Development and practical implementation of reliable and adequate reservoir models plays a vital role in solving the production challenges, of which the complexity and importance is constantly increasing in the recent decades. The following major areas of technology applications and geological/engineering challenges in horizontal wells and multilateral wells covered are:
Geosteering, directional drilling, and formation evaluation:
Horizontal wells are currently becoming a standard way to produce the reservoirs, and the number of HA/ML wells being drilled often supersedes the volume of vertical drilling. The growing volume and complexity of horizontal drilling introduces more specific challenges and demands for technology development to maximize the value of the horizontal wellbores and achieve well-planned targets and performance levels.
Drilling tools and technology in general have dramatically evolved during the last decade from simple, positive displacement motors to more sophisticated, rotary-steerable systems in different combinations and technology implementations.
Revolutionary drilling tools have been developed in the last few years, along with nearly every technology and technique related to horizontal and multilateral wells drilling surveying and evaluating, including MLWD, telemetry systems, data acquisition and data transmission speed and bandwidth, and horizontal and extended reach wells coring technologies.
Interpretation and integration techniques and workflows are closely following the rapid development of horizontal and multilateral drilling and data acquisition technology. Real-time operations, well placement/geosteering, and drilling geomechanics together with specific processing, qualitative and quantitative formation evaluation, borehole geology, and advanced image integration techniques are emerging and maturing in the industry worldwide.
The constant development and improvement in the modern approach in bit selection and design, as well as development and advances in mud fluids system is observed around the globe in response to the challenges in drilling horizontal and multilateral wells.
The growing use of short radius drilling techniques, required to achieve higher dogleg severity in a short TVD distance, is also a current industry trend along with underbalanced drilling, when the conventional mud system can cause severe reservoir damage and lead to more loses than gains.
A wide variety of completion methods, technologies, and equipment are currently used for specific applications driven by the well conditions and functionality required. Any particular completion solution is designed in fit-to-purpose way. Thus, completion systems can vary from simple to more technically advanced.
The following key technologies and completion methods represent modern approaches in completions of horizontal, multilateral, and extended reach wells:
The volume of horizontal well fracturing is currently growing tremendously in Russia as well as within the industry worldwide. The variety of different well conditions, well design options, and operational constraints, such as cementing, milling, cleaning, and wellbore ID, require specifically addressed technology. Modern technological portfolios of multistage fracturing cover most of the applications.
There is a variety of multilateral completions. The selection of the particular system begins with the definition of TAML level, which is assigned to geological and technological requirements to production (upper) completion selection, which is also dictated by geological and technological requirements, and functional needs.
To obtain the optimal dataset allowing reliable downhole control processes at any stage of well life, the downhole monitoring systems, such as fiber optic telemetry systems and alternatives, need to be designed and optimized to address this challenge.
Any option described above individually or jointly can include or be upgraded to nearly full-control, interventionless completion, designated as "smart completion systems."
Success of the completion stage in a well construction process depends on a wellbore preparation and the quality of wellbore fluid. Modern completion equipment requires certain clean, washing ability and other characteristics of the wellbore fluid during preparation, running and setting. Completion fluids are addressed to this challenge.
Well design and completions for horizontal and multilateral wells become more and more complicated.
In order to achieve higher production rates, a vital need has emerged for understanding geology, formation properties, selecting optimal well completion, and implementing advanced technologies in horizontal and multilateral wells.
This section covers current issues and technology approaches to horizontal wells advanced testing and dynamic surveillance techniques.
The section topic are: