Value of Information of Frequent Time-Lapse Seismic for Thermal EOR Monitoring at Peace River

Przybysz-Jarnut, J. K. (Shell Global Solutions International B.V) | Didraga, C. (Shell Global Solutions International B.V) | Potters, J. H. H. M. (Shell Global Solutions International B.V) | Lopez, J. L. (Shell International Exploration & Production Inc.) | La Follett, J. R. (Shell International Exploration & Production Inc.) | Wills, P. B. (Shell International Exploration & Production Inc.) | Bakku, S. K. (Shell International Exploration & Production Inc.) | Xue, Y. (Shell International Exploration & Production Inc.) | Barker, T. B. (Shell International Exploration & Production Inc.) | Brouwer, D. R. (Shell Canada Limited)


Time-lapse seismic surveillance is a proven technology for areal conformance monitoring offshore, but not onshore due to its high cost and typically poor data quality in that environment. Yet a number of examples in the industry show that nonuniform reservoir sweep is common in IOR and EOR projects and, if not addressed, it can significantly reduce ultimate recovery. In such projects the efficacy of injectants such as water, steam, gas, and solvents needs to be maximized to reduce cost and environmental footprint. This requires that we know what happens in-between wells, and for this purpose we conducted a pilot of high fidelity frequent seismic monitoring of thermal EOR redevelopment in one of the production pads in the bitumen deposits in Peace River, Canada. We detected patterns that can be directly linked to dynamic reservoir changes on a weekly or more frequent basis, such as pressure increase during injection, fluid phase changes, and connection to previously stimulated zones. The data also highlight the imprint of previous operations on the reservoir state prior to the current redevelopment, stressing the challenges faced when managing steam conformance. Our observations indicate that frequent time-lapse seismic images significantly contribute to determining injection/production strategy adjustments aimed at improved areal steam conformance.