ABSTRACT:

This paper considers the physics and solid and fluid mechanics relevant to sanding from weak or very weak sandstones, and then uses this understanding to suggest ways of designing screenless completions to take advantage of these aspects to avoid sand production. This is followed by a description of a scale-dependent approach to sand prediction. This takes grain size and production tunnel diameter into account within the conventional framework of in-situ stress, reservoir pressure and rock strength parameters. The influence of these factors on sand failure over the life-of-reservoir is treated. A brief discussion of the problem of predicting the rate of sand production is also included. The approach is demonstrated with a case study showing how wells in an old gas field, which were shut-in because of sand production, were recompleted using the sand failure prediction and design capabilities of the methodology presented to restore production, sand-free, to former rates.

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