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SPE Managing Flow Assurance—Enhancing Wells Integrity and Productivity Workshop

27 – 28 January 2015

Abu Dhabi, UAE | Jumeirah Etihad Towers

Technical Agenda

Session 1: Best Practices and Case History in Managing Inorganic Deposits/Scales in the Region

Session Chairs: Gordon Graham, Scaled Solution; Jamal Al Ashhab, ZADCO

Inorganic scale management and control is a strategic issue for oil and gas producing companies.  It represents a significant challenge to production in many fields worldwide and has become an increasing challenge in the region for both mature fields and new field developments. Successful management and control of inorganic scaling in production wells and facilities requires integration of both oilfield chemistry and engineering disciplines. 

This session will highlight the best practices and case histories being implemented and experienced by the national and international operating companies in the region and will look at challenges for new field developments. The session will cover aspects relating to:

  • Chemical deployment methods such as  surface, wellhead, and down hole continuous injection
  • Scale removal; including both mechanical and chemical methods
  • The influence of well completion design on scale deposition and treatment
  • Techno-economic and risk-based analysis process
  • Innovative solutions to scale control
  • New perspectives for scale control and management
  • Emerging chemistries and technologies
  • Innovative developments in scale management
  • Squeeze process, the mechanisms involved, and the various chemical and reservoir factors that control the treatment lifetime

Session 2: Modelling and Prediction

Session Chairs: Satya Putra, Saudi Aramco; Zaharia Cristea, Schlumberger

Modelling and predicting flow assurance risks over the field life is a critical addition to meaningful field development strategies and efficient operational practices. Extreme reservoirs conditions, complex wells and completions, pressure, temperature, flow behaviour and patterns, composition, GOR, water cut, addition of IOR/EOR fluids, are all variables that add to the complexity of flow phenomena in wells and production networks. Superior understanding of these variables behaviour and their flow impairment potential, as well as identification of credible risk mitigation options, are enabled by fit-for-purpose systems modelling and behaviour prediction. Hydraulics and thermal modelling combined with production chemistry allow better understanding and prediction of potential flow assurance problems such as unstable flow or slugging, liquid accumulation, corrosion and erosion, hydrate formation, and paraffin deposition. In this session we shall discuss current concepts and best practices to address flow assurance challenges through flow and chemistry modelling and prediction in wells and pipelines.

Session 3: Oilfield Sampling and Monitoring Techniques

Session Chairs: Alistair Strachan, Baker Hughes; Amir Alwazzan, OneSubsea

The main objective of a sampling programme is to obtain representative and adequate samples of fluids to analyse them in order to determine the fluids’ behaviour under different operating conditions. The acquired information is essential for governing the in-place volumes, recovery factor calculations, reservoir management, and designing and optimisation of production systems.

Sampling operation could turn to be costly and time consuming. Advancements in sampling and analysis technologies proved crucial for safe, reliable and economic production operations. As such, sampling programme must be well designed and prepared to ensure a sussceesful operation and to avoid unpleasent surprises. Resrevoir type, critical factors, methods, techniques, procedures, and lessons learnt must all be considered and reviewed during the preparation process.  Monitoring  the sampling process and laboratory analyses is another key activity to ensure obtaining high quality results and data.

This session will aim to cover the aspects of sampling and monitoring subject.  It will address the latest advancements in HSE procedures, methods, techniques, strategies, tools, deployment procedures, QA/QC procedures, and fluid modelling. This session will also consist of fit-for-purpose sampling programme and case studies.

Session 4: Best Practices and Case Histories in Managing Organic Deposits in the Region

Session Chairs: Catherine Strachan, REDA Oilfield UK Limited; Dalia Abdallah, ADCO

Formation damage, tube plugging, and blocked production equipment are all hazards associated with the deposition of organic material during stimulation and production operations. These organic deposits can be broadly classified as either paraffinic waxes or asphaltenes which occur naturally in crude oils and can deposit throughout the production process due to changes in temperatures, pressures and oil composition e.g. mixing incompatible crudes, miscible hydrocarbon or CO2 flooding or acidizing of the well.
Organic deposits, particularly asphaltenes, are prevalent across this region and the cost implication due to downtime and deferred oil is significant. Remediation options, once the deposits are formed, can be costly due to cleaning and deferred oil, and are often hampered by production operations. Alternative prevention strategies can also be considered which may prove to be a more practical solution.

This session will look at the best practices developed to manage organic deposition, in particular remediation versus preventative strategies through the study of regional case histories.

Session 5: Regional Corrosion Challenges

Session Chairs: Eric MacKay, Institute of Petroleum Engineering, Heriot-Watt University;
Tariq Al Daghar

Corrosion related failures constitute over 25% of failures experienced in the oil and gas industry.
It is apparent that corrosion imposes a significant cost penalty on the choice of material at the design stage and its possible occurrence also has serious safety, environment, and cost implications. For example the annual cost of corrosion to the oil and gas industry in the United States alone is estimated at $27 billion (according to NACE International)

Corrosion of metals in the industry of oil and gas is something that is bound to happen and something that is unavoidable. But measures can be taken to see that this doesn't happen excessively such as:

  1. Design the materials (corrosion resistance materials selection)
  2. Design a barrier between the material and its environment (protective coating, corrosion inhibitor)

Beside general requirement in mechanical basis, fabrication, maintainability, and cost, design of materials for corrosion protection should evaluate corrosively variables as follow but not limited to:

  1. CO₂ content
  2. H₂S content
  3. Oxygen or oxidising agents content
  4. Operating temperature and pressure
  5. Erosion
  6. Organic Acid and Halide

Significant numbers of studies on the corrosion management in oil and gas industry have been carried out. The outcomes of these studies, has provided important practical implications through distinguishing cost effective materials choice and effective preventive and predictive measures to minimise this insidious type of failure.

This session will look at the proper mitigations to prevent/reduce the corrosion challenges.

Session 6: Advances in Technology and Research

Session Chairs: Myles Jordan, Nalco; Timothy Morrow, ExxonMobil

“Recent advances in technologies for scale and corrosion prevention, remediation, and production system surveillance have led to changes in the way the industry designs management programmes for flow assurance related issues.  As oil and gas production systems continue to evolve in complexity, flow assurance technologies will need to evolve to meet the challenges presented.

In this session we will discuss some of the latest advances in flow assurance technology and areas of active research. The break-out session will discuss desired capabilities for future technologies, and ways to promote technology uptake and collaboration between academia and industry.