Cinar, Yildiray (The University of New South Wales) | Arns, Christoph (The University of New South Wales) | Dehghan Khalili, Ahmad (The University of New South Wales) | Yanici, Sefer (The University of New South Wales)
Resistivity measurements play a key role in hydrocarbon in place calculations for oil and gas reservoirs. They are a direct indi-cator of fluid saturation and connected pore space available in the formation. Carbonate rocks, which host around half of the world's hydrocarbons, exhibit a wide range of porosities with scales spanning from nanometres to centimetres. The often sig-nificant amount of microporosity displayed by Carbonate rocks emphasizes the necessity of an adequate characterization of their micro-features and their contribution to hydrocarbon in place. In this paper we examine upscaling methods to probe for-mation factor of a fully saturated carbonate sample using an X-ray CT based numerical approach and compare to experimental measurements.
Three-dimensional high-resolution X-ray CT enables the numerical calculation of petrophysical properties of interest at the pore scale with resolutions down to a few microns per voxel. For more complex and heterogeneous samples however, a direct calculation of petrophysical properties is not feasible, since the required resolution and a sufficient field of view cannot be obtained simultaneously. Thus an integration of measurements at different scale is required. In this study a carbonate sample of 38mm in diameter is first scanned using the X-ray CT method with a resolution of 26µm. After accompanying experimental measurements on the full plug, four 5mm plugs were drilled vertically from this sample and X-ray CT images of these plugs acquired at resolutions down to 2.74 µm. We calculate the porosity of the sample (macro- and micro-porosities) using the phase separation methods and then predict the formation factor of the sample at several scales using a Laplace solver. The formation factor is calculated by using a general value of m=2 as cementation factor for intermediate porosity voxels. We compare to experimental measurements of formation factor and porosity both at the small plug and full plug scale and find good agreement.
To assess the degree of uncertainty of the numerical estimate, we probe the extent of heterogeneity by investigating the size of a representative elementary volume (REV) for formation factor. We find that for the considered heterogeneous carbonate sam-ple, formation factor varies considerably over intervals less than a centimetre. Our results show that this variation could be explained by different cementation exponents applied at the micro-voxel scale, with the exemption of one plug, for which the cementation exponent would have to be unreasonably low. These cementation factors are derived by direct comparison be-tween numerical simulation and experiment. We conclude that for one plug an error in experimental measurement might have occurred. The numerical approach presented here therefore aids in quality control. Excluding this plug in the upscaling proce-dure improves the agreement with the experimental result for the whole core while still underestimating formation factor. Al-lowing for a constant m=2 in the simulation at the small scale and using directly the resulting relationship between porosity and formation factor in the upscaling process leads to an overestimation of formation factor.
A multilateral (MLT) well with an advanced intelligent completion string was recently completed in the Middle East. The well was designed as a "stacked?? dual producer in the upper and lower reservoir, and was drilled using the latest geo-steering techniques to accurately place the wellbore in a highly faulted and geologically complex structure. Rotary-steerable drilling systems (RSS) were used in several of the hole sections, along with advanced logging-while-drilling (LWD) tools including multi-pole acoustic, azimuthal deep resistivity, and resistivity at bit. Encounters with unstable shale and faults made the drilling difficult, but the decisions made in real-time to navigate the well resulted in a very high percentage of net pay in both laterals.
This well combined TAML Level 4 multilateral (MLT) technology with passive inflow control devices in the laterals and an advanced intelligent completion system in the mainbore. The TAML Level 4 multilateral junction was cemented to isolate unstable shale above the reservoir and to provide zonal isolation from the lateral completions, which were compartmentalized into stages with proprietary swellable packers and inflow control devices (ICDs). The intelligent completion was run in the mainbore with two interval control valves (ICVs) and isolation ball valve (LV ICV) to manage the production from each of the two laterals independently. The ICVs and LV ICV are controlled hydraulically through four control lines to surface, which were run in a flat-pack with one electric line to control a downhole gauge package for each lateral. Finally, the well was configured to allow the installation of a large electric submersible pump (ESP) to be run inside the upper 9-5/8-in. production tubing.
This project required intensive planning and coordination for more than a year in advance, which made the project successful despite the difficult drilling conditions and resulted in very little NPT for wellbore construction operations. This paper will focus on the planning, execution and lessons learned from the project.
In the existing horizontal wells in the target sand reservoir of the target field, premature water breakthrough caused the water cut trend to increase within months of production. . This occurred because the reservoir has a very high permeability sands along with active faults containing high viscous reservoir fluids.
New technologies were required to overcome the issue, maximize reservoir contact and enhance a more uniform oil production from a single location. Introducing the smart TAML Level-4 MLT well design to this reservoir along with inflow control device (ICD), inflow control valve (ICV), isolation ball valve (LV ICV) and other downhole gauges proved to be the optimum solution. It also aided in managing the production and the reservoir proactively to achieve maximum oil recovery. Moreover, drilling several laterals from a single wellbore with the ability to control production from both laterals had a great economic advantage because of the optimized cost effective field management.
Thread compound "dope?? in the vernacular, has been used routinely in assembling joints of casing and tubing. The practice in almost universal application in the oil and gas industry involves the manual application of the lubricant in a fashion that is rudimentary, non-systematic and unquantifiable. There is evidence presented in this paper that damage to the near-well zone and other unpleasant events may be associated with the thread compound.
This paper presents the results of both laboratory and field investigations quantifying the effects of the dope on near-well damage. During the assembly of tubing and casing a portion of the thread compound is exuded inside and outside the connection and gets access to the well fluids through the tubing and annular space. Studies presented here show that the dope forms a suspension which penetrates and damages the formation. The studies used standard fluid circulation velocities during typical completion operations.
To characterize and quantify the problem, core samples from the El Tordillo field, with different permeabilities were used. The samples were subjected to the circulation of the suspension created by the thread compound and the completion fluid, measuring the change in the core permeability. The work simulated the well conditions during water injection for water injection wells and during acid treatments for producer wells. A significant reduction in permeability, manifested by a fast and a very large increase in pressure, was measured, at the front face of the core sample. The same measurements showed a far smaller impact in the core body suggesting very minor penetration of dope particles.
This paper describes the laboratory and field work, with description of the test protocols, well conditions and laboratory emulation of field conditions that were used.
The reliability of the estimated parameters in well test analysis depends on the accuracy of measured data. Early time data are usually controlled by the wellbore storage effect. However, this effect may last for the pseudo-radial flow or the boundary dominated flow. Eliminating this effect is an option for restoring the real data. Using the data with this effect is another option that can be used successfully for reservoir characterization.
This paper introduces a new technique for interpreting the pressure behavior of horizontal wells and fractured formations with wellbore storage. A new analytical model describes the early time data has been derived for both horizontal wells and horizontal wells intersecting multiple hydraulic fractures. Several models for the relationships of the peak points with the pressure, pressure derivative and time have been proposed in this study for different wellbore storage coefficients. A complete set of type curves has been included for different wellbore lengths, skin factors and wellbore storage coefficients. The study has shown that early radial flow for short to moderate horizontal wells is the most affected flow regime by the wellbore storage. For long horizontal wells, the early linear flow is the most affected flow regime by the wellbore storage effect.
The most important finding in this study is the ability to run a short test and use the early time data only for characterizing the formation. This means there is no need to run a long time test to reach the pseudo-steady state. Therefore, from the wellbore storage dominated flow, the early radial and pseudo-radial flow can be established for horizontal wells and hydraulic fractured formations. A step-by-step procedure for analyzing pressure tests using the analytical models (TDS) and the type curves is also included in this paper for several numerical examples.
A live oil sample was subjected to a solid detection system (SDS) to measure asphaltene onset point (AOP) at 3850 psi, and asphaltene content of 1.3%. A high-resolution digital camera was used to measure asphaltene particle size distribution. The result showed that asphaltene particles were not uniform in size, but has a normal distribution of 100-120 µm. Asphaltene reversibility to dissolved back into the oil with increasing pressure was only 35% of the original deposition. Two core samples were examined for formation damage due to asphaltene deposition. A Low permeability core showed significant permeability reduction exceeding 50% of its baseline permeability, and the higher permeability core showed less permeability decline, even with the same asphaltene precipitation.
Sanyal, Tirtharenu (Kuwait Oil Company) | Al-Hamad, Khairyah (KOC) | Jain, Anil Kumar (KOC) | Al-Haddad, Ali Abbas (KISR) | Kholosy, Sohib (KISR) | Ali, Mohammad A.J. (Kuwait Inst. Scientific Rsch.) | Abu Sennah, Heba Farag (Kuwait Oil Company)
Improved oil recovery for heavy oil reservoirs is becoming a new research study for Kuwaiti reservoirs. There are two mechanisms for improved oil recovery by thermal methods. The first method is to heat the oil to higher temperatures, and thereby, decrease its viscosity for improved mobility. The second mechanism is similar to water flooding, in which oil is displaced to the production wells. While more steam is needed for this method than for the cyclic method, it is typically more effective at recovering a larger portion of the oil.
Steam injection heats up the oil and reduce its viscosity for better mobility and higher sweep efficiency. During this process, the velocity of the moving oil increases with lower viscosity oil; and thus, the heated zone around the injection well will have high velocity. The increase of velocity in an unconsolidated formation is usually accompanied with sand movement in the reservoir creating a potential problem.
The objective of this study was to understand the effect of flowrate and viscosity on sand production in heavy oil reservoir that is subjected for thermal recovery process. The results would be useful for designing completion under steam injection where the viscosity of the oil is expected to change due to thermal operations.
A total of 21 representative core samples were selected from different wells in Kuwait. A reservoir condition core flooding system was used to flow oil into the core plugs and to examine sand production. Initially, the baseline liquid permeability was measured with low viscosity oil and low flowrate. Then, the flowrate was increased gradually and monitored to establish the value for sand movement for each plug sample. At the end of the test, the produced oil containing sand was filtered for sand content.
The result showed that sand production increased with higher viscosity oil and high flowrate. However, sand compaction at the injection face of the cores was more significant than sand production. In addition, high confining pressure contributes to additional sand production. The average critical velocity was estimated ranged from 18 to 257 ft/day for the 0.74 cp oil, 2 to 121 ft/day for the 16 cp oil, and 1 to 26 ft/day for the 684 cp oil.
The field X is a brown heavy oil field producing under strong bottom water drive since the mid-1980. Production is from a combination of Amin aeolian and Al Khlata glacial reservoir sediments. At present, the development is focused on drilling horizontal infill wells. One of the biggest challenges is the unfavorable mobility contrast between the heavy oil and water causing early water breakthrough.
The Amin Formation, the primary reservoir, is characterized by a high net to gross ratio and an average porosity of 30 %. However the initial hydrocarbon saturation at the same porosity often varies by 20 % in different parts of the field. Furthermore, core measurements show an order of magnitude scatter in permeability at the same porosity, indicating the presence of different facies. In early studies these variations were attributed mainly to the grain size variations. A later petrographical study found that the abundance of clays and feldspars could also severely reduce permeability, but may retain high porosity.
In the current Study it was found that the rocks have variable radioactivity due to the presence of radioactive Potassium isotope associated with feldspars. A fare correlation was observed between the grain size and the content of feldspars from core. A novel approach to reservoir characterization integrating core and logs was developed leading to a major breakthrough in the reservoir characterization including:
• Enhanced permeability prediction using normalized Gamma Ray (GR) log as 3rd parameter;
• Facies identification using normalized Gamma Ray cut-off;
• Facies based Saturation-Height models.
This work is a good example of advances in reservoir characterization achieved by integrating core and log data. It results in better understanding of reservoir properties distribution, optimization of completions of new wells and improvement of further development scenarios. In particular, abnormally high gross production and high water cut in the north of the field is currently in line with new facies scheme.
Excessive water production from unwanted zones in oil producing wells is one of the major challenges faced by the oil industry. The applicability of organically crosslinked polymer (OCP) systems as sealants for water shutoff treatments in temperatures up to 350°F is well documented. However, their effectiveness at temperatures above 350°F has not been evaluated. This paper presents experimental data from using an OCP system for water shutoff treatments at 400°F.
At temperatures around 400°F, crosslinking is expected to happen faster and can lead to premature gelation of the recipe before the entire treatment is in place. Thus, controlling the gelation time at such temperatures is extremely crucial. Optimizing the amount of retarder is essential to provide adequate time for placement of the treatment fluid. This paper provides gelation time data at temperatures between 350 and 400°F with different amounts of retarder. With an optimum amount of retarder, the OCP showed a gelation time of 1 hr 20 min.
This paper also describes the experimental setup used to study and determine the long-term stability of the OCP system at 400°F. Sand packs measuring 1-ft long were used for the test to simulate formation conditions. Once the optimized OCP recipe was gelled inside the sand pack, measurements were taken by gradually applying incremental differential pressure (?P) to evaluate the sealant at temperature, as well as the threshold ?P the system could withstand. Even after one month at 400°F, the OCP recipe was able to sustain a ?P of 950 psi over the sand pack.
The data indicates the applicability of this system as an effective conformance product to shut off water-producing zones over an extended period of time at 400°F.
This paper analyzes reaction and thermal front development in porous reservoirs with reacting flows, such as those encountered in shale oil extraction. A set of dimensionless parameters and a 3D code are developed in order to investigate the important physical and chemical variables of such reservoirs when heated by in situ methods. This contribution builds on a 1D model developed for the precursor study to this work. Theory necessary for this study is presented, namely shale decomposition chemical mechanisms, governing equations for multiphase flow in porous media and necessary closure models. Plotting the ratio of the thermal wave speed to the fluid speed allows one to infer that the reaction wave front ends where this ratio is at a minimum. The reaction front follows the thermal front closely, thus allowing assumptions to be made about the extent of decomposition solely by looking at thermal wave progression. Furthermore, this sensitivity analysis showed that a certain minimum permeability is required in order to ensure the formation of a traveling thermal wave. It was found that by studying the non-dimensional governing parameters of the system one can ascribe characteristic values for these parameters for given initial and boundary conditions. This allows one to roughly predict the performance of a particular method on a particular reservoir given approximate values for initial and boundary conditions. Channelling and flow blockage due to carbon residue buildup impeded each method's performance. Blockage was found to be a result of imbalanced heating.
Transverse fractures created from horizontal wells are a common choice in tight and shale gas reservoirs. Previous work has shown that proppant pack permeability reduction due to non-Darcy flow in a transverse fracture from a horizontal well causes significant reduction in the fracture performance when the gas formation permeability exceeds 0.5 md. There are other configurations and architectures such as aligning the well trajectory with the fracture, either by drilling horizontal wells in the direction that results in longitudinal fractures or by just sticking with drilling vertical wells. However, when drilling and fracturing costs are considered, productivity is not the only optimization consideration.
The field example illustrates a case when the apparent choice to use transverse fractures from horizontal wells proved to be suboptimal from the productivity perspective, but fundamental considering economics. Parametric studies for permeability ranging from 0.01 to 5 md illustrate the importance of economics in addition to physical performance. For similar reservoir characteristics, the optimum fractured well architecture varies considerably, and therefore an extensive reservoir engineering approach may be necessary beyond the well completions and/or current prejudices and inadequate understanding.