In this paper, geomechanics is coupled with reservoir flow for modeling the depletion and deformation in fractured vuggy carbonate reservoir. Different from the dual- and triple-porosity models or the coupled approaches in which the vugs are considered as a continuous porosity, the vugs are treated as virtual volumes in this study. For each vug, the fluid exchange at the vug-matrix interface is dynamically calculated with time evolution and the pore pressure in the vugs is updated through considering both the fluid material balance and the volume change due to the mechanical deformation of vug. The fluid-mechanical interaction in the rock matrix and natural fractures is calculated based on the framework of Biot's poroelstic theory. The mechanical and hydraulic interactions between vugs and matrix are preserved and the stress evolution due to the depletion can be dynamically updated. The results in this study show that, the depletion process is mainly controlled by the fluid storage of the vugs. Fluid modulus is thus a more sensitive parameter than the rock/fracture modulus in terms of the depletion. However, the rock/fracture modulus can also affect the deformation of the system and thus affect the volume and pressure changes of the vugs.
The modeling and numerical simulation of fluid flow in naturally fractured carbonate karst reservoirs are extremely challenging due to non-Darcy flow in vugs and caves connected by fracture networks. The momentum balance of such flow has been shown to be better described by the Brinkman equation both physically and mathematically, and many methods have been proposed in the literature dealing with the steady-state Brinkman model. We carry Brinkman's idea one step further and propose a transient flow model which consists of the Brinkman equation and a generalized material balance equation, and the latter has proven to be exact in the fractured carbonate karst reservoir. Finite differences are implemented for the solution of the proposed transient flow model. This solution method is more straightforward, easier to derive and implement, and more apt to generalization from 2D to 3D cases than alternative techniques.
Numerical simulation of the transient Brinkman model requires explicit solution of not only pressure at the center of each grid block, but also velocities at the interfaces between the blocks, which exaggerates the computational cost and makes the computational process more difficult and less stable. In this paper, we propose a simplified finite difference formulation of the transient Brinkman model, which significantly reduces the computational time of the simulation process, and improves accuracy and stability of the simulation results. We update our reservoir simulator with this new formulation and illustrate it with a complex 3D naturally fractured carbonate karst reservoir model. The results of this study form the foundation for future 3D multi-phase reservoir cases.
The need to develop new tools that allow reservoir engineers to optimize reservoir performance is becoming more demanding by the day. One of the most challenging and influential problems facing reservoir engineers is well placement optimization.
The North Kuwait field (NKF) consists of six fields containing four naturally fractured carbonate formations. The reservoirs are composed of relatively tight limestone and dolomite embedded with anhydrate and shale. The fields are divided into isolated compartments based on fault zones and supported by a combination of different fluid compositions, initial pressures, and estimated free-water levels. Due to natural complexity, tightness, and high drilling costs of wells in the NKF, it is very important to identify the sweet spots and the optimum well locations.
This paper presents two intelligent methods that use dynamic numerical simulation model results and static reservoir properties to identify zones with a high-production potential: reservoir opportunity index (ROI) and simulation opportunity index (SOI). The Petrel* E&P software platform was chosen as the integrated platform to implement the workflow. The fit-for-purpose time dependent 2D maps generated by the Petrel platform facilitated the decision-making process used for locating new wells in the dominant flow system and provided immense support for field-development plans.
The difference between the two methods is insignificant because of reservoir tightness, limited interference, and natural uncertainty on compartmentalization. At this stage, pressure is not a key parameter. As a result, unlike brown fields, less weight was given to simulated pressure, and SOI was used to select the well locations.
The results of this study show that implementing these workflows and obtaining the resulting maps significantly improve the selection process to identify the most productive areas and layers in a field. Also, the optimum numbers of wells using this method obtained in less time and with fewer resources are compared with results using traditional industry approaches.