Melilo Junior, Angelo Celio (Petrobras) | Oliveira da Costa, Carlos Henrique (Petrobras) | Armani Delalibera, Carlos Alberto (Petrobras) | Schwingel Dias, Marco Antônio (Petrobras) | Palmeira de Oliveira, Thomaz Murrieta (Petrobras) | Pereira, Rafael Merenda (Petrobras)
The Libra Extend Well Test (EWT) project is composed of 2 satellite wells interconnected to an FPSO with an external Turret anchor. One well is the producer, with 6-inch service lines and 8-inch production line in lazy wave risers configuration. The other well is the injector, with two 6-inch gas flow lines also in lazy wave compliant configuration. In the project planning several actions were considered in order to guarantee the first oil date determined by the project, while the production unit (FPSO) was not available in the location and ready to pull-in campaign. One of these actions studied and later adopted was the prelaying operation of the flexible lines with floaters in the lazy wave configuration of the production line of the production well. Later on, similar studies were done considering the pre-laying of injection lines also. As this type of operation is not a track records at Petrobras for the ultra-deep water scenario, additional studies were necessary to ensure its feasibility and the safety execution. The objective of this article is to present the previous studies and the result achieved in the pre-laying operation of flexible line with floaters in the lazy wave configuration of the Libra EWT service line.
Shale plays are anisotropic in terms of their reservoir quality which gets reflected in their productivity. Reservoir qualities like organic richness, thermal maturity, hydrocarbon saturation, the volume of clay, brittleness and pressure affect the productivity of the shale plays. In general, the volume of clay has a negative relationship whereas other parameters listed above have a positive relationship with production. In our study area, we found the deepest wells despite having better rock quality; do not perform like nearby shallower wells. The objective of this study is to understand the not so obvious reason behind underperformance of these deepest wells.
Since the wells are located at a deeper depth and the reservoir temperature is high (90 to 135°C), so we studied the area from clay diagenesis and fluid expansion perspective. We have reviewed the imprints of clay diagenesis with the help of XRD data and core integrated multi min processed wireline logs. We observed an increasing trend of illite, chlorite towards the deeper part of the reservoir along with a decreasing trend of smectite in the same direction which indicates a higher degree of clay diagenesis. Fluid expansion study is carried out with the help of total organic carbon and hydrocarbon saturation. This study indicated a higher degree of fluid expansion (TOC to hydrocarbon generation) in the deepest part.
Subsequently, 1D pore pressure, stress and rock mechanical modeling is carried out to evaluate the effect of a higher degree of diagenesis and fluid expansion on geomechanical parameters (pore pressure, stress and brittleness). 1D modeling reveals that the deeper wells have abnormal pressure, stress and low brittleness, which is primarily due to extra pressure contribution from fluid expansion and clay diagenesis apart from the compaction disequilibrium process. This abnormal stress and reduction in brittlness likely to have created challenges for the applied hydrofrac job in the deepest part resulting to narrow frac geometry. Comparison of hydraulic fracture modeling between a shallow and the deepest wells reveal that the hydraulic fracture geometry in the deepest well is narrower than the shallower well. So we came to the conclusion that the deepest wells are underperforming than the shallower wells despite of their better rock quality due to ineffective fracturing and comparatively narrower fracture geometry.
The impact of clay diagenesis and fluid expansion in shale productivity has not been studied widely. Though many authors have extensively studied the impact of clay diagenesis on permeability and pore pressure, the integration of shale well production is rarely attempted. This work will help the operators to better analyze and understand their shale reservoir from clay diagenesis and fluid expansion point of view before planning the hydrofrac jobs.
Yang, Zhaopeng (PetroChina Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration&Development) | Li, Xingmin (PetroChina Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration&Development) | Chen, Heping (PetroChina Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration&Development) | Ramachandran, Hariharan (The University of Texas at Austin, Hildebrand Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering) | Shen, Yang (PetroChina Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration&Development) | Yang, Heng (China National Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Corporation) | Shen, Zhijun (China National Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Corporation) | Nong, Gong (China National Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Corporation)
The block M as a foamy extra-heavy oil field in the Carabobo Area, the eastern Orinoco Belt, has been exploited by foamy oil cold production utilizing horizontal wells. The early producing area has been put into production about 10 years, existing problems of productivity declining and produced gas-oil ratio rising. Therefore, the development optimization for the early producing area should be conducted in order to obtain the more profitable oil recovery. A typical foamy oil reservoir simulation model using 5 components was created to understand the remaining oil distribution features. Based on above understandings, technical strategies were proposed for infilling well deployment in the early producing area. Results show that the gravity drainage and gravity differentiation of oil and gas during the cold production of foamy extra-heavy oil from horizontal wells by foam flooding are the main mechanisms for formation of remaining oil. And the influence factors of remaining oil distribution include horizontal well spacing, reservoir thickness, reservoir heterogeneity, interlayer distribution and reservoir rhythm. Thus tor foamy extra-heavy oil CHOP process, the enriched remaining oil area is the place between two adjacent horizontal wells with well spacing of 600m. Therefore, well infilling is an effective measure improving oil recovery factor of cold production, and the well infilling should be implemented as soon as possible to obtain better performance of cold production.
Challenging drilling operations in the Vaca Muerta unconventional shale gas play have prompted operators to implement innovative drilling techniques to improve drillability and operational efficiency. Significant benefits have been reported by utilizing Managed Pressure Drilling (MPD), Underbalanced Drilling (UBD), and/or drilling with casing; however, challenges still exist, due to a variety of reasons. The heterogeneity found from field to field and within fields has resulted in wells with significant events, some resulting in loss of the well, even on the same pad where a previous well has been drilled uneventfully.
Arguably, the most successful non-conventional drilling technique being incrementally used in the area is MPD, often combined with UBD, particularly in gas wells. As with any new technology implementation, there is a learning curve which can be accelerated by translating learnings from successful experiences.
Three key components for a successful implementation on MPD are still building a collective experience in the Vaca Muerta play. Firstly, the equipment and associated technology is the key enabler for physically perform the operations safely and efficiently.
The second component is a ‘soft’ framework consisting of a robust layered approach including overarching standard policies, the MPD strategy for implementation in the specific project, conceptual and detailed procedures, and specific work instructions.
Lastly, the human component is a group of competent personnel, whom, at their specific responsibility level, understand the ‘soft’ framework, and knows how to operate the hardware to implement the technology so that objectives are met.
The potential of the technology is limited to the weakest of these three components. A strong combination of any two of them, not complemented by the third one, will most likely result in a partial success at best, if not a complete failure at worst.
The operator had recently three major events in wells being drilled with MPD, which resulted in the loss of the wells. After implementing a training program on MPD/UBD, which emphasized the human factor and understanding of the equipment, the ‘soft’ framework of strategy, procedures and project management, the safety and efficiency during operations has increased significantly. This resulted in a better handling of events related to bottom hole pressure control without a single well loss event to the date of writing this document, approximately nine months of continuous operations. The other mainstay of this process has been the flexibility to adapt the application of the methodology based on the well challenges encountered.
Wu, Xiaye (The University of Oklahoma) | Han, Lihong (Tubular Goods Research Institute of CNPC) | Yang, Shangyu (Tubular Goods Research Institute of CNPC) | Yin, Fei (Chengdu University of Technology) | Teodoriu, Catalin (The University of Oklahoma) | Wu, Xingru (The University of Oklahoma)
Due to the layered texture and sedimentation environment, shale formations usually characterized as high heterogeneity and anisotropy in in-situ stresses. During the hydraulic fracturing process, fracturing fluid is injected at a pressure above the formation pressure. This injection process changes the local in-situ stresses in a quick and significant manner while generating fracture systems. In the regions of existing geo-features such as natural fractures and faults, local stress changes could lead to the activation of formation movement, which in return impacts the casing going through the locale. Casing deformations during hydraulic fracturing have been observed in Southwest China Sichuan basin, and it have impeded completion operations in certain regions. In order to ensure further exploring, we analyszed this phenomenon and propose practical solutions for fault reactivation prevention.
To study the mechanism of local slippage and the impact on casing integrity, we set up a 2D finite element model with considerations of in-situ stresses acquired from fields, natural fracture orientation from available seismic data, and we simulated water injection process in order to quantify potential slippage and displacement. The finite element model features an integration of casing, cementing, and formation under the hydraulic fracturing conditions. For particular parameters such as permeability and leak-off coefficeint, we conducted sensitivity studies to quantify their impacts on displacement amount.
The theoretical geomechanics studies indicate water induced slippage existence in shale due to its fracture reactivation. Using the finite element model, this paper interpreted and quantified the impact of fracturing fluid injection on casing from strike-slip fault regiems. Simulation results revealed that water injection into natural fractured shale formation can induce finite displacement characterized as fault slippage along discontinues surfaces. This study could help engineers to have a better prediction as how hydraulic fracture intereact with subsurface structures and potential risks that comes along with it. This type of casing damage can be reduced by improving well trajectory design, completion operation, and higher strength level of casing-cement system.
The findings from this study not only can be applied to naturally fractured formations, but also to other pre-existing geo-features such as discountinues surfaces. It also provides fundamental basis for more practical solution to find the measures and overcome the casing deformation problems in hydraulic fracturing.
The effect of frac-hit among the stimulated horizontal wells located in the northwest of the State of New Mexico are identified by addressing how to predict whether or not a planned well caused frac-hit for older wells nearby, and in case of the frac-hit occurrence, how to predict the degree of impact. The machine learning method is used to find the relationship between well parameters such as distance and age difference, and frac-hit occurrence and the degree of impact. Determining the probability of frac-hit occurrence is considered as a classification problem, and random forest method is used to predict the occurrence of the frac-hit. Predicting the impact of the frac-hit is considered as a regression problem, and two machine learning methods, gradient boosting and adaptive boosting (AdaBoost), are used to solve this problem. In the pool of data, the data are randomly assigned to train and test set for unbiased machine learning.
The data of the training set are put into the random forest classifier to find whether the distance, age, age difference, and bearing have any impact on the occurrence of the frac-hit. Among these four factors, the bearing has the most significant impact, which means that the weight of bearing in classification process is higher than the other parameters, followed by the distance as the second important factor. Applying the trained random forest classifier on the test set data gives 78% correct outcomes compared to the actual frac-hit data in the test set.
Considering the change of oil production due to frac-hit as the indicator to measure the degree of impact in gradient boosting and AdaBoost algorithm shows that the bearing between wells is not an influential parameter in the regression problem compared to the classification problem. In other words, if the well has already experienced the frac-hit, the importance of bearing decreases, and the distance, age difference, and age of the wells become more prominent factors. The analysis shows that the average error between the actual data and the predicted results by gradient boosting and AdaBoost is about 40%.
The results of this paper can be used by the hydraulic fracturing operators to pre-determine the frac-hit probability and its impact on existing offset wells. It can also help to refine well design strategies to minimize the risk of potential well interferences.
Managing adequately pressure drawdown should be a key technical reservoir management driver due to its major impact on cash flow, acceleration and final recovery factor for operating hydraulically fracture shale gas condensate producers. Permeability should be regarded as a key dynamic property for ultra-low permeability shale reservoirs that influences shale hydrocarbon recovery. It is paramount to develop a pressure depletion plan that captures the pressure drawdown strategy and the changes in flow capacity associated to the interaction of the nano-Darcy rock and hydraulic fractures with stress dependent permeability effects.
Defining the adequate drawdown strategy would aid maximizing the economic recovery. Considering the variability of permeability with pressure drawdown should be part of the reservoir management lifecycle for unconventional shale reservoirs. This study focus on evaluating the impact of pressure drawdown strategy on initial rates and recovery for a Duvernay Gas condensate producer with an initial condensate yield of 100-150 stb/mmscf.
A sector compositional reservoir simulation model was built for a horizontal multistage hydraulically fracture Duvernay shale gas condensate producer. A full assessment of variability of permeability in the nano-Darcy rock and in the propped hydraulic fracture stages near the wellbore region was accomplished. Aggressive, moderate and conservative pressure drawdown strategies were evaluated, considering multiple operational pressure drawdown incremental ranges from 14.5 to 95 psia per day.
Results clearly indicate that implementing daily pressure drawdown increments of 22 to 29 psia per day would provide a similar recovery factor than imposing daily pressure drawdowns of 44 to 95 psia per day. However, there is a golden operating window opportunity to accelerate recovery by imposing maximum drawdown from the early days of production and bringing significant benefits of accelerating recovery with an associate increase in revenue but the benefits of this acceleration vanished in less than one year due to substantial changes in hydraulic fracture conductivity and also in the nano-Darcy rock permeability in the near wellbore region. The reduction of nano-Darcy permeability is a function of pressure, time and distance from the hydraulic fractures. According to our results, the best reservoir management practice for operating lean/medium Gas Condensate unconventional shale producers should be maximizing pressure drawdown at the early stage of the life cycle and deferring the installation of production string to maximize inflow-outflow.
Maintaining a stable borehole and optimizing drilling are still considered to be vital practice for the success of any hydrocarbon field development and planning. The present study deliberates a case study on the estimation of pore pressure and fracture gradient for the recently decommissioned Volve oil field at the North Sea. High resolution geophysical logs drilled through the reservoir formation of the studied field have been used to estimate the overburden, pore pressure, and fracture pressure. The well-known Eaton’s method and Matthews-Kelly’s tools were used for the estimation of pore pressure and fracture gradient, respectively. Estimated outputs were calibrated and validated with the available direct downhole measurements (formation pressure measurements, LOT/FIT). Further, shear failure gradient has been calculated using Mohr-Coulomb rock failure criterion to understand the wellbore stability issues in the studied field. Largely, the pore pressure in the reservoir formation is hydrostatic in nature, except the lower Cretaceous to upper Jurassic shales, which were found to be associated with mild overpressure regimes. This study is an attempt to assess the in-situ stress system of the Volve field if CO2 is injected for geological storage in near future.
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.
The standard model for relating bulk formation resistivity to porosity and water saturation was introduced to the petroleum industry in 1941; it remains the industry standard to this day. The model was discovered empirically by means of graphical analysis. Basically, G.E. Archie discovered that when the logarithm of formation resistivity factor was plotted against the logarithm of porosity the resulting trend could be fitted by a straight line. A similar relationship was discovered connecting the logarithms of resistivity index and water saturation. When these two power laws are combined into a single equation, it can be solved for water saturation (which is not observable from a borehole) in terms of bulk formation resistivity, interstitial brine resistivity, and porosity (all of which can be estimated from observations made in boreholes). This revolutionized log interpretation. There has always been a problem with the model in terms of its “explainability”. That is, it cannot be derived in any straightforward way from accepted first principles of physics. It does not contradict any first principle, but neither does it seem to follow ineluctably from them. However, since the model works, most formation evaluators have memorized the relationships that follow from the model and simply “get used to them”. That remains the situation to this day. However, there is a path around this obstacle to understanding formation resistivity at a fundamental level, and that way forward is to abandon the resistivity formulation in favor of its reciprocal, conductivity. It is surprising that such a seemingly trivial change could open a new vista into the relationships among formation electrical properties. A conductivity formulation permits the asking of questions about how a formation’s conductivity should respond to changes not only in brine conductivity, but also in the fractional amount of brine in a formation, and its geometrical configuration. By answering these questions in an obvious way, and with some analysis of data taken in the laboratory, an intuitively obvious model explaining bulk formation conductivity emerges. The model is not the same as the Archie model. However, when certain parameters are taken to their limiting values, and the model is converted into resistivity space, Archie’s power law model is revealed as an approximation to the limiting cases. Thus, from the conductivity formulation, an intuitive understanding of the Archie model emerges. Moreover, the conductivity model can be derived in at least three different ways, each yielding different insights into formation conductivity.