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Continuous Seismic Reservoir Monitoring of Thermal Enhanced Oil Recovery

Fig. 1—Aerial photos of the monitoring area. Top: Trenches during installation. Bottom: 4 months later during continuous monitoring.

A reservoir-monitoring system has been installed on a medium-heavy-oil onshore field in the context of redevelopment by gravity-assisted steamflood. The challenge was to monitor the lateral and vertical expansion of the steam chest continuously with seismic reflection. The high sensitivity of the buried acquisition system allows the tracking and monitoring of very small variations of the reservoir’s physical properties in both the spatial and calendar domains. A daily 4D “movie” of the changes allows proposing a scenario that explains the unexpected behavior of the production.

Introduction

The Schoonebeek field is in the northeast of the Netherlands with 1 billion bbl of stock-tank oil initially in place. Between 1948 and 1996, the oil was produced with several small-scale thermal enhanced-oil-recovery pilots with vertical wells. Today, the oil is produced by gravity-assisted steamdrive.

A permanent seismic system including 2D and 3D phases was installed in 2010 to monitor the reservoir’s evolution during steam injection. The monitoring lasted 2 years. During this time, the propagation of the steam plume injected into a horizontal well located between two horizontal producer wells was tracked in order to understand the 4D behavior of the steam and possibly update the dynamic production model.

This article, written by Special Publications Editor Adam Wilson, contains highlights of paper SPE 165428, “Continuous Land Seismic Reservoir Monitoring of Thermal EOR in the Netherlands,” by Julien Cotton, Laurene Michou, and Eric Forgues, CGG, and Kees Hornman, Shell Global Solutions International, prepared for the 2013 SPE Heavy Oil Conference Canada, Calgary, 11–13 June. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
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Continuous Seismic Reservoir Monitoring of Thermal Enhanced Oil Recovery

01 June 2014

Volume: 66 | Issue: 6

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