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microannulus

1. n. [Well Completions]

A small gap that can form between the casing or liner and the surrounding cement sheath, most commonly formed by variations in temperature or pressure during or after the cementing process. Such variations cause small movement of the steel casing, breaking the cement bond and creating a microannulus that is typically partial. However, in severe cases the microannulus may encircle the entire casing circumference. A microannulus can jeopardize the hydraulic efficiency of a primary cementing operation, allowing communication between zones if it is severe and connected.

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