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Gas lift is one of the most popular ways to increase oil-well production, and it is no secret that it is an underperformer. Back in 2014, ExxonMobil reported that by creating a team of roving gas-lift experts it was able to add an average of 22% more output on several hundred wells where the gas injection had been optimized. Gains were expected because "wells do not remain the same over time; they change," said Rodney Bane, global artificial-lift manager at ExxonMobil, in this JPT story covering the 2014 SPE Artificial Lift Conference and Exhibition. The problem with gas injection is that change is hard. Injection adjustment or repairs require either pulling the tubing to reach the injection mandrels or a wireline run. Those with good-producing wells, particularly offshore, need to weigh the possible gain against the cost and lost production during the job. Those managing more and more wells live with iffy data, injection systems prone to malfunction, horizontal wells prone to irregular flows, and a time-consuming process for calculating the proper injection rates. New approaches addressing those negatives have led a few big operators to try new systems designed to allow constant adjustments based on downhole data with electric control systems designed to be more reliable.
Izadi, Mohammad (Louisiana State University) | Nguyen, Phuc H. (Louisiana State University) | Fleifel, Hazem (Louisiana State University) | Maestre, Doris Ortiz (Ecopetrol) | Kam, Seung I. (Louisiana State University)
Summary While there are a number of mechanistic foam models available in the literature, it still is not clear how such models can be used to guide actual field development planning in enhanced oil recovery (EOR) applications. This study aims to develop the framework to determine the optimum injection condition during foam EOR processes by using a mechanistic foam model. The end product of this study is presented in a graphical manner, based on the sweep-efficiency contours (from reservoir simulations) and the reduction in gas mobility (from mechanistic modeling of foams with bubble population balance). The main outcome of this study can be summarized as follows: First, compared to gas/water injection with no foams, injection of foams can improve cumulative oil recovery and sweep efficiency significantly. Such a tendency is observed consistently in a range of total injection rates tested (low, intermediate, and high total injection rates Qt). Second, the sweep efficiency is more sensitive to the injection foam quality fg for dry foams, compared to wet foams. This proves how important bubble-population-balance modeling is to predict gas mobility reduction as a function of Qt and fg. Third, the graphical approach demonstrates how to determine the optimum injection condition and how such an optimum condition changes at different field operating conditions and limitations (i.e., communication through shale layers, limited carbon dioxide (CO2) supply, cost advantage of CO2 compared to surfactant chemicals, etc.). For example, the scenario with noncommunicating shale layers predicts the maximum sweep of 49% at fg = 55% at high Qt, while the scenarios with communicating shale layers (with 0.1-md permeability) predicts the maximum sweep of only 40% at fg = 70% at the same Qt. The use of this graphical method for economic and business decisions is also shown, as an example, to prove the versatility and robustness of this new technique.
Tian, Ye (Southwest Petroleum University and Colorado School of Mines) | Zhang, Chi (Colorado School of Mines) | Lei, Zhengdong (Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration and Development) | Yin, Xiaolong (Colorado School of Mines) | Kazemi, Hossein (Colorado School of Mines) | Wu, Yu-Shu (Colorado School of Mines (Corresponding author)
Summary Most simulators currently use the advection/diffusion model (ADM), where the total flux comprises Darcian advection and Fickian diffusion. However, significant errors can arise, especially for modeling diffusion processes in fractured unconventional reservoirs, if diffusion is modeled by the conventional Fick’s law using molar concentration. Hence, we propose an improved multicomponent diffusion model for fractured reservoirs to better quantify the multiphase multicomponent transport across the fracture/matrix interface. We first give a modified formulation of the Maxwell-Stefan (MS) equation to model the multicomponent diffusion driven by the chemical potential gradients. A physics-based modification is proposed for the ADM in fractured reservoirs, where fracture, matrix, and their interface are represented by three different yet interconnected flow domains to honor the flux continuity at the fracture/matrix interface. The added interface using a more representative fluid saturation and composition of the interface can hence better capture the transient mass fluxes between fracture and matrix. The proposed approach is also implemented in an in-house compositional simulator. The multicomponent diffusion model is validated with both intraphase and interphase diffusion experiments. Then, the improved model for fracture/matrix interaction is compared with a fine-grid model. The proposed multiple interacting continua (MINC) model with three continua (MINC3) can better match the fine-grid model’s result than the double-porosity (DP) model, which only obtains a fair match at an early time. Then, we simulate a gas huff ‘n’ puff (HnP) well in the Permian Basin to investigate the effect of diffusion within the fractured tight oil reservoir. The simulation reveals that diffusion has a minor effect on the performance of depletion when oil is the dominant phase. For gas HnP, the simulation neglecting diffusion will underestimate the oil recovery factor (RF) but overestimate the gas rate. The DP approach tends to overestimate the RF of heavy components but leads to a similar cumulative oil RF compared with MINC3. With the diffusion included in the simulation, gas HnP performance becomes more sensitive to the soaking time than the model without diffusion. Although increasing the soaking time will lead to a higher RF after considering diffusion, the incremental oil is not sufficiently large to justify a prolonged soaking time.
Abstract Monitoring and surveillance (M&S) is one of the key requisites for assessing the effectiveness and success of any Improved Oil Recovery (IOR) or Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) project. These projects can include waterflooding, gas flooding, chemical injection, or any other types. It will help understand, track, monitor and predict the injectant plume migration, flow paths, and breakthrough times. The M&S helps in quantifying the performance of the IOR/EOR project objectives. It provides a good understanding of the remaining oil saturation (ROS) and its distribution in the reservoir during and after the flood. A comprehensive and advanced monitoring and surveillance (M&S) program has to be developed for any given IOR/EOR project. The best practices of any such M&S program should include conventional, advanced and emerging novel technologies for wellbore and inter-well measurements. These include advanced time-lapse pulsed neutron, resistivity, diffusion logs, and bore-hole gravity measurements, cross-well geophysical measurements, water and gas tracers, geochemical, compositional and soil gas analyses, and 4D seismic and surface gravity measurements. The data obtained from the M&S program provide a better understanding of the reservoir dynamics and can be used to refine the reservoir simulation model and fine tune its parameters. This presentation reviews some proven best practices and draw examples from on-going projects and related novel technologies being deployed. We will then look at the new horizon for advanced M&S technologies.
Fakher, Sherif (Missouri University of Science and Technology) | Elgahawy, Youssef (University of Calgary) | Abdelaal, Hesham (University of Lisbon) | Imqam, Abdulmohsin (Missouri University of Science and Technology)
Abstract Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) in shale reservoirs has been recently shown to increase oil recovery significantly from this unconventional oil and gas source. One of the most studied EOR methods in shale reservoirs is gas injection, with a focus on carbon Dioxide (CO2) mainly due to the ability to both enhance oil recovery and store the CO2 in the formation. Even though several shale plays have reported an increase in oil recovery using CO2 injection, in some cases this method failed severely. This research attempts to investigate the ability of the CO2 to mobilize crude oil from the three most prominent features in the shale reservoirs, including shale matrix, natural fractures, and hydraulically induced fracture. Shale cores with dimensions of 1 inch in diameter and approximately 1.5 inch in length were used in all experiments. The impact of CO2 soaking time and soaking pressure on the oil recovery were studied. The cores were analyzed to understand how and where the CO2 flowed inside the cores and which prominent feature resulted in the increase in oil recovery. Also, a pre-fractured core was used to run an experiment in order to understand the oil recovery potential from fractured reservoirs. Results showed that oil recovery occurred from the shale matrix, stimulation of natural fractures by the CO2, and from the hydraulic fractures with a large volume coming from the stimulated natural fractures. By understanding where the CO2 will most likely be most productive, proper design of the CO2 EOR in shale can be done in order to maximize recovery and avoid complications during injection and production which may lead to severe operational problems.
According to the current legislation, since 01/01/2020 it is necessary to operate marine diesel engines in a wide range of areas using MGO (Marine Gas Oil). Currently, most marine diesel engines operate on HSFO (High Sulfur Fuel Oil). In the present work the effect of MGO and HSFO on the combustion mechanism and performance of Marine Diesel Auxiliary Engines is investigated. This can be accomplished via comparative evaluation of operational parameters and net combustion rate at various engine operating conditions. In this work, performance evaluation is based on the processing of measured engine cylinder pressure data acquired at sea using both fuel types. The measured cylinder pressure traces are analyzed to determine the net combustion rate, ignition delay, dynamic start of fuel injection timing, injection-combustion quality and combustion duration. Final analysis confirmed that there is considerable impact of the fuel type on engine performance and the combustion mechanism. Due to the high rotational speed of auxiliary engines, alterations in engine operation and especially the different dynamic response of the injection system between the two fuel types, led to measurably deviating engine performance, akin to different engine tuning. Severity of fuel effect was found dependent on engine type and especially condition.