Featured this monthProppant InnovationCompanies are trying new ways to produce more oil out of tight formations by altering their completions, and proppant makers are responding with an array of new options.
Guest Editorial – Big Data is a Big Deal The E&P industry must work with "big data" to meet future demand from a growing global population.
Announcement of SPE Board Nominees: 2015 SPE President and Slate of Directors Nominees for the 2015 SPE president and Board of Directors.
Legacy Powerhouse Industry Event OTC Returns for 44th Edition A preview of the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference.
Management The industry’s growth potential today primarily involves unconventional formations, Arctic reserves, and improved recovery from mature fields. The development of these resources requires innovative, cost-effective technologies.
Middle East/North Africa Region Focuses on Tight Gas Results from recent gas exploration and appraisal activities in the Middle East and North Africa indicate that the region holds substantial resources of unconventional gas, especially tight gas.
OTC Spotlight on New Technology Awards Laud Industry Innovators The Offshore Technology Conference announced the winners of its 2013 Spotlight on New Technology Awards.
Turning a Scientific Tool Into an Engineering Machine A collaboration between an industry-backed lab and a maker of high-powered scanning electron microscopes aims to change how rocks are tested by building upon the existing shale knowledge base.
Young Technology A new rotary steerable system can deliver, in a single run, well profiles previously possible only with motors.
Offshore Drilling and Completion
Helio Santos, SPE, President, Safekick LimitedWe all know that things have changed significantly for offshore drilling and completion in the last 3 years. Regulations have been reviewed, and operational procedures and requirements have changed. Requirements for the well design to be reviewed by independent parties and new equipment testing procedures and certification were just a few additions that regulators brought to the scene.
Taking a Fresh View of Riser Margin for Deepwater Wells Potentially Boosts Safety Riser margins were abandoned when fluid columns in risers became too long with increasing water depth accessed when floating drilling units with subsea blowout preventers (BOPs) moved to deep water. Removing risers in disconnect events means wells go underbalanced and rely on BOPs to contain wellbore pressure. With the advent of a simple retrofit dual-gradient [...]
Post-Macondo Drilling in Deepwater Gulf of Mexico Faces Added Challenges The Hadrian-5 prospect in the US Gulf of Mexico was drilled in approximately 7,000 ft of water as one of the first Gulf of Mexico wells drilled after a deepwater moratorium was imposed after the Macondo disaster. This exploration well was permitted under the new regulatory requirements of the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, [...]
First Barents Sea Oilfield Development Emphasizes Oil Spill Preparedness The Goliat field will be the first offshore oil field in the Barents Sea and the world’s northernmost offshore oil field. The field is in the southwestern part of the Barents Sea, close to the coastline in an environmentally sensitive area. The implementation of the Goliat oil spill preparedness plan will introduce new technologies and [...]
Natural Gas Processing and Handling
George Hobbs, SPE, Director, Strategic ChemistryOn the 201st anniversary of the founding of the first commercial gas operation, the Gas, Light and Coke Company (later British Gas), the future for natural gas has never looked better.
Proposed Cluster Liquefied-Natural-Gas Production System Raises Tolerance of CO2 During natural gas liquefaction, CO2 must be removed to prevent icing and plugging in the system. The CO2-removal system may be the most important part of the gas-treatment system. CO2 removal systems require complicated amine contactor and regeneration systems with substantial heat sources. The CO2-tolerant natural-gas-liquefaction system called cluster liquefaction accepts approximately 1% of CO2 for [...]
Floating Compressed-Natural-Gas System Provides Simpler Path to Monetization Monetizing offshore gas by compressing and shipping it in floating compressed-natural-gas (FCNG) carriers is simpler and, in most cases, less expensive than liquefying and shipping it in floating liquefied-natural-gas (FLNG) carriers. Seaborne compressed-natural-gas (CNG) transport requires essentially the same infrastructure as pipeline export, except that the gas is compressed into a ship rather than a [...]
Handling Jurassic Field Sour Gas Creates Challenges Upstream and Downstream Kuwait Oil Company started free gas production from its Jurassic sour-gas field in May 2008 with the commissioning of Early Production Facility (EPF) 50. The field produces sour gas and light crude from a deep high-pressure/high-temperature naturally fractured carbonate reservoir with low permeability and low porosity. The well fluid is characterized by high hydrogen sulfide [...]
High-Pressure / High-Temperature Challenges
Mike Payne, SPE, Senior Advisor, BPHigh-pressure/high-temperature (HP/HT) operations are projected to double in well count over the next 6 years. In addition to this steady increase in activity, the conditions in these extreme wells will also become more severe as well depths, pressures, and temperatures also trend higher.
Offshore HP/HT Gas Well: Drilling and Well Testing With exploration in harsh environments and consequent high-pressure and high-temperature conditions, calculating reservoir properties has become complex and changes in pressure-transient response need to be understood and appreciated by taking appropriate measures. The challenges arising with drilling and testing of high-pressure/high-temperature (HP/HT) gas wells that produce hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and carbon dioxide (CO2) in the [...]
Integrating FPWD Measurements With Managed-Pressure Drilling A high-pressure/high-temperature (HP/HT) exploration field in Block PM on the northern side of the Malay basin, Malaysia, is notorious for a steeply rising pressure ramp, narrow drilling-operation window (only 0.5 to 0.6 lbm/gal in the 14¾ and 9½-in. sections), and interbedded sand/coal and shale formations. Block PM is still in the exploration-and-appraisal stage; therefore, petrophysical [...]
25,000-psi 500°F Packer-Seal System As operators continue to drill into deeper and more-extreme formations, the demand for technologies suited to these environments increases. Much effort has been invested across the industry to overcome obstacles in developing safe and reliable completion tools that are qualified for conditions in excess of 15,000 psi and 450°F. A technological milestone was set recently [...]
History Matching and Forecasting
Alexandre Emerick, SPE, Reservoir Engineer, Petrobras Research CenterReservoir simulation is essential in the decision-making process for the development and management of petroleum reservoirs. A simulation model can predict the reservoir behavior under various operating conditions. Hence, engineers can test different locations for infill-drilling wells or investigate the performance of an enhanced oil recovery process, for example.
First Norne Field Case on History Matching and Recovery Optimization In preparation for the SPE Applied Technology Workshop on Use of 4D-Seismic and Production Data for History Matching and Optimization—Application to Norne (Norway), 14–16 June 2011, a test-case study (Norne E-segment), based on field data of an offshore Norway brownfield, was organized to evaluate and compare mathematical methods for history matching and strategies for optimal production or enhanced oil recovery (EOR). [...]
Combined Uncertainty and History-Matching Study of a Deepwater Turbidite Reservoir The authors used historical field data from a deepwater turbidite reservoir to investigate several history-matching strategies. This project involved an integrated seismic-to-simulation study. The trade-offs between exploring many models vs. calibrating a single model were explored. The scale at which the geologic model was constructed and how the simulation scale could be determined were examined. [...]
Sparse History Matching: Nonlinear-Orthogonal-Matching-Pursuit Algorithm A nonlinear orthogonal-matching pursuit (NOMP) for sparse calibration of reservoir models has been proposed. Sparse calibration is a challenging problem because the unknowns are the nonzero components of the solution and their associated weights. NOMP is a greedy algorithm that, at each iteration, discovers components of the basis functions that are most correlated with the [...]