Fuxa, Jason (Baker Hughes) | Di Giampaolo, Paolo (Baker Hughes) | Ferrara, Giovanni (ENI) | Di Pietro, Mario (Baker Hughes) | Sportelli, Marco (ENI) | Ripa, Giuseppe (ENI) | Di Campli, Antonio (Baker Hughes)
This paper details a field application of Shaped Memory Polymer (SMP) material for sand management delivering an innovative approach for sand control completions. The use of the technology has enabled profitable exploitation of residual reserves in a mature gas field offshore Adriatic Sea. The paper reviews details of the field deployment, with both economic and well performance results described.
The Barbara Field was discovered in 1971 and 102 wells have been drilled to date. The trap is a very gentle, slightly asymmetrical anticline made by Pleistocene sandy turbidites,sedimented on the underlying carbonate substrate. Methane gas bearing layers have been sealed by several argillaceous intercalations that worked also as the source rocks of this multilayer reservoir. The sandy layers in this Pleistocene sequence, Carola Formation, have thickness ranging from few centimeters up to some meters, and porosity from 22 up to 33%. Isolation of multiple gas-water contacts and fines production have been two crucial issues while producing the field.
Since 2000, all seven Barbara platforms have required workovers by means of performing sidetracks. Due to the reservoir characteristics, the well interventions have been completed with multi-layer, stacked cased-hole sand control completions. Despite a continuous improvement of procedures and technique, the traditional sand control methods have been efficient but were no longer profitable, due to challenging market conditions.
An open-hole completion using SMP combined with zonal isolation and selective production has proved to be an effective alternative to cased-hole sand control. This novel completion approach resulted in a significant reduction in both cost and rig time. It is estimated that nearly two weeks of rig time was saved and an overall workover cost reduction of approximately 35%, with further efficiencies to be realized on upcoming deployments. To date, the completion has proved to be an effective sand control method, with no produced solids, no plugging effect, and gas production that has met expectations.
In the last years, several technologies have been developed to either allow or increase production from heavy oil fields. The greatest challenge is to reduce oil viscosity by heating in depth the formation. Despite the availability of many methods, there is no one that is at the same time technically efficient, economically profitable, environmentally-friendly and applicable to all types of heavy oil reservoirs. This still generates a large amount of research investments for the Major Oil Companies.
Eni E&P has initiated an R&D project based on the innovative concept of interconnecting two horizontal wells. The main objective is to realize a closed circuit to allow the continuous circulation of a superheated fluid across a lengthy horizontal section. The heat transferred from the fluid to the formation will reduce viscosity of the heavy oil inside the reservoir and will improve its recovery. The fluid to be circulated will be "super heated" by means of thermodynamic solar energy.
All the above make the method studied by Eni E&P applicable to almost all types of heavy oil deposits, characterized by a high technical-economical efficiency and highly eco-friendly. Several aspects are involved in the achievement of such a closed circuit and need to be considered while performing drilling, intersecting and tubing running operations.
Specially fit for purpose well profiles and casing/open hole schemes are foreseen in order to correctly reach the reservoir with the intended hole section and align the two wells with a suitable "bridge" (casing or liner). Due to the very high temperature involved in this application, in the above mentioned R&D project there is consideration in developing new materials and welded casing pipes.
This paper will describe the approach, the status of the project and the expected results.