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Reducing Intervention in Subsea Wells With Fiber-Optic Technology

Topics: Offshore

Fiber-optic-system installations have reduced the need for intervention by logging tools and have given crucial insights into wellbore integrity and reservoir production. Consequently, a prime application of fiber technology should be in deepwater fields, where intervention can be prohibitively expensive. The reluctance to incorporate downhole fiber appears to be caused by limitations of technology relating to cables, deployment, acquisition, and interfacing. These barriers are slowly being eliminated, and a small number of subsea wells have now been implemented with in-well fiber.

Introduction

Permanently installed fiber-optic systems have been commercially available in the oil field since the early 1990s, with the bulk of the deployments providing fiber-optic distributed temperature based upon Raman backscattering. This Raman distributed-temperature-sensing (DTS) measurement system provides continuous data along the length of the completion without the need for intervention and without introducing restrictions in the inner diameter of the completion tubulars, restrictions that could impede subsequent wellbore access. Typical DTS spatial resolution is better than one data point per meter, with a temperature resolution of 0.01°C. Applications of the distributed-temperature data have included calculating flow contributions across the sandface, evaluating water-injection profiles, diagnosing the effectiveness of fracture jobs, finding cement tops behind casing, and identifying crossflow between producing zones.

This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper OTC 23929, “Reducing Intervention in Subsea Wells With Fiber-Optic Technology,” by John Lovell, Schlumberger, prepared for the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference, Houston, 6–9 May. The paper has not been peer reviewed. Copyright 2013 Offshore Technology Conference. Reproduced by permission.
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Reducing Intervention in Subsea Wells With Fiber-Optic Technology

01 November 2013

Volume: 65 | Issue: 11

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