The frictional elements could be made of carbide or may be wickers similar to the slip design of the first embodiment. Other materials including metals and ceramics could be used for the construction of the frictional elements 117 depending on the application. For the purposes of this patent, a "slip ring" shall mean a circular band or hoop of material mounted on a bridge plug that can expand radially for the purpose of frictionally engaging a surrounding casing of a well bore or the like to fix the bridge relative to the casing, wherein the slip ring is expandable or has a cut to allow the slip ring to expand its effective radius.
 In practice, the lower cone is threaded onto the mandrel body and shear pinned into place. A setting tool similar to FIG. 3 is used to bottom set the bridge plug in place. During setting, the lower cone shears the pin 129 and moves upwardly along the mandrel body to compress the slip rings between the cone of the lower cone 128 and the ring 125 forcing the slip rings outward. The slip rings engage the inner wall of the casing as they expand forcing the slip rings and/or the frictional elements 117 into frictional engagement with the casing to affix the bridge plug into place. Further compression expands the packer element 118 outward to prevent any flow around the outside of the bridge plug. A ball 170 is then dropped into place to selectively seal the bridge plug. If required, the ball can be dissolved or removed to reopen the flow through the tool to allow production or other flow therethrough without requiring the removal of the tool.
 While this invention has been described as having a preferred design, it is understood that it is capable of further modifications, uses and/or adaptations of the invention following in general the principle of the invention and including such departures from the present disclosure as come within the known or customary practice in the art to which the invention pertains and as maybe applied to the central features hereinbefore set forth, and fall within the scope of the invention and the limits of the appended claims. It is therefore to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the sole embodiment described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.
Patent applications by Michael Sommers, Broken Arrow, OK US
Patent applications in class Flow stopping type, e.g., plug
Patent applications in all subclasses Flow stopping type, e.g., plug