Digital technologies are changing the way we work and are empowering the world. The oilfield is no different. Directional drilling is no longer challenged by distance or harsh environments. One oilfield service company began an innovative digital approach to directional drilling and logging while drilling (LWD) over a decade ago. Recently, technology and infrastructure enabled the industry to drill directional wells without engineers physically at the wellsite and independent of technical complexity. Digitalization is a complicated task for any service company. It requires a complete change of all workflows and implementation of cutting-edge technologies to drive the change. The current infrastructure includes a worldwide network of digitally connected operation centers (DCOCs) that provide advanced services to ensure operations are delivered efficiently and can be easily implemented. Even in the case of unforeseen circumstances when field engineers cannot go physically to the wellsite, operations can continue normally with some management of the change. As a result, multiple locations are currently drilling various well types, including horizontal wells with zero or minimal personnel at the wellsite.
It is evident, with ongoing digitalization in many forward-thinking industries that eventually drilling will take the neccessary steps. This is understandable due to the cost and operational norms of the industry but applying the technology in an efficient and cost-effective manner will yield gains for even the most discerning high-volume markets and, at the same time, improving key performance indicators. Directional drilling digitalization is still not a widely accepted concept for drilling everywhere on the planet. Companies continue work with full crews on location in most operations. The conservative approach of delivering directional and LWD services with the engineering teams located at the wellsite was restricting operators, so complicated well profiles in many areas, including some areas in the Middle East, were avoided. This paper is intended to lift the veil of uncertainty from digital directional drilling and show what is possible today and in the future. This paper will highlight the history of digital directional drilling operations, measurable benefits, lessons learned, and what is done today, and finally focus on the next steps in the digital evolution of drilling. Several new enabling technologies, innovative processes, and analysis of results will be discussed in the context of this new way of working.
Drilling in the Appalachian basin in Pennsylvania has evolved since its inception. Operators have shifted their focus from mere wellbore delivery to delivering wells in the shortest amount of time to reduce risks and costs, as well as drive efficiency. This paper presents a case study in which offline cementing helped improve operation efficiency by reducing drilling times and provided significant cost savings.
Offline cementing is not a new concept. In Q4 2015, an operator drilling in the Eagle Ford shale began the movement of their program toward offline cementing of both the surface and production casings. The operator determined that reducing flat time was crucial to create a cost savings (
The service company was able to cement both the surface and intermediate casing strings offline while the operator skidded to the next well to begin rigging up. All surface casings were drilled and cemented offline and the rig skidded back to drill for the intermediate casings, which were also cemented offline. Approximately 15 hours was saved by skidding between surface strings, and another 16 hours was saved between intermediate casings.
This paper discusses the successful use of offline cementing during drilling operations in northeastern Pennsylvania. The flat time reduction achieved during this drilling program can be quantified into a cost savings of approximately USD 80,000 per well.
Desai, Sameer Faisal (Kuwait Oil Company) | Rane, Nitin M. (Kuwait Oil Company) | Al-Shammari, Baraa S. (Kuwait Oil Company) | Al-Sabea, Salem H. (Kuwait Oil Company) | Al-Naqi, Meqdad (Kuwait Oil Company)
Kuwait Oil Company initiatives for ushering in a new era of digital transformation of its assets to intelligently and optimally manage the Oil and Gas fields were successfully realized with the completion of three pilot projects entitled Kuwait Integrated Digital Fields (KwIDF). This paper discusses major achievements of the Digital Oilfield technology implemented in Burgan KwIDF project and provides an insight on the challenges in operating it.
The Burgan KwIDF pilot successfully transformed GC-1 production asset into a fully instrumented DOF comprising of digital instruments and infrastructure installed at well site and the production facility. Real-time production data is transmitted to a state of the art collaboration center that integrates data continuously with automated workflows for validation, modeling and tuning of well and facility models. Right time decision support information generated from smart visualization tools allow quick actions for production optimization, well and facility management in a collaborative work environment.
There is persistent value realization from KwIDF technology implemented in Burgan field. It has generated substantial cost savings with faster response time in restoring production and reduction in non-productive time. Driven by the digital environment asset production has sustained at target as production gain opportunities are capitalized and losses compensated quickly.
Over the period of time with experience in utilizing the DOF technology it has been observed that the technology sustainment is dependent on the technology providers to a large extent. The main components that require their continuous support are the digital instruments, proprietary software, hardware and related infrastructure. Technical expertise in each domain is necessary for ensuring continuous and smooth operations in the field, wellsite and collaboration centers. Development of an integrated team of domain experts is crucial for successfully managing the DOF operations. Change management initiatives for developing an in house user champion team is mandatory for ensuring sustainment. The important lessons learned and solutions are discussed in detail.
In 2016, Malaysia Petroleum Management (MPM), the regulatory body of PETRONAS launched a 3 year dedicated strategy to intensify the idle wells restoration and production enhancement activities in order to maximize profitability through efficiency and success rate improvement. The basis of this strategy is the risk-sharing integrated operations in which the industry embraced it in all major well intervention activities. As the drilling activities dropped drastically over the past few years, it was crucial that the well intervention activities are carried out with high efficiency and success rate to restore the production.
The strategy went through various development changes throughout the 3 year journey. As the well intervention scope covers a wide range of activities, the framework of this integrated risk sharing mechanism provided the flexibility that is required for the execution of the various scopes and meet specific value targets either profitability from production gain or cost saving from decommissioning and infill drilling. Each of the project carried unique Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) as the guiding principles to drive the efficiency improvement that was required. A unique process called Total Wells Management (TWM) was implemented as the overlaying guide to further improve the uncertainty of subsurface challenges, operation optimization and commercial risk exposure.
This paper outlines the overall post mortem analysis of the 22 projects that were executed under this integrated operations strategy between MPM, ten operators and five main service companies. This strategy, known to the industry as the Integrated Idle Wells Restoration (IIWR) program, has become the new norm on how well intervention and subsurface assessments are executed to yield the best results especially in late life fields. The risk sharing integrated framework have proven to be a win-win scenario for all involved parties. The scope was also extended to cover non production adding activities such as wells decommissioning, well startups and pre drilling zonal isolation. IIWR have also opened up the opportunities for many ‘first in Malaysia’ projects such as the first subsea hydraulic intervention, first subsea decommissioning and also the reinstatement of technologies such as coiled tubing catenary. The biggest impact from this 3 years strategy implementation can be seen from the Unit Enhancement Cost (UEC) improvement where the average UEC was reduced from 14 to 17 USD per barrel of oil to about 4 to 7 USD barrel of oil.
Although there were major challenges, the overall results have been very encouraging. This framework is also being replicated for drilling and completion activities as well. Specific to well intervention, this IIWR framework is currently being put through an enhancement process to further expand the landscape of well intervention activities without compromising safety, operational efficiency and business profitability.
Partnerships with big tech, tech startups, and innovative service companies--and the merging of their data, cloud, and software applications--are proving essential for operators in the scaling phase of digital deployment. Equinor has been among the first of many international oil companies to actively seek out and form such alliances. The Norwegian operator is in the process of leveraging its massive collection of data by making it accessible both inside and outside the company to improve its next generation of upstream projects--a task so big that it certainly cannot go it alone. "The challenge is not what data to share but to define the rules of the game for how to share [the data]," said Anders Opedal, Equinor executive vice president of technology, projects, and drilling, during the recent Halliburton Landmark Innovation Forum and Expo (LIFE 2019) in Houston. To overcome the industry's inclination toward data protectionism, Equinor became a founding member of the Open Subsurface Data Universe (OSDU) initiative, a global collaboration between most of the world's largest operators and service firms to define standards for an open-data architecture for subsurface data.
On a Sunday in mid-May, members of the London Section Emerging Leaders Program (ELP) had the opportunity to meet in an informal setting and share their geological experiences at one of the most significant geological settings in southern England. Located 20 miles west of BP's Wytch Farm oil field, Lulworth cove is the most visited geological site in Britain. Lulworth cove shows excellent exposures of folded Jurassic and Cretaceous strata such as Portland stone, Purbeck limestones and shales, and Wealden maerls. From a tectonic point of view, the site reveals the well-preserved Purbeck monocline, caused by a tectonic inversion in what is now the English Channel. The day was organized so that 12 ELP members from operating and service companies in attendance could informally share experiences.
Numerous carbonate reservoir discoveries were made in Indonesia (
The process involves multiple cycles—from formation evaluation (e.g., geomechanics analysis, design of an effective fracturing method, and production forecasting) through the economic impact to the operator. During the early phase of this integrated study, the uncertainties of all static and dynamic parameters (i.e., geological complexity, rock physics, and stress profile) were considered for fracturing design. Production performances from multiple fracturing stimulation scenarios were then modeled and compared to select the plan that optimizes production for the Berai Formation.
Results demonstrated an effective multidiscipline approach toward a comprehensive strategy to meet the ultimate objective in optimizing production. This project leveraged formation evaluation and fracturing design to deliver integrated solutions from exploration to accurate production forecast. The well stimulations were performed by carefully selecting fluid characteristics based on geological-petrophysical properties, pressure, and stress profiles within the area. Results yielded excellent production gains—for the best case, up to 50% with an average of 40% in comparison with initial production by using an acid that provides optimum fracture geometry and permeability.
This opportunity demonstrated the importance of understanding formation behavior and the parameters that aid the selection of an appropriate fracturing design for a low porosity/permeability carbonate reservoir.
This seminar will teach participants how to identify, evaluate, and quantify risk and uncertainty in everyday oil and gas economic situations. It reviews the development of pragmatic tools, methods, and understandings for professionals that are applicable to companies of all sizes. The seminar also briefly reviews statistics, the relationship between risk and return, and hedging and future markets. Strategic thinking and planning are key elements in an organisation’s journey to maximise value to shareholders, customers, and employees. Through this workshop, attendees will go through the different processes involved in strategic planning including the elements of organisational SWOT, business scenario and options development, elaboration of strategic options and communication to stakeholders.
Full-year 2017 and fourth-quarter financial results show an improving picture for the industry’s three largest oilfield services companies. After 3-plus years of cutbacks, the service sector outlook has turned relatively positive. More than 10,000 global industry professionals are expected to attend the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) from 9–11 October in San Antonio, Texas.