Optimisation of Voidage Replacement Calculation Using Reservoir Simulations and Streamline Tracing

Abdelhamid, Osama (Saudi Aramco) | Zhang, Shu (Saudi Aramco) | Maucec, Marko (Saudi Aramco) | Fischbuch, Brett (Saudi Aramco)

OnePetro 

Abstract

Effective management of Voidage Replacement Ratio (VRR) throughout the producing life of an oil reservoir is essential for achieving optimal oil recovery. VRR is quantitatively defined as injection/production fluid volume ratio at reservoir conditions. The primary goal in managing voidage replacement is to replenish the energy in a reservoir to a degree that the producing wells yield hydrocarbons at economical rates. The determination of VRR, however, becomes more complicated when reservoirs are significantly affected by fluid influxes. This paper presents a method developed to optimize VRR calculations using streamlines, traced from finite-difference reservoir simulation model outputs.

Good reservoir management practice necessitates that conventional VRR should be maintained at or above unity. Maintaining appropriate injection performance is therefore an essential requirement for achieving optimal oil recovery in secondary recovery processes. This can be achieved through effective VRR surveillance, water breakthrough monitoring, and reservoir pressure maintenance.

This paper presents a new technique and associated workflow for rigorous VRR determination that resolves a number of shortcomings inherent in conventional VRR analysis. This rigorous VRRR determination methodology was applied to an existing field with considerable operating history including multiple displacement and recovery processes: primary depletion, aquifer influx, gas re-injection, gravity water injection, and power water injection. This new methodology utilizes finite difference reservoir simulation models to generate streamlines from the pressure field and fluxes. Streamlines represent flow paths between injectors and producers. The streamline trajectories with associated time-of-flight values thus obtained take into account geologic complexity, external fluxes, well locations, phase behavior, and reservoir flow behavior. Rigorous VRR estimates are obtained by accounting for the influxes and well allocation factors (WAF), which represent a measure of connectivity between specific injector/producer pairs with associated fluxes. The fluxes and WAF values are calculated automatically from the history-matched reservoir simulation model during streamline tracing for associated time steps.

Traditionally, the well VRR values are calculated via the formulation of well inflow performance relationship (IPR), which may result in suboptimal estimations by not accounting for external sources of energy, such as influx from neighboring zones. The presented approach allows for improved optimisation of waterflood injection efficiency, where the off-set oil production can be derived directly from reservoir material balance (MB) calculations and streamline-generated well allocation factors. In order to facilitate VRR calculations with dynamic simulation regions, we propose a workflow for streamline (SLN) based VRR calculations using the time-dependent flow-based SLN-conditioned drainage volumes, automatically extracted from the simulation grid and iteratively incorporated into simulation model constraints as a function of simulation run time-steps.