United States Steel has been granted a patent for an improved rotating control device that eliminates the need for traditional surface hydraulic power units. The device features a self-contained hydraulic reservoir that can be operated with standard air pressures, along with hydraulically operated pistons and a removable bearing assembly. The bearing assembly includes a lubricant reservoir and a rotary seal to reduce risks in the wellbore. GlobalData’s report on United States Steel gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on United States Steel, anti-corrosive metal tyre reinforcements was a key innovation area identified from patents. United States Steel's grant share as of June 2023 was 1%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Rotating control device with removable bearing assembly for wellbore

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: United States Steel Corp

A recently granted patent (Publication Number: US11686173B2) describes a rotating control device designed for the extraction of fluids from a wellbore. The device includes a spool with a bore along a longitudinal axis, a reservoir for fluid, and a latching assembly cylinder bore formed at an angle to the longitudinal axis. The latching assembly consists of a piston assembly with a sealing ring, a piston, a piston rod housing, a piston rod, and a bias element. The device also features a bearing assembly that can be removably coupled with the spool bore and has a latch surface to engage with the latching element.

The patent claims highlight various aspects of the rotating control device. Claim 2 specifies that the bias element is configured to bias the piston rod radially inward, while the reservoir can be selectively pressurized to pull the piston rod radially outward. Claim 5 states that the reservoir of the device is independent of a hydraulic power unit. Claim 7 describes the bearing assembly, which includes an outer shell, an inner guide, and a bearing. Additionally, claim 8 and claim 9 mention different configurations of a lubricant reservoir within the bearing assembly, either providing lubricant through gravity feed or pressurized feed.

The patent also includes a method for configuring the rotating control device. Claim 17 outlines the steps involved, such as pressurizing the reservoir, allowing fluid to flow to the latching assembly cylinder bore, retracting the piston, inserting the bearing assembly, and engaging the latching element with the bearing assembly. Claim 18 provides a specific method for attaching a pipe seal to the inner guide of the bearing assembly.

Overall, this patent describes a rotating control device with a unique latching assembly and bearing assembly configuration. The device offers improved functionality and ease of use in the extraction of fluids from a wellbore.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.