The next generation of Expandable Completions has arrived. This paper describes the evolution of expandable technology aligned to the requirements of an operator in Saudi Arabia. The paper discusses recent single zone sand face completions in Saudi Arabia, which represents the original system design concept for fully compliant Expandable Sand Screens (ESS). The next generation of fully compliant Expandable Completions has been developed to address multi-zone reservoirs, where selective isolation or production provides advantage. The paper will detail the same operator's requirements for this next generation system in relation to an upcoming field development.
The depletion of some Central Arabia fields in Saudi Arabia will depend on the success of horizontal sidetracked wells to drain reserves from a thin oil column. Expandable Sand Screens were selected to provide downhole sand control, due in part to the proven productivity gains achieved with the technology in an offset well in the same area, and the ability to limit water coning through minimising friction pressure loss. A 1000ft, single-zone fully compliant ESS completion was installed in a 6" open hole horizontal side-track drilled from a well which had been previously shut in due to poor productivity and high water cut. The paper details the completion objectives, design philosophy, well construction aspects, and installation and production results. Analyses of well performance from PLT surveys in another horizontal open hole application of fully compliant ESS in Central Arabia are also presented.
The same operator is now looking to the next generation of Expandable Completions to provide a solution for another upcoming Central Arabia field development project. The field incorporates a sand-bearing reservoir matrix that requires zonal isolation. This next generation system combines slotted and solid expandable technology to deliver a reservoir completion with a combination of open hole production performance and cased hole functionality. It facilitates unparalleled flexibility in reservoir design by allowing sections of blank-pipe to remain unexpanded between zones; this enables integration with conventional variable flow control and intelligent completion equipment and ultimately permits selective isolation & production control. The paper describes the advantages of applying this approach to the field development.