The critical and subcritical multiphase flow through wellhead restrictions
of a prolific oil field in the Middle East is investigated, and two sets of new
correlations are presented. The first set of correlations is developed by using
40 field tests representing critical flow conditions. The second set of
correlations is based on 139 field tests representing subcritical flow
conditions of gas/liquid mixtures through wellhead chokes.
For the critical multiphase flow condition, the predicted oil flow rates by
the new set of correlations are in excellent agreement with the measured ones.
The absolute average percent difference (AAPD) is between 1.88 and 4.37, and
the corresponding standard of deviation (SD) is between 2.52 and 6.52. These
results are found to be statistically superior to those predicted by other
published correlations considered in this work. During the subcritical
gas/liquid flow conditions through surface chokes, the accuracy of oil flow
rates predicted by the new set of correlations seems to be sensitive to the
type and size of the choke being used. For Cameron LD type and 144/64-in.
choke, the oil flow rates predicted by the proposed correlation are superior to
those predicted by other methods available in the literature, with AAPD of 8.5.
However, for smaller choke sizes of 96/64 and 64/64 in., the oil flow rates
predicted by the new correlations and other methods are found to be close to
each other. For Cameron F type and 144/64-in. choke size, the oil flow rates
predicted by the new correlation are closely matched by those predicted by
other published methods, with AAPD of 13.7. For smaller choke sizes of 80/64
and 64/64 in., few field tests are available, and the predications of all
methods, including the proposed ones, show similar statistical results. The
above findings for Cameron F choke also seem to apply to beaned wellhead
assemblies for this particular oil field.
© 2010. Society of Petroleum Engineers
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- Original manuscript received:
11 January 2009
- Meeting paper published:
31 May 2009
- Revised manuscript received:
30 April 2009
- Manuscript approved:
18 May 2009
- Published online:
18 March 2010
- Version of record:
18 March 2010