DataCan icon

Downhole Quartz Gauge Overview

posted on 15 January 2019 9:45 PM by James Wright ( CEO )

Quartz Sensor Size
Quartz sensors are made from quartz crystals. Specifically, in DataCan gauges, there is a quartz disc placed between two quartz drums. The disc vibrates like a drum skin in response to changes in pressure and temperature which results in a change in the quartz disc’s natural frequency.
Quartz Sensor Temperature
If you need a high temperature solution, you need quartz. Piezo sensors tend to drift at temperatures above 150 °C (the diffusion layer in the silicon die begins to leak resistance). Quartz tools will operate to temperatures around 200 °C, and the data will remain stable.
Quartz Sensor Resolution
The transducer in DataCan's Quartz tools average 10,000 measurements every second resulting in higher resolution data that gives a clearer picture of what is happening in your specific well. It is 100 times more resolution than a piezo tool (0.00006% vs 0.0003% Full Scale).

  • Downhole pressure and temperature measurement
  • Pressure up to 30,000 psi maximum
  • Accuracy of up to +/- 0.020% full scale
  • Resolution of 0.00006% full scale
  • Temperature up to 200 °C maximum
  • Accuracy of +/-0.25 °C
  • Resolution 0.005 °C
  • 2 million data sets of memory
  • 1 second to once a day sampling

Quartz tools are more stable and have less drift than a Piezo tool. Typically you can go 2 years or more between  calibrations with a quartz tool. Quartz tools are preferred for long term high temperature jobs.

All of DataCan’s quartz tools use hybrid oscillating circuits. Hybrid circuits are 100 times more reliable than standard surface mount (soldered) electronics.


Oscillating Circuit

Hybrids, like the one above, have no plastic parts. The raw die is mounted onto a ceramic substrate. The resulting structure is much smaller, and will work reliably to higher temperatures (up to 225°C).

A modular memory cartage means that DataCan’s quartz tools can be upgraded in the field. At any time, a DataCan customer can change the memory module out for a surface readout module.


Quartz Memory Module
DataCan Quartz tools have significant advantages over the competition. DataCan’s quartz design maximizes the thermal response of the quartz sensor. The picture below shows the caged bullnose that DataCan uses to expose the pressure (green) and temperature (red) crystals to the wellbore.
Quartz Sensor

DataCan’s mechanical package uses electron beam welding to reduce leak paths. DataCan has one tool joint, the competitions’ tools have up to three. As well as reducing the number of potential leak paths, DataCan has improved their seal joint. A common seal failure is extrusion. DataCan’s seal design uses a metal to metal beveled seal to eliminate the extrusion gap.