Since the 1980s, many technical works have focused on improving the ability to detect hydrocarbons inside the riser and safely remove them from the system. This trend gained extra momentum with the advent of systems such as riser-gas handlers and managed-pressure drilling.
Clustered-Development Approach Leads to Better Evaluation of Multiprospect Plays
In the clustered-development approach, the geologic dependence between prospects is combined with the aggregation of prospects to determine the economic viability of a grassroots development offshore.
Reframing Exploration Strategy Optimizes Project Value
The objective of this case study is to describe a specific approach to establishing an exploration strategy at the initial stage on the basis of not only uncertainty reduction, but also early business-case development and maximization of future economic value.
Production and Facilities
Creativity and innovation have long characterized production and facilities, and this year is no exception. The economic challenges of the oil industry clearly have provided a strong stimulus for even more creativity and innovation.
Any entity assessing project viability at any stage of the exploration-to-production life cycle must ensure an evergreen examination of the commercial likelihood on the basis of an ongoing data analysis, refining development synergies coupled with strategic reframing as required.
Waterflooding With Active Injection-Control Devices Improves Oil Recovery
This paper presents the implementation of an approach for improving oil recovery by water-injection optimization using injection-control devices (ICDs) in unconventional reservoirs.
Stochastic Work Flow Bridges Gap Between Subsurface and Surface Disciplines
This paper presents an unbiased stochastic data-driven work flow in which surface and subsurface uncertainties are accounted for and their effects on facilities design and operational decisions are quantified.
Rock-Strength Analysis and Integrated FEA Modeling Optimize Bit Selection
Using log data from offset wells, a bit-selection software based on unconfined compressive strength (UCMPS) calculations has been used to optimize the bit selection for Well X.
Improved Methods Aid Understanding and Mitigation of Stick/Slip Torsional Vibrations
This paper will show how stick/slip vibration distributions can be used to guide drillstring and parameter redesign to mitigate stick/slip in the next well.
Bit Technology and Bottomhole Assemblies
Recent research shows that, in addition to hardness, other rock properties, such as lithology types, heterogeneity, and abrasiveness, have equal importance in bit evaluations. Consequently, the discussion must move from rock-strength analysis to rock-drillability analysis.
Produced water has been an albatross around the neck of operators for a long time. Efforts to solve its challenges have been extensive and continue to evolve. These efforts can have a strong effect on the profitability of an operation.
Inverted-ESP Completion Boosts Oil Rate While Disposing of Produced Water
This paper aims to provide an introduction to the early management of downhole produced water in strong waterdrive reservoirs using inverted electrical-submersible-pump (ESP) technology.
Advanced Electrochemical System Desalts Produced Water, Saves Polymer
This paper presents pilot-testing results and economics from a novel electrochemical desalination technology for enhanced oil recovery (EOR) produced water.
Debottlenecking Through Produced-Water Partial Processing Unlocks Production
New Approach to Capital-Allocation Modeling Improves Performance Assessment
This new conceptual framework for capital-allocation management, known as advanced risk and capital-allocation management (ARCAM), aims to synchronize risk, strategy, and capital decision modeling to provide better visibility of future performance of capital-investment opportunities.
Predictive-Maintenance Approach Uses Machine Learning To Increase Efficiency
This paper focuses on compressor systems associated with major production deferments. An advanced machine-learning approach is presented for determining anomalous behavior to predict a potential trip and probable root cause with sufficient warning to allow for intervention.
Real-Time Data Analytics Allows for Bit-Wear Monitoring and Prediction
Severe bit damage is an issue in West Texas land drilling because of abrasive sand formation and interbedded hard stringers.
Drilling and Completion Fluids
It is no secret that drilling fluid is crucial in drilling operations. The main function of drilling fluids is to transport drill cuttings from the bottom of the hole up to the surface. Drill cuttings then will be separated on the surface before being recycled back for further drilling.
Polymer Replacement for Organophilic Clay Benefits Mineral-Oil-Based Drilling Fluids
Organophilic clays mixed in oil-based drilling fluids (OBDFs) do not exhibit the same viscosity or suspension characteristics as they do in water-based drilling fluids. A new mineral-oil-based drilling fluid (MOBDF) was created by replacing the conventional organophilic clay with a novel polymer.
High-Temperature Water-Based Mud Faces Challenges Offshore Sarawak, Malaysia
The reservoir section of a gas field offshore Sarawak, Malaysia, consists of two massive pinnacle carbonate structures with heterogeneous porosity and permeability and many vugs and faults.
Modified Rectorite Provides Reliable Rheology and Suspendability in Biodiesel-Based Fluids
The use of organophilic clays as additives to provide proper rheological and filtration properties in nonaqueous drilling fluids (NADFs) has long been a topic of study. This paper introduced a modified rectorite designed for biodiesel-based drilling fluid (BBDF).
Horizontal and Complex-Trajectory Wells
With the arrival and development of rotary steerable systems in the late 1990s, the industry thought that drilling a perfectly smooth and controlled trajectory would not be an issue. Two decades later, we’re still talking about wellbore quality, especially with long and complex horizontal wells.
Proposed Steering Mechanism Reduces Tortuosity in Horizontal Wells
This paper describes a new approach to evaluating the effectiveness of the rotary-steerable-system (RSS) steering mechanism on wellbore tortuosity in horizontal wells.
Cuttings-Lag Distribution in Directional Wells Affects Depth Resolution of Mud Logging
This paper presents an approach to modeling the cuttings-lag-depth distribution caused by the dispersion of cuttings-transport velocity in directional drilling.
Multiphase-Flow Simulation Helps Find Optimal Lateral Length for Best Production
This paper demonstrates a work flow to determine optimal lateral lengths and trajectories in the Midland Basin by studying the effect of the lateral length and trajectory on well production.
Water-Injection Techniques Increase Recovery in Conventional Gas Reservoirs
This paper evaluates the incremental benefit of water injection in a conventional gas reservoir when compared with gas compression.
Gas Production Technology
Does better data lead to better outcomes for one or even for all? High-quality data have become a resource in themselves, to be traded and leveraged for personal gain.
Hydrocarbon-Gas Cycling Improves Recovery in the Arun Gas Field
In this paper, past gas-cycling operations were examined to identify subsurface implications and effects on operability aspects for the Arun giant gas field offshore Indonesia in the North Sumatra Basin.
Reynolds Number Is Important in Understanding Wax Deposition
Comprehension of the mechanisms that influence wax deposition in oil-production systems has not yet been achieved fully. This paper investigates the influence of the Reynolds number on wax deposition.
Flow Regime Affects Erosion Prediction in Multiphase Flow
Erosion caused by fine solid particles presents one of the greatest threats to oil and gas flow assurance, consequently affecting material selection and wall-thickness design.
Offshore Production and Flow Assurance
Offshore production assurance continues to drive new production technology applications and approaches. The three papers highlighted here focus on developing analytical tools and performing root-cause analyses while providing safe, cost-effective, and reliable operations.
Root-Cause Analysis of Offshore Pipeline Failures
This paper evaluates potential causes of failure for nine pipelines operating in shallow waters (8 to 14 m) in the Gulf of Guinea. The authors develop an analytical method to identify root causes and provide recommendations for pipeline design and placement.
Huff ’n’ Puff Gas-Injection Pilot Improves Oil Recovery in the Eagle Ford
The Eagle Ford formation has produced approximately 2 billion bbl of oil during the last 7 years, yet its potential may be even greater. Using improved oil-recovery (IOR) methods could result in billions of additional barrels of production.
New-Frontier Reservoirs II
With low primary-recovery rates in unconventional reservoirs and the longer-term development prospects for EOR applications on a fieldwide scale, the potential for accelerated completion optimization in new wells and production-enhancement treatments in existing wells is substantial.
Small-Field Approach Holds Promise for Operators in Southeast Asia
This paper shows how a new approach to small fields could unlock more than twice the net present value (NPV) of larger conventional fields in Southeast Asia at a similar level of capital expenditure (CAPEX).
Machine Learning Overcomes Challenges of Selecting Locations for Infill Wells
The results of numerical simulations for the Lost Hills field were not successful because of the special characteristics of its diatomite reservoirs—low permeability but high porosity, weak rock strength, and strong imbibition.
Section-Based Approach Optimizes Unconventional-Reservoir-Fracture Spacing
In this paper, the authors consider the development plan of shale gas or tight oil with multiple multistage fractured laterals in a large square drainage area that they call a “section” (usually 640 acres in the US).
Soaking Flowback With Surfactant Improves Oil Recovery in Unconventional Reservoirs
This paper evaluates the ability of different groups of surfactants to improve oil recovery in unconventional liquid reservoirs (ULRs) by experimentally simulating the fracture treatment to represent surfactant imbibition in a ULR core fracture during a soaking flowback.
Coupled Capillary-Pressure and Three-Phase Flash Models Simulate Liquid Blockage
This paper presents a new approach for more-accurate modeling of liquid blockage in tight oil and gas reservoirs and investigates the use of solvents for blockage removal.
Simulation Algorithm Benefits by Connecting Geostatistics With Unsupervised Learning
A new geostatistics modeling methodology that connects geostatistics and machine-learning methodologies, uses nonlinear topological mapping to reduce the original high-dimensional data space, and uses unsupervised-learning algorithms to bypass problems with supervised-learning algorithms.
New Method for Predicting Production Boosts Accuracy for Carbonate Reservoirs
This paper proposes a new method of economic prediction on the basis of expert library and oilfield databases. The method takes into account geological factors and the effect of production factors on the economic prediction.
Hybrid Sand-Consolidation Fluid Offers Versatility in Treatment of Shallow Reservoirs
In this paper, a new type of sand-consolidation low-viscous binding material, based on a combination of inorganic and organic components, is presented.
Ceramic Sand Screens Applied in Maturing Oil Field Offshore Malaysia
This paper presents the first successful application of ceramic sand screens offshore Malaysia. Ceramic sand screens were considered as a remedial sand-control method because of their superior durability and resistance compared with metallic sand screens.
Simulation of Sand Production Caused by Water-Hammer Events
This paper proposes a new work flow to simulate water-hammer events, the resulting wellbore failure, and sand production in water injectors.
Petroleum Data Analytics
Expectations from data analytics in the upstream sector continue to evolve. Although the number and diversity of applications continue to increase, the adoption at the assetwide level faces well-known barriers and challenges.
Face-Detection Algorithm Handles Big Data To Help Identify Candidates for Restimulation
This paper demonstrates the viability of a production-data-classification approach adapted from real-time face detection for identifying restimulation candidates.
Field Development Projects
Recent advances in field development are not based on specific technical breakthroughs (although shale oil and gas and deep oil owe a lot to those) but on economic models and scenarios run at the very beginning, before any dollar is invested.
Sand Management and Sand Control
On the technology side, regardless of the oil price, demand persists for cost-saving and value-adding innovations and emerging technologies to bridge gaps in the existing technology portfolio for sand management and control.
Data-Analytics Method Helps Engineers Optimize Well Placement Under Uncertainty
Well-placement optimization is one of the more challenging problems in the oil and gas industry. Although several optimization methods have been proposed, the most-used approach remains that of manual optimization by reservoir engineers.
Reservoir Performance and Monitoring
If the industry until recently was lamenting that a global upstream investment slump caused a focus on incremental technology improvements, now a looming oil-supply shortage has reignited discussions about how innovation, digital technologies, and collaborations can accelerate future major projects.
The last 3 years have seen an unprecedented increase in paraffin-related challenges. The featured papers give some insights into the work under way at some companies to elucidate the structure performance relationships between inhibitors and crude oils containing these higher paraffinic species.
Drilling Systems Automation and Management
Signs of maturity in drilling systems automation are evident in the success stories filtering out of technical conferences and in the attraction of top university talent to an annual, international, drilling-systems-automation contest.
Reassessing Operational Strategies for Wax Management Reduces Expenses
This paper presents a case study that is an example of how reassessing a flow-assurance risk-management strategy for operating assets can identify opportunities for optimization.
Model Helps Guide Choke-Management Strategies Under Constraints
In this paper, the authors propose a coupled wellbore/reservoir model that performs dynamic nodal analysis using integrated models for surface-facilities, wellbore, and reservoir simulators and allows an operator to select choke sizes as a function of time.
Extreme Limited-Entry Perforating Enhances Bakken Completions
This paper presents the evolution of a Bakken advanced completion design with the added enhancement of extreme limited entry (XLE) perforating. With this strategy, an operator has consistently stimulated more than 11 perforation clusters per stage.
Optimizing the Deepwater Completion Process Offshore Israel
This paper describes the successful delivery of one ultrahigh-rate gas well (more than 250 MMscf/D) completed in a significant gas field offshore Israel with 7-in. production tubing and an openhole gravel pack (OHGP).
Probabilistic Drilling-Optimization Index Guides Drillers To Improve Performance
This paper proposes a metric for quantifying drilling efficiency and drilling optimization that is computed by use of a Bayesian network.
New Geosteering Work Flow Integrates Real-Time Measurements With Geomodels
This work presents a systematic geosteering work flow that automatically integrates a priori information and real-time measurements to update geomodels with uncertainties and uses the latest model predictions in a decision-support system (DSS).
Real-Time Advisory System Mitigates Drilling Vibrations in a Lateral Section
A real-time drilling-data analysis and recommendation system that leverages surface drilling data was deployed in a lateral section of a well from an artificial island in Abu Dhabi.
Enhanced-Gel-Strength Concept Optimizes Chemical Use in Pipeline for Waxy Crude
Banyu Urip crude contains 26% wax, which can lead to flow-assurance challenges in a crude pipeline exposed to lower temperatures. Injection of pour-point-depressant (PPD) chemicals has been considered an effective method to ensure flow of moderate waxy crude.
Novel Polymer Modifications Lead to Next-Generation Pour-Point Depressants
Current logistics and pipeline-infrastructure limitations make transportation and production of waxy crude oil challenging, necessitating a step change in the chemistry required to mitigate crude-oil-composition issues.
Lessons From 10 Years of Monitoring With Chemical Inflow Tracers
Initial development of inflow tracers was designed to provide qualitative information about the location of water breakthrough in production wells. The proof of concept and application for water detection initiated the development of oil tracers for oil-inflow monitoring.
Knudsen-Like Scaling May Be Inappropriate for Gas Shales
The author writes that the generally accepted Knudsen diffusion in shales is based on a mistranslation of the flow physics and may give theoretically unsound predictions of the increased permeability of shales to gas flow.
Hardware innovation will continue to occur, but data analytics, multivariate modeling, and process optimization are emerging as new contributors to completion success.
Reservoir-Surveillance Data Creates Value in Fractured-Carbonate Applications
The objective of this paper is to illustrate a methodology for identifying the value of information (VOI) in reservoir management—in particular, for deriving the conditional probabilities of success when new and imperfect data are acquired.
Pulsed-Neutron Comparison of Open- and Casedhole Wells: An Alaskan Case Study
This paper compares the results of gas identification and lithology identification using pulsed-neutron spectroscopy in openhole and casedhole environments.
New Automated Work Flows Enhance Formation Evaluation
This paper bridges the gap between operational petrophysicists and FTS specialists, introducing an automated work flow by which petrophysicists can conduct FTS jobs.
Strengths and Weaknesses Guide Choice of Brazilian Subsea-Development Options
The paper provides a fast-track approach to perform screening assessment of multiple subsea concepts.
Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Support Marine Mining
Technologies are being developed that have the potential to support marine mining in all stages from prospection to decommissioning. These developments will likely have substantial influence in the oil and gas industry, itself searching for ways to maximize exploitation of assets.
Shift-Work Fatigue in the Petroleum Industry: A Proactive Countermeasure Using Light Cues
This paper presents a scientific method for reducing fatigue risks in oil and gas organizations that operate a slowly rotating shift schedule.
Better Safety Performance Measures Can Lead to Change by Improving Conversations
This paper examines the use of injury rates as a key performance indicator (KPI). It argues that, as a KPI, injury-frequency rate is no longer a valid measure.</p>
Analysis of Environmental Aspects of Exploiting Unconventional Reservoirs
This paper presents an analysis of the environmental aspects of the exploitation of unconventional reservoirs in order to evaluate the risk of the activity.
Community Engagement and Partnership for Successful E&P Operations in Bolivia
Relationships and engagement with communities in direct areas of influence is of paramount importance for successful exploration and production (E&P) operations.
Cybersecurity for Upstream Operations
This paper emphasizes the value gained by investing in cybersecurity for drilling, workover, and completion operations.
Subsea Hardware and Technology
With hard work, the progress outlined in these three papers may help create a better balance between cost, production, and ecological stability in offshore operations. The papers illustrate the interdependence of both technological and environmental systems.
Technical Report Lays Out Path to Zero Harm and Beyond
Getting to Zero and Beyond: The Path Forward, sets the stage for continuing the discussion across the industry of the essential steps the industry must take to sustain zero harm.
Health, Safety, and Environment
Earlier this year, SPE published the technical report “Getting to Zero and Beyond: The Path Forward,” representing the work of hundreds of oil and gas professionals and their thoughts on how we can achieve an injury- and incident-free workplace. The first paper summarizes the report’s findings.
What effects will Industrial Revolution 4.0 have on the upstream oil and gas businesses in general and petrophysics in particular? We should see more intelligence and automation in measurements, processes, work flows, and operations.
Integrated Study Aids Characterization and Modeling of Natural-Fracture Networks
Natural fractures can have a significant effect on fluid flow by creating permeability anisotropy in hydrocarbon reservoirs.
A radical digital revolution is happening all around us (or so we are told). Applying this to reservoir simulation, we apparently need to understand better when and, more importantly, when not to use such technology—to appreciate its bounds, its limitations, its range of validity, and so on.
Reservoir-Modeling Work Flow Introduces Structural Features Without Regridding
This paper proposes a novel work flow for structural-features modeling that allows the introduction of faults and other structural and nonstructural features to any simulation grid without modification.
Saturation Modeling Under a Complex Fluid-Fill History: Drainage and Imbibition
This paper presents a saturation-modeling approach for fields and reservoirs with complex hydrocarbon-charging histories. The model resolves saturation-height functions for the primary-drainage, imbibition, and secondary-drainage equilibriums.
One of the more exciting aspects of artificial lift is the constant influx of new technologies and new ideas that the discipline invites. Inventors appear to be regularly developing “the next new thing” in artificial lift.
Effect of R Ratio on Performance of Injection-Pressure-Operated Gas-Lift Valves
This paper describes the consequences of using an assumed R ratio in a gas-lift design that is not the same as the actual R ratio of the valve.
Artificial-Sump-Pumping System Improves Production in Unconventional Oil Wells
This paper presents a comparison of conventional ESP methods and artificial-sump systems for which free gas and gas slugs are a challenge.
Rod-Pump Optimization: Big Data Helps Accelerate and Improve Operations
This paper presents how a US onshore operator took a three-step approach to optimize more than 100 rod-pump wells. The approach involved data consolidation, automated work flows, and interactive data visualization.
Unlocking Egypt’s Unconventional-Resource Potential
The Apollonia tight-gas chalk play is located in the Abu Gharadig Basin in the Western Desert of Egypt. This has long been ignored as a gas play in the overburden, while the Jurassic and Cretaceous oil fields deeper in the basin have been explored and developed.
New-Frontier Reservoirs I
Recently, a lot of discussion has revolved around the benefits of multilaterals in unconventional reservoirs, but is it truly the next breakthrough for the industry, or is it all hype?
Coalbed Methane Prospects in Indonesia
This paper reviews the efforts to exploit CBM resources in Indonesia, the challenges these efforts have faced, and possible solutions that can make operations more efficient and profitable.
Coalbed Methane Development in China: Challenges and Opportunities
This paper presents a literature review to determine the engineering challenges and opportunities presented by CBM production in China.
In my previous features, I discussed the challenges facing carbon dioxide (CO2), both technical and economic. By far the biggest use of CO2 is in enhanced oil recovery (EOR). In this feature, the focus is on overcoming the biggest challenges facing CO2 EOR—gravity override and mobility.
CO2-Foam Field Pilot Test in a Sandstone Reservoir
This paper presents an analysis of a CO2-foam-injection pilot in the Salt Creek Field, Natrona County, Wyoming.
Integrated CO2-Foam Pilot in a Heterogeneous Carbonate Field
A carbon-dioxide (CO2) -foam enhanced-oil-recovery (EOR) pilot research program has been initiated to advance the technology of CO2 foam for mobility control in a heterogeneous carbonate reservoir.
Foaming Behavior of CO2-Soluble, Viscoelastic Surfactant
Aqueous foam has been demonstrated to have promise in conformance-control applications. This paper explores the foaming behavior of a CO2-soluble, cationic, amine-based surfactant.
Underbalanced Drilling With Coiled Tubing in Marginal Shallow Wells
The complete paper describes a recent directional coiled-tubing drilling (DCTD) job completed for an independent operator in the Appalachian Basin.
Isolation Barriers With Coiled Tubing in Plug-and-Abandonment Operations
Plug-and-abandonment (P&A) operations can be expensive, leading to negative net present value. Historically, P&A operations in the North Sea—estimated to hold some 3,000 wells of declining production—were performed with either drilling or workover rigs.
Coiled-Tubing Telemetry Intervention in Shut-In Conditions
When a new horizontal well in Asia was incapable of unassisted flow, coiled tubing (CT) was selected for the perforation and stimulation intervention. Mechanical isolation was required to ensure that the stimulation fluids entered only the new zones.
Experimental Investigation of Fracturing With Propellant in a Large Sandstone Block
This paper describes an experimental study with a new propellant and aims to understand the pattern of fracture creation with these propellants.
If the papers presented at the SPE/ICoTA Coiled Tubing and Well Intervention Conference and Exhibition this March are anything to judge by, then coiled-tubing drilling seems to be regaining some interest in the broader market.
The evolution of horizontal drilling and multistage completions has changed matrix stimulation from the “more acid, better result” belief to effective lateral distribution and deeper penetration with less acid.
Engineering Approach To Designing Fluid Diverters: Jamming and Plugging
Fluids introduced into a reservoir for stimulation typically take the path of least resistance and, therefore, frequently go into areas with open flow paths. In many cases, those areas are not the targets of stimulation.
Advances in Dendritic Acidizing Reveal Light at the End of the Tunnel
Study of Expandable-Tubular Collapse Leads To Risk-Based Strength Development
The objective of this study is to investigate comprehensively the effects of the expansion process on the pipe mechanical properties and collapse performance and to develop a reliable risk-based collapse-strength design for the expandables.
Risk-Based Statistical Approach To Predict Casing Leaks
A probabilistic approach was introduced to improve interpretation of data from electromagnetic corrosion logs. This paper presents a statistical risk-based approach to predicting casing leaks using electromagnetic corrosion logs.
Reliability-Based Casing Design Unlocks Reserves in a High-Pressure Gas Field
This paper presents work performed to characterize the probability of collapse as a function of reservoir-abandonment pressure using reliability-based design (RBD).
CO2 injection is a successful EOR technology that has been deployed extensively in the Permian Basin. Further expansion of CO2 EOR has been limited by the availability of affordable CO2 rather than the existence of suitable target reservoirs. This situation may be about to change.
Qualification of Biopolymer in an Offshore Single-Well Test
A single-well polymer-injection and back-production test has been performed in an oil and gas field offshore Norway. The objective of the test was to verify at field conditions the properties measured in the laboratory for the biopolymer schizophyllan.
Multireservoir, Multinetwork Production Optimization of an Omani Reservoir
In the complete paper, a new, fully coupled implicit tool was used to model an onshore Omani asset with multiple reservoirs, each featuring different fluids and multiple networks.
Horizontal Steam Injectors in the Kern River Field
A horizontal-steam-injection pilot project has been under way for the last 4 years in the Kern River heavy-oil field in the southern San Joaquin Valley of California.
Risk-based design is very important, especially for complex systems, because a deterministic approach may not provide a strong underpinning to the reliability estimation of the downhole tools. We have to reduce the probability of failure.
DeepStar Accomplishments in Continued-Service Realm
Offshore operators must grapple with ways to keep aging floating facilities on station beyond their original design life.
Developing an Influx-Management Envelope for a Deepwater MPD Operation
The influx-management-envelope (IME) concept is an advanced, innovative way to assess influx conditions in managed-pressure-drilling (MPD) operations, offering an improved tool for the decision-making process.
Intelligent Completion in Laterals Becomes a Reality
A producer and a service company have collaborated to develop a downhole system to merge multilateral technology and intelligent completions to create “smart laterals.”
Technology Trends in Evaluating Cement Jobs Using Logging Tools
This paper reviews the technology trends in cement-job evaluation using logging tools and considers the main advantages and concerns associated with each technology.
Continuous Innovation Achieves Better Zonal Isolation in Extended-Reach Wells
Operators at a UAE field experienced several challenges while cementing production sections. A systematic approach was applied that used standard cementing best practices as a starting point.
As I read through the abstracts and papers that have been presented in the past year, I notice several key themes: verification of cement placement, development of new materials as a barrier, development of new additives to improve the cement barrier, and enhancement of existing techniques.
Managed-Pressure Cementing: Successful Deepwater Application
This paper reviews a successful managed-pressure-cementing (MPC) operation and presents findings and lessons learned.
Hybrid Solution to the Grand Challenge of Developing Deepwater Stranded Gas
While the floating liquefied-natural-gas (FLNG) option initially looked promising, high capital expenditure and very high operational expense (OPEX) have limited its potential application, with four potential FLNG projects being canceled in Australasia in the last 2 years.
As the resources that the industry develops become increasingly challenging, access to a broader range of options and new and developing approaches allows more-efficient and -effective recovery.
A Neural-Network Approach for Modeling a Water-Distribution System
The authors present a new data-driven approach to estimate the injection rate in all noninstrumented wells in a large waterflooding operation accurately.
Embedded Discrete Fracture Modeling With Artificial Intelligence in Permian Basin
Current long-reach technology already has a large effect on oil recovery. Many possible improvements, however, remain, and we see new contributions every year.
Organophilic-Clay-Free Invert-Emulsion Fluid Helps Drill Record-Length Well in the UAE
This paper discusses the successful design, laboratory testing, and performance of an innovative, low-solids, organophilic-clay-free invert-emulsion fluid (OCF-IEF) used to drill the reservoir section of an extended-reach-drilling (ERD) well.
Simultaneous Drilling, Completions Concept Hopes To Extend Drilling Distances to 30 km
This paper presents a concept that enables simultaneous drilling and completion, with an aim to extend well reach substantially and with an ultimate objective of constructing 30-km-long production wells.
Hole Cleaning, Torque Management Lead to Longest Extended-Reach Well in Brazil
The Peregrino project, located in the post-salt zone of the Campos Basin, presents immense challenges for drilling extended-reach wells. This paper shares challenges imposed by the well profile and downhole environment on the design and execution phases.
Intelligent Fields Technology
What I find impressive is the number of people who were hiding in normal discipline jobs who are coming out of the closet with their Python scripts. And, it’s working. In many ways, order is coming to the mess, efficiency is coming to tiresome manual activities, and richness is coming to decisions.
First Three-Zone Intelligent Completion in Brazilian Presalt: Challenges and Lessons
Since the first intelligent completion was installed 20 years ago, the systems have become increasingly complex in order to reach productivity and optimization goals, allowing real-time independent monitoring and management of each zone in the well.
Triple-Zone Intelligent Completions Aid Extended Well Tests of Exploratory Wells
This paper describes an extended-well-test campaign using intelligent completions in a presalt reservoir. To understand reservoir behavior during production better, several options were analyzed for the first extended well test.
Comparison of Various Offshore Industrial Gas Technologies
Offshore oil-exploration drilling and testing are key for the production of oil; however, a number of associated challenges, particularly the handling of associated gas, must be overcome.
Offshore Drilling and Completion
As the resources that the industry develops become increasingly challenging, access to a broader range of options and new and developing approaches allows more-efficient and -effective recovery.
Natural Gas Processing and Handling
Despite a dip earlier in the year, natural-gas prices remained steady over 2017, averaging $2.99/million Btu. … Early 2018 has been a different story, however, with natural-gas prices already hitting a couple of peaks (of greater than $5/million Btu according to the Henry Hub Spot Price history).
Natural-Gas-Liquids Recovery—Retrofit Breathes New Life Into Old Scrubber
This paper presents details of the retrofit scrubber design and shows the importance of using high-efficiency separation internals.
Hybrid Solvent Helps Ease Bottlenecking in Natural-Gas Plant
Processing sour natural gas is a challenge. If mercaptans are present in the sour gas, the limited mercaptan-absorption capacity of the well-known alkanolamine solvents can be a problem.
Integrating Managed-Pressure Drilling Into HP/HT-Well Planning
An early commitment to integrate MPD into an HP/HT drilling operation can make MPD more than just an enabling tool and turn it into a performance tool that offers significant operational benefits.
Ultradeep-Field Study: Extreme-Underbalanced HP/HT Coiled-Tubing-Conveyed Perforating
An early commitment to integrate MPD into an HP/HT drilling operation can make MPD more than just an enabling tool and turn it into a performance tool that offers significant operational benefits.
Some technologies important for HP/HT have steadily developed and have seen increased uptake even throughout the downturn. These technologies have the potential to revolutionize the performance and safety of HP/HT drilling operations.
History Matching and Forecasting
One unfortunate consequence of a base-case model, however, is the risk of an anchoring effect, in which case we may underestimate uncertainty. Essentially, the anchoring effect refers to our tendency to rely too heavily on the information offered, introducing a bias in the model-construction process
All-Electric Subsea Well Brings Benefits vs. Traditional Hydraulic Technology
Currently, the state of the art for subsea well control is based on hydraulic technology. Hydraulic fluid is supplied from a host facility to the subsea wells through dedicated tubes within an umbilical and is distributed to the wells.
Successful Recovery and Stimulation in a Long HP/HT Horizontal Well in One Intervention
The case history presented in the complete paper describes the performance of an acid-fracturing intervention in an HP/HT well in which this intervention was the last procedure considered to evaluate the productivity of a Marrat Formation well.
Rapid S-Curve Update Using Ensemble Variance Analysis With Model Validation
In the complete paper, the authors propose a novel method to rapidly update the prediction S-curves given early production data without performing additional simulations or model updates after the data come in.
Enhancing Model Consistency in Ensemble-Based History Matching
The aim of this work is to present the effectiveness of a fully integrated approach for ensemble-based history matching on a complex real-field application.
Ensemble-Based Assisted History Matching With 4D-Seismic Fluid-Front Parameterization
An ensemble-based 4D-seismic history-matching case is presented in the complete paper. Seismic data are reparameterized as distance to a 4D anomaly front and assimilated with production data.
Significant improvements to completions design and manufacturing have been made recently to accommodate long laterals and multiple fracturing or acidizing stages for different reservoir types, lithologies, and conditions.
Fracturing Volcanic Rock in India: Continuous Improvements Over 11 Years
This paper summarizes key engineering discoveries and technical findings observed during the execution of 200 hydraulic-fracturing diagnostic injection tests in the Raageshwari Deep Gas (RDG) Field in the southern Barmer Basin of India.
Well-Placement Timing, Conductivity Loss Affect Production in Multiple-Fracture Wells
This paper describes numerical-simulation results from a three-well pad in a stacked liquids-rich reservoir (containing gas condensates) to understand the interaction between wells and production behavior.
Improved Monitoring System for Heavy-Oil Steam-Assisted-Gravity-Drainage Wells
The complete paper provides an overview of the development of fiber-optic sensing for steam-assisted-gravity-drainage (SAGD) applications, including a review of more than 10 years of work in development and field applications in western Canada.
Implementing an Integrated Production Surveillance and Optimization System
The complete paper describes some of the technical challenges faced in deepwater operations and the methodology adopted for implementing an integrated production surveillance and optimization (IPSO) system to mitigate the risks.
Despite the recent downturn, a significant number of pilot- or demonstration-scale applications of existing technologies to develop new heavy-oil fields or new technologies to develop existing fields have been reported over the past year.
Integrated Surveillance Offshore Turkmenistan
The complete paper describes a work flow in which wells and production networks in the Cheleken Block offshore Turkmenistan are automatically modeled daily with steady-state and transient tools and ultimately analyzed by the Cheleken Block Central Data Gathering System.
Cyclic Steam Stimulation Results in High Water Retention for Kuwaiti Heavy-Oil Field
Cyclic steam stimulation (CSS) is one of the principal enhanced-oil-recovery methods for heavy oil. CSS was performed in some of the wells of a heavy-oil field in Kuwait. Multiple cycles were applied in these wells. However, the total water produced in each cycle was much less than expected.
Chemical Stimulation at a Heavy-Oil Field: Key Considerations, Work Flow, and Results
This paper presents the planning and execution of a matrix-stimulation pilot project in the heavy-oil Chichimene Field in Colombia.
In the onshore world, one of the big advances for addressing increased sampling requirements has been to go to 24-hour shooting with continuous recording of simultaneously sweeping vibrators. This has been enabled by innovations in both acquisition and processing.
Doctrines vs. Realities in Reservoir Engineering
The appreciation of empirical realities permits the improvement of commercial depletion planning and enables a greater number of projects. This paper reviews the evidence for and against three doctrines in current use to develop depletion plans.
Acquisition With Autonomous Marine Vehicles: Field Test
The feasibility test conducted offshore Abu Dhabi demonstrated the successful and safe deployment, seismic-data acquisition, and retrieval capabilities of the AMV and 3D sensor array.
Advances in 4D Seismic and Geophysical Monitoring of Deepwater Fields
Integrated surveillance is critical for understanding reservoir dynamics and improving field management. A key component of the surveillance is areal monitoring of subsurface changes by use of time-lapse geophysical surveys such as 4D seismic.
Unconventional-Reservoir Characterization With Azimuthal Seismic Diffraction Imaging
The complete paper proposes an azimuthal plane-wave-destruction (AzPWD) seismic-diffraction-imaging work flow to efficiently emphasize small-scale features associated with subsurface discontinuities such as faults, channel edges, and fracture swarms.
There are two ongoing trends in the industry. The first is an increasing wave of digitization. Second, piggybacking on the increased access to sensor and equipment data, analytics and artificial intelligence are on an exponential rise in the industry.
Closed-Loop Drilling Offers Advantages in Process Safety and Cost Savings
This paper details the operational effects of closed-loop drilling to demonstrate its ability to yield operational-process-safety improvements and cost savings over conventional methods.
Challenges and Lessons of Implementing a Real-Time Drilling Advisory System
This paper discusses the technical challenges related to implementing a rigsite, real-time drilling advisory system and current solutions to these challenges.
Future Workforce Education Through Big-Data Analysis for Drilling Optimization
An operator partnered with the drilling-automation research group at The University of Texas at Austin to develop a work flow for big-data analysis and visualization. The objectives were to maximize the value derived from data, establish an analysis toolkit, and train students on data analytics.
Welcome to the Offshore Facilities feature in this month’s JPT. The three papers featured in this section were selected out of 141 submitted to SPE covering various elements of offshore facilities design, construction, installation, operation, and inspection.
Turritella FPSO—Design and Fabrication of the World’s Deepest Producing Unit
The Turritella FPSO (Fig. 1 above) is the deepest floating production system in the world and presented many challenges to successful execution of the surface host facilities.
Field Trials Help Boost Processing Capacity of Offshore Facility Above Nameplate Limit
The Constitution spar in the Gulf of Mexico has an original nameplate separation capacity of 70,000 BOPD and 200 MMscf/D of gas. Production potential from future developments is expected to exceed this limit.
The papers selected for this issue cover advances and opportunities in well testing. They also apply reservoir fundamentals as well as sound engineering judgment, using quantity but also quality data sets from conventional and unconventional assets.
Well-Performance Study Integrates Empirical Time/Rate and Time/Rate/Pressure Analysis
The purpose of the complete paper is to create a performance-based reservoir characterization by use of production data (measured rates and pressures) from a selected gas-condensate region within the Eagle Ford Shale.
Catalog of Well-Test Responses in a Fluvial Reservoir System
The complete paper aims at a better understanding of the effect of channel content in complex fluvial channel systems on well-test-derivative responses.
Better Permeability Estimation From Wireline Formation Testing
The complete paper presents different methods of using pressure-transient data from WFTs; many of these methods are summarized here.
Maintaining Injectivity of Disposal Wells: From Water Quality to Formation Permeability
An extensive laboratory study was carried out with two objectives: to evaluate the effect of water quality on injectivity of disposal wells with reservoir core plugs and to restore injectivity of damaged wells.
Coreflooding is one of the principal tools through which we qualify drilling and completion fluids and assess the potential for formation damage, but is it relevant? By “relevant,” I mean does it give an accurate portrayal of the likely performance of the selected fluids.
Drilling-Fluid Behavior During Reservoir-Formation Drilling and Completion
A reservoir-conditions coreflood study was undertaken to assist with design of drilling and completion fluids for a Norwegian field. Multiple fluids were tested, and the lowest permeability alterations did not correlate with the lowest drilling-fluid-filtrate-loss volumes.
Modeling of Production Decline Caused by Fines Migration in Deepwater Reservoirs
The complete paper presents a numerical work flow to simulate the effect of flow-induced fines migration on production decline over time in deepwater reservoirs.
Optical Sensors Monitor Vulnerable Top Sections of Flexible Risers
The integrity management of flexible pipes used in subsea production plays a major role in maximizing the availability of the production systems while minimizing safety and environmental risks.
Drilling Technology and Rigs
Phrases such as “dawn of the new age of the oil and gas industry,” and “the fourth industrial revolution” echoed through halls of SPE events in 2017 and into the new year, with rapid advancements in big data management, digital connectivity, and high-performance computing.
A New Three-Phase Microemulsion Relative Permeability Model
The complete paper presents a new three-phase relative permeability model for use in chemical-flooding simulators.
A Review of Improved-Oil-Recovery Methods in North American Unconventional Reservoirs
In the complete paper, three stages of review have been combined to find out the applicability of the most-feasible improved-oil-recovery (IOR) methods in North American unconventional reservoirs.
Estimation of Flow and Hysteresis Parameters Applicable to WAG Experiments
In the complete paper, a new assessment of the WAG-hysteresis model, which was developed originally for water-wet conditions, was carried out by automatic history matching of two coreflood experiments in water-wet and mixed-wet conditions.
Novel Brownfield-Rejuvenation Approach Uses Near-Wellbore-Saturation Monitoring
Fields in the Upper Assam-Arakan Basin have been studied intensely to find prospective sweet spots, perforation intervals for new wells, and potential workover candidates. These forecasts, guided only by dynamic-numerical-model results, have had mixed results when implemented in the field.
EOR Performance and Modeling
Progress in chemical EOR, from polymer to alkaline/surfactant/polymer, has been significant. Not only are there new chemicals with improved recovery capabilities, but also the cost of the chemicals is being reduced continuously. All those factors led to more operators using chemical EOR.
Integrated Water-Injection Analysis Uses Salinity as Tracer in Giant Brownfield
In this paper, an integrated work flow is proposed for brownfields where oil production is driven mainly by water injection. Produced-water salinity plays a key role, acting as a natural tracer and, thus, helping avoid additional costs for new data acquisition.
Data-Driven Technologies Accelerate Planning for Mature-Field Rejuvenation
This paper presents a data-driven technology and associated work flow for fast identification of field-development opportunities in mature oil fields that accelerates subsurface field-development planning and reduces the time requirement from months to weeks.
Design and Surveillance Tools Help Lower Integrity Risks for High-Temperature Wells
Decommissioning Optimization in a Multioperator Landscape
The optimization model presented in the complete paper is the first multioperator offshore network-optimization model that considers decommissioning in the Netherlands.
Well Integrity and Well Control
Nonaqueous drilling fluids have been used extensively by the industry, particularly in complex drilling scenarios. They carry some concerns, however, with implications for well integrity.
Decommissioning and Abandonment
The supply chain is now actively working to develop low-cost solutions and is gaining valuable experience through recent projects (as documented in many recent SPE papers). Owners need to engage the supply chain early with the relevant asset data for planning and execution of decommissioning.
Reducing Costs of Well Plugging and Abandonment While Verifying Risk
The complete paper describes how various P&A designs can be compared by use of a risk methodology that takes account of degradation mechanisms, potential flow rates, and the effect on the environment.
Multiwell Deployment of a New Abandonment System
A new downhole-tool-based abandonment system was developed and deployed successfully on four wells for a major operator on a field in the North Sea.
Use of Managed-Pressure Drilling Requires Adjustments To Bridge Gap to Well Control
Managed-pressure drilling (MPD) challenges the conventional drilling paradigm, along with drilling-contractor and operator policies and standards. Conventional drilling practices for connections, flow checks, tripping, and well control have been long understood and standardized.
Pressure Measurements Plus Simulation Help Differentiate Between Downhole Events
In this study, pressure-while-drilling technologies are combined with software simulations to differentiate drilling-fluid thermal expansion, wellbore ballooning, and formation influx during riserless drilling operations.
Mature Fields and Well Revitalization
There is a growing awareness that maximizing field production involves not only having a clear understanding of subsurface intricacies but also ensuring that existing surface facilities are performing at their best to handle production in an environmentally safe manner.
Integrating Technology and Organizational Alignment for a Portfolio Implementation
One E&P company has found that implementing and sustaining a portfolio process require technical solutions and application of best practices for three critical elements: production forecasting, project modeling and economic evaluation, and portfolio management and decision making.
A More-Holistic Approach to Oilfield Technology Development
a holistic view of technology maturation that addresses both technical and nontechnical risks. The definition of success is expanded to include the establishment of successful, commercially viable, and sustainable solutions that meet end-user needs and requirements.
Production Optimization in Waterfloods: A New Approach to Interwell-Connectivity Modeling
In the complete paper, the authors present a novel methodology to model interwell connectivity in mature waterfloods and achieve an improved reservoir-energy distribution and sweep pattern to maximize production performance by adjusting injection and production strategy on the well-control level.
The papers highlighted in this article cover technical assessment of unconventional resource plays, portfolio optimization, and technology development, all very relevant in today’s environment.
Digitalization of Oil and Gas Facilities Reduces Cost and Improves Maintenance Operations
The digitalization of oil and gas facilities is becoming a new technical arena. Effective solutions can be used to convert data into information and knowledge, which can then be used to improve maintenance operations.
Eliminate Decision Bias in Facilities Planning
The complete paper holds that traditional facilities-planning methodologies, heavily based on design-basis documents and biased toward the most-conservative conditions, fail to recognize the entirety of operational conditions throughout the oilfield life cycle.
Bit Technology and Bottomhole Assemblies
Bottomhole assemblies (BHAs), as part of the drilling system, have dominating effects on the functionality and effectiveness of other system components. BHA design, usage, and monitoring must promote drilling-system compatibility, efficiency, and reliability.
How To Design a Bottomhole-Assembly Rotary-Speed Sweet Spot
Correct placement of the rotary-speed sweet spot of a bottomhole assembly (BHA) provides multiple benefits toward achieving the ultimate goal of drilling to section total depth in a single trip.
Continuous Inclination Measurements and BHA Modeling Help Detect Microdoglegs
Microdoglegs are a natural effect of any vertical or directional well that can explain a wide variety of downhole problems.
Development of Work Flow To Manage Fatigue of Bottomhole Assemblies
A new fatigue-management work flow provides drillers with a tool to simulate and predict the life expectancy of bottomhole assemblies (BHAs) before fatigue causes problems.
Water-Management Experience in a Mature Basin in South Argentina
As part of a comprehensive water-management strategy, this paper describes different process and operational considerations that are the result of 109 years of production in Argentina’s oldest basin.
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