Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about wel-lok™ technology.

BiSN Awarded Large P&A Contract in the North SeaBiSN Awarded Large P&A Contract in the North Sea
What is wel-lok™ technology?

Performance Barrier Technologies from BiSN utilize new sealing alloys — enabling precise placement of a high endurance gas-tight seal.

As the foundation of our multi-award-winning wel-lok™ systems, the BiSN technology platform brings efficiency, simplicity and sustainability to our suite of tools, and comprises:

  • Engineered alloys that flow like water to fill downhole leak paths without pumping
  • Enclosed thermite element delivering controlled heat for precision melting and solidification in minutes
  • Range of conveyance options offering deployment flexibility without specialized surface equipment
What are the benefits of using wel-lok™ technology?

With a carefully cultivated mixture of alloys, we create a fast and precise sealing method that’s non-corrosive, better for the environment, and expands on solidification, creating a gas-tight seal.

  • Viscosity of Water
  • Dense – SG-10
  • Corrosion Resistant
  • Expands like Ice

New alloys create the ultimate barrier: one that won’t shrink, develop channels or crumble away over time. A seamless material with the non-porous structure of solid metal that’s unaffected by temperature, pressure or aggressive fluids. And once it seals, it stays. Forever.

What makes a bismuth alloy so effective for plugging wells?

The bismuth alloy created by BiSN engineers and used in wel-lok™ technology applications has two unique properties that ensure it creates a solid plug:

  • When melted it flows like water but with a higher density, meaning it can flow into microannuli in cement, while dispersing other fluids such as water.
  • When the alloy solidifies, it expands, creating a V0 gas tight seal in the well.

Combined with the wel-lok™ technology developed to deploy the bismuth alloy, operators are learning quickly that this permanent and safe sealing technology can be a cost-effective solution throughout the life cycle of a well.

Bismuth alloys are often used as materials for plugging wells due to their unique physical properties. Bismuth is a heavy metal with a low melting point of 271.4°C, which means it can be easily melted and poured into the wellbore. When bismuth is combined with other metals, such as lead, tin, and cadmium, it forms alloys that have a lower melting point than bismuth alone, which makes them easier to handle and use.

Bismuth alloys developed by BiSN also have a low toxicity and are environmentally friendly, which is important when working with materials that will be placed in the ground. When a bismuth alloy is poured into a well, it solidifies quickly and expands slightly as it cools, which helps to seal off the wellbore and prevent any fluids or gases from escaping. This happens far quicker than traditional methods including cement.

Overall, the unique combination of properties of bismuth alloys, including low melting point, ease of use, low toxicity, and ability to solidify and expand upon cooling, make them highly effective for plugging wells.

Where has BiSN had successful deployments?

BiSN has been active globally with deployments in the following regions:

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia
  • Africa
  • Australia
  • South America
Where do BiSN have regional business development offices?

BiSN currently has offices in following locations:

Does BiSN just do plug and abandonment work?

Although plug and abandonment is one of our applications, BiSN wel-lok™ technology can also be used throughout the life cycle of any given well. With tools designed for a variety of applications including water shut off, sand control, packer repair and others, wel-lok™ technology is used by operators around the globe to solve complex downhole issues safer and forever.

Does BiSN do water shut off in wells?

BiSN’s wel-lok™ Water Shut Off (WSO) tool is specifically designed to reduce unwanted water production and increase profitability. Unlike traditional methods, wel-lok™ technology provides complete isolation across the wellbore. Bridge plugs, for example, only isolate inside the completion allowing water to be produced up the annulus. BiSN provides a permanent isolation in a single trip as opposed to other chemical treatments, some of which require multiple applications a year to maintain their effectiveness. The application of wel-lok™ technology can save operators significant cost while increasing production and, therefore, profitability. Learn more about the wel-lok™ WSO application.

Can wel-lok™ technology be used to seal horizontal wells?

Currently wel-lok™ technology can only be used in vertically-drilled wells even with substantial deviation. The BiSN engineering team is currently in the research and development phase of an application that would be appropriate for horizontal wells. If you would like to hear more information on this exciting development work, contact a member of the business development team at [email protected].

How long does a wel-lok™ plug last?

wel-lok™ technology has been designed to permanently seal wells. Through computer modeling, BiSN wel-lok™ plugs have been theoretically shown to last for 3000 years, giving operators peace of mind that they have chosen a safe technology that will protect the environment in the long term.

How do I contact a BiSN expert to discuss if wel-lok™ technology is right for my well?

BiSN has several regional offices, however you may contact a representative from the business development team by emailing [email protected], or submitting the form at the bottom of this page.

Get in touch to find a permanent sealing solution for your well

Businesses worldwide are benefitting from BiSN's well services in the field. Contact us today and embrace tomorrow's engineered sealing solution, today.

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email
This is a required field
There has been an error. Please try again.
There has been an error. Please try again.
This is a required field

Don’t miss out on the latest technical updates and advancements. Subscribe today.

Please enter a valid email address.

Our website uses analytics, marketing and preference cookies to both provide the most relevant experience for our users and to give us information about how our site is used. By clicking “Accept All”, you consent to the use of these cookies.

Accept All Cookies