Cement is a key element for successful drilling and completing of a well. From oil and gas wells to geothermal applications, cement is a major material ensuring zonal isolation. With an increase in global energy needs and an expected uptick in drilling and plugging and abandonment activities, evaluating and understanding cement properties is crucial, since these properties are used in various engineering designs and calculations. The objective of this paper is to present how Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) can be used to understand the cement hydration process and the development of key properties such as strength and porosity. NMR applications for cement include determination of porosity, water interactions, identification of hydration stages and C-S-H gel development with curing time. Since water is present in all cement slurries, NMR can potentially help to understand microstructural changes in cement during curing. Data from more than 600 cement specimens cured for more than a year are compiled. Standard cement properties such as UCS (unconfined compressive strength) are compared with NMR responses. In this paper, we document cement hydration and porosity changes through NMR measurements in samples with five different recipes. Our study also confirms a strong correlation between NMR response and cement strength.
Hurlburt, Maurice (Athabasca Oil Corp.) | Quintero, Jonathan (Baker Hughes, a GE Company) | Bradshaw, Robert (Baker Hughes, a GE Company) | Belloso, Andres (Baker Hughes, a GE Company) | Cripps, Evan (Baker Hughes, a GE Company) | Blakney, Donya (Baker Hughes, a GE Company) | Glass, Darnell (Baker Hughes, a GE Company)
A Canadian oil & gas operator has been setting new benchmarks drilling the vertical and tangent section of Montney horizontal wells in the Placid field of Northern Alberta. Initially, the operator drilled vertical wells to kick off point (KOP) with polycrystalline diamond compacts (PDC) and conventional mud motors. As a result of increasing well density, however, the well plans consistently required a 15° to 30° tangent section. With PDC drilling, toolface and build up rates were problematic and the sliding rate of penetration (ROP) was slow.
A Rotary Steerable System (RSS) was introduced, but despite the improved performance, the technology came at a premium cost and the severity of drilling dysfunctions generated an increase in tool failures. With falling oil prices, a more cost effective solution was required.
Hybrid bit technology, which combines the cutting mechanism of both fixed cutter and roller-cone bits, has been extensively utilized in Canada to drill build sections, providing outstanding results. They have not, however, been commonly used to drill the vertical (drill-out) and tangent sections. The operator combined a state-of-the-art hybrid bit with a mud motor to drill the interval with an 85% success rate. The combination of the hybrid bit and conventional motor, compared to PDC and RSS, resulted in a 30% cost savings to complete the interval.
The present case study outlines how hybrid bit technology development, driven by field data in a continuous improvement cycle, identifies performance opportunities, which have a significant impact on drilling time and cost savings in drill out sections. The overall objective of this current case study is to highlight the results and lessons learned throughout the implementation process.
Xu, Zhengming (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Wu, Kan (Texas A&M University) | Song, Xianzhi (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Li, Gensheng (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Zhu, Zhaopeng (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Sun, Baojiang (China University of Petroleum, East China)
Energized fracturing fluids, including foams, carbon dioxide (CO2), and nitrogen (N2), are widely used for multistage fracturing in horizontal wells. However, because density, rheology, and thermal properties are sensitive to temperature and pressure, it is important to understand the flow and thermal behaviors of energized fracturing fluids along the wellbore. In this study, a unified steady-state model is developed to simulate the flow and thermal behaviors of different energized fracturing fluids and to investigate the changes of fluid properties from the wellhead to the toe of the horizontal wellbore. The velocity and pressure are calculated using continuity and momentum equations. Temperature profiles of the whole wellbore/formation system are obtained by simultaneously solving energy equations of different thermal regions. Temperature, pressure, and energized-fluid properties are coupled in both depth and radial directions using an iteration scheme. This model is verified against field data from energized-fluid-injection operations. The relative average errors for pressure and temperature are less than 5%. The effects of injection pressure, mass-flow rate, annulus-fluid type, foam quality, and proppant volumetric concentration on pressure and temperature distributions are analyzed. Influence degrees of these operating parameters on the bottomhole pressure (BHP) for different energized fracturing fluids are calculated. The required injection parameters at the surface to achieve designed bottomhole treating parameters for different energized fracturing fluids are compared. The results of this study might help field operators to select the most-suitable energized fluid and further optimize energized-fluid-fracturing treatments.
Seunghwan Baek and I. Yucel Akkutlu, Texas A&M University Summary Source rocks, such as organic-rich shale, consist of a multiscale pore structure that includes pores with sizes down to the nanoscale, contributing to the storage of hydrocarbons. In this study, we observed hydrocarbons in the source rock partition into fluids with significantly varying physical properties across the nanopore-size distribution of the organic matter. This partitioning is a consequence of the multicomponent hydrocarbon mixture stored in the nanopores, exhibiting a significant compositional variation by pore size-- the smaller the pore size, the heavier and more viscous the hydrocarbon mixture becomes. The concept of composition redistribution of the produced fluids uses an equilibrium molecular simulation that considers organic matter to be a graphite membrane in contact with a microcrack that holds bulk-phase produced fluid. A new equation of state (EOS) was proposed to predict the density of the redistributed fluid mixtures in nanopores under the initial reservoir conditions. A new volumetric method was presented to ensure the density variability across the measured pore-size distribution to improve the accuracy of predicting hydrocarbons in place. The approach allowed us to account for the bulk hydrocarbon fluids and the fluids under confinement. Multicomponent fluids with redistributed compositions are capillary condensed in nanopores at the lower end of the pore-size distribution of the matrix ( 10 nm). The nanoconfinement effects are responsible for the condensation. During production and pressure depletion, the remaining hydrocarbons become progressively heavier. Hence, hydrocarbon vaporization and desorption develop at extremely low pressures. Consequently, hydrocarbon recovery from these small pores is characteristically low. Introduction Resource shale and other source-rock formations with significant amounts of organic matter, such as mudstone, siltstone, and carbonate, have a multiscale pore structure that includes fractures, microcracks, and pores down to a few nanometers (Ambrose et al. 2012; Loucks et al. 2012). The total amount of hydrocarbons stored is directly proportional to the amount of organic matter.
For thermal heavy oil recovery, conventional steam injection processes are generally limited to reservoirs of relatively shallow depth, high permeability, thick pay zone and homogeneity. An alternative approach of applying Electromagnetic (EM) energy may be used to generate heat in reservoirs that are not suitable for steam injection or to improve the economics of the heavy oil recovery compared with steam injection. EM in-situ heating of oil reservoirs, in the form of EM energy absorption by dielectric materials, leads to an increase in temperature, a reduction in oil viscosity and an improvement in oil mobility. Recent studies have shown that EM heating is capable of reducing carbon emissions and water usage. However, the existing EM field simulators are limited to modeling of homogeneous media with respect to dielectric properties, which affects EM wave propagation and in-situ heat generation. For oil sands recovery where reservoir heating by EM energy is promising, it is desirable to simulate reservoirs in inhomogeneous formations, in which dielectric properties vary according to specific location. In this work, important background information regarding the EM wave propagation in inhomogeneous media is provided. A Helmholtz equation for the magnetic field by deformation of Maxwell's equations is presented that makes it feasible to find EM field solutions for such inhomogeneous media. Solution of only the magnetic field makes this work execution faster than the classical methods in which both magnetic and electric fields need to be calculated. By solving the equations of EM wave propagation and fluid flow in oil sands reservoirs simultaneously, this work provides a fully-implicit modelling method for the EM heating process. The feasibility of EM heating in oil sands is examined in two case studies: a) a horizontal well containing an antenna within and b) a horizontal well-pair with an antenna located in the upper well.
Cold heavy oil production with sand (CHOPS) is a non-thermal primary process that is widely adopted in many weakly consolidated heavy oil deposits around the world. However, only 5 to 15% of the initial oil in place is typically recovered. Several solvent-assisted schemes are proposed as follow-up strategies to increase the recovery factor in post-CHOPS operations. The development of complex, heterogeneous, high-permeability channels or wormholes during CHOPS renders the analysis and scalability of these processes challenging. One of the key issues is how to properly estimate the dynamic growth of wormholes during CHOPS. Existing growth models generally offer a simplified representation of the wormhole network, which, in many cases, is denoted as an extended wellbore. Despite it is commonly acknowledged that wormhole growth due to sand failure is likely to follow fractal statistics, there are no established workflows to incorporate geomechanical constraints into the construction of these fractal wormhole patterns.
A novel dynamic wormhole growth model is developed to generate a set of realistic fractal wormhole networks during the CHOPS operations. It offers an improvement to the Diffusion Limited Aggregation (DLA) algorithm with a sand-arch-stability criterion. The outcome is a fractal pattern that mimics a realistic wormhole growth path, with sand failure and fluidization being controlled by geomechanical constraints. The fractal pattern is updated dynamically by coupling compositional flow simulation on a locally-refined grid and a stability criterion for the sand arch: the wormhole would continue expanding following the fractal pattern, provided that the pressure gradient at the tip exceeds the limit corresponding to a sand-arch-stability criterion. Important transport mechanisms including foamy oil (non-equilibrium dissolution of gas) and sand failure are integrated.
Public field data for several CHOPS fields in Canada is used to examine the results of the dynamic wormhole growth model and flow simulations. For example, sand production history is used to estimate a practical range for the critical pressure gradient representative of the sand-arch-stability criterion. The oil and sand production histories show good agreement with the modeling results.
In many CHOPS or post-CHOPS modeling studies, constant wormhole intensity is commonly assigned uniformly throughout the entire domain; as a result, the ensuing models are unlikely to capture the complex heterogeneous distribution of wormholes encountered in realistic reservoir settings. This work, however, proposes a novel model to integrate a set of statistical fractal patterns with realistic geomechanical constraints. The entire workflow has been readily integrated with commercial reservoir simulators, enabling it to be incorporated in practical field-scale operations design.
Raney, Kirk (Locus Bio-Energy Solutions, LLC) | Alibek, Ken (Locus Bio-Energy Solutions, LLC) | Shumway, Martin (Locus Bio-Energy Solutions, LLC) | Karathur, Karthik (Locus Bio-Energy Solutions, LLC) | Stanislav, Terry (Locus Bio-Energy Solutions, LLC) | West, Gary (Locus Bio-Energy Solutions, LLC) | Jacobs, Marc (Penneco Oil Company)
New biochemically-derived products for the removal of paraffin wax from oil wells do not require additional capex nor heat and do not utilize bacteria. They contain inactivated microbial cells, biosurfactants and biosolvents, and other components harvested as microbial byproducts that emulsify and dissolve paraffin from rock pores and from the well surfaces over wide temperature, salinity, depth, and pH ranges. Additionally, they increase oil recovery by remediating near-wellbore formation damage, reducing interfacial tension, altering rock surfaces and changing their wettability, and reducing oil viscosity. The product application is environmentally superior to well treatments using hot oil/water and aromatic solvents and is economical due to low capital and operating costs required for product synthesis. Specifically, product preparation is achieved using a modular fermentation system that is installed near the points of application. This insures highly efficient and low-cost production and logistics, as well as reducing time from generation to application which maximizes potency. With sufficient space, water, and electricity, the initial manufacture of the dispersal products can occur within a few weeks.
The treatment products utilized were initially developed and tested in laboratory studies, which showed that dispersion rates of the relevant paraffin samples were comparable to those achieved with toluene. The paraffin dispersal products exhibit a very high level of efficacy and safety when deployed in the Appalachian and Permian Basins. The potency of these products has led to outstanding paraffin removal results as indicated by reduced well failures in both vertical and horizontal wells and by visual observation of sucker rods removed from the wells. In addition, tank sludge and wax deposits in pipelines can be removed through either residual product flowing from the well or through direct application. Growth of detrimental bacteria and formation of biofilms are inhibited by the product application thereby reducing corrosion risk.
Specifically, details of an almost two-year 70-well study in the Appalachian Basin are reported in which no well failures were observed due to paraffin buildup and 95% of the wells exhibited an enhanced oil recovery effect during the paraffin remediation treatments. This resulted in an approximate 50% average increase in sustained production rate over baseline. Analysis of the results forecasts a substantial increase in future production, thereby significantly enhancing the value of the producing wells. Importantly, longer times between required treatments and the increased recovery rates have transformed the paraffin maintenance program into a documented revenue generator for the operator.
Bashir, Yasir (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS) | Babasafari, Amir Abbas (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS) | Biswas, Ajay (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS) | Hamidi, Rositi (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS) | Moussavi Alashloo, Seyed Yaser (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS) | Tariq Janjuah, Hammad (American University of Beirut) | Prasad Ghosh, Deva (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS) | Weng Sum, Chow (Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS)
A majority of remaining proven Oil & Gas reserves is contained by Carbonate reservoir, and much more complicated to explore as imaging of the Carbonate rocks is poor. In case of Carbonate data, seismic diffraction imaging has contributed to an enhancement in the quality of seismic but there is still lack of understanding the lithology and impedance contrast which can be defined by the seismic inversion. In contrast, to the conventional process, an integration of seismic inversion methods are necessary to understand the lithology and include the full band of frequency in our initial model to incorporate and detail study about the basin for prospect evaluation. In this paper, an integrated approch is developed for better deleniation of subsurface structure and lithologies. Seismic post stack inversion technique is applied to the Carbonate field to study Electroficies and lithofacies of subsurface strata for better and detail study of the reservoir.
Oil migration system is assessed by mathematical modelling analysis of carbazole distributions among five oil fields spread over 15,000 km2. Mathematical modeling results show that: 1) concentrations of carbazoles in reservoir oils is inversely related to the ratio of relative migration distance over the volume of oil-in-place, 2) derived equivalent cross-sectional areas for the migration channels are in the range of 1000 – 1500 m2 (mean of 1200 m2) which is equivalent to a half circular channel of 51 – 62 m in diameter (mean 55 m), and 3) the volume of oil left in the migration channels could be significant.
Cao, Jinrong (The University of Tokyo) | Liang, Yunfeng (The University of Tokyo) | Masuda, Yoshihiro (The University of Tokyo) | Koga, Hiroaki (Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation) | Tanaka, Hiroyuki (Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation) | Tamura, Kohei (Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation) | Takagi, Sunao (Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation) | Matsuoka, Toshifumi (Fukada Geological Institute)
In this paper, we present an improved method to predict the methane adsorption isotherm for a real shale sample using molecular dynamics (MD) simulation with a realistic kerogen model. We compare our simulation results both to the experiment and to the simulation results on the basis of a simple graphite model, and show how our procedure leads to the creation of more accurate adsorption isotherms of a shale sample at a wide range of pressure. A Marcellus shale sample was chosen as an example to demonstrate how to calculate the adsorption isotherms using MD simulations. Type II kerogen molecular model was selected for the dry gas window. The constructed bulk kerogen model contains mesopores (> 2 nm) and micropores (≤ 2 nm) inside. Ten different mesopore sizes of kerogen nanopore systems were constructed. According to the characteristics of methane density distribution in the simulation system, three regions can be clearly distinguished, free gas, adsorbed gas, and absorbed gas. We show that the adsorbed gas per unit pore volume increases with the pore size decreased. This is similar to previous molecular simulations with graphite model. For predicting the total adsorption isotherm of a real shale sample, both adsorbed and absorbed gas were considered. For the adsorption amount, the calculated adsorption isotherms were averaged based on pore size distribution of that Marcellus Shale sample. For nanopores smaller than 5 nm, we used total organic carbon (TOC) data to weight the absorption contribution in the kerogen bulk (i.e. inside the micropores). The total adsorption isotherm thus obtained from our simulations reproduced experiments very well. Importantly, kerogen model has overcome the difficulties of prediction using graphite models (i.e. an underestimation of adsorption under high pressure conditions) as documented in previous studies. Furthermore, we predicted the adsorption isotherms for higher temperatures. With the temperature increased, lower adsorption amount is predicted. The novelty of our improved method is that it is able to predict methane adsorption isotherm at a wide range of pressure for a shale sample by considering both adsorption in kerogen mesopores and absorption in kerogen bulk. It can be readily used for any shale sample, where the pore size distribution, porosity, and TOC are known. We remark that the above results and conclusion resulted from our simple assumption. Further discussion might be necessary.