Production Optimization Challenges and Solutions for Heavy Oil - North Kuwait

Bassam, Abdul-Aziz (Kuwait Oil Company) | Al-Besairi, Ghazi (Kuwait Oil Company) | Al-Dahash, Sulaiman (Kuwait Oil Company) | Sierra, Tomas (Weatherford) | Mohamed, Assem (Weatherford) | Heshmat, Kareem (Weatherford)


The demand for digital oil field solutions in artificially lifted wells is higher than ever, especially for wells producing heavy oil with high sand content and gas. A real-time supervisory control and data acquisition solution has been applied in a large-scale thermal pilot for 28 instrumented sucker rod pumping wells in North Kuwait. This paper focuses on the advantages of real-time data acquisition for identifying productionoptimization candidates, improving pump performance, and minimizing down time when using intelligent alarms and an analysis engine. Real-time surveillance provided a huge amount of information to be analyzed and discussed by well surveillance and field development teams to determine required actions based on individual well performance. Controller alarms and intelligent configurable alarms in one screen enabled early detection of unexpected/unwanted well behavior, re-investigating well potential, and taking necessary actions. The challenge was to handle heavy oil, sand, and gas production, maintain all wells at optimum running conditions before and after steam injections, and take into consideration the effect that injections would have on nearby wells. Recording in the database a "tracking item" for each well event enabled review and evaluation of the wells and creation of optimization reports. The daily, 24-hour surveillance of the wells resulted in observing common problems/issues on almost all wells and other individual issues for specific wells.