This paper addresses the hurdles that have prevented the single-trip installation of upper and lower completions in the complex world of subsea and deepwater applications. It examines the processes, technologies, and risk mitigation steps that took a concept from pilot to successful deployment
This paper examines the current practice and rationales that had dictated a near 30-year industry standard methodology. This was not a case of tearing up the rule book, but of re-writing certain chapters. Our study examines the methods used to evaluate risks, mitigate same, test thought processes through to systems integration testing, and ultimately take what was a complete-the-well-on-paper exercise to a complete-the-well-in-practice outcome. The study will look at novel and not-so-novel technologies deployed; why were they chosen and how were they qualified.
Offshore and deepwater activity is returning; cost control, better project management and new technologies have provided a step-change in project economics. Typically, the completion of certain deepwater wells will necessitate the separate deployment of sand face, intermediate and upper completion. But what would result if this could be done in a single trip? In the simplest terms, completing in a single trip reduces the overall completion time by half and more. The case against is well founded; building the case for the change of long-established methods in our industry has never been an easy task. The steps taken to build this case will be examined, how fear of the new was overcome, and, having established proof-of-concept and beyond, taking the project to a fruitful outcome will be explored. However, what will be explored is no silver bullet, has no universal appeal and requires diligence, planning and contingency to drive success. But the prize is there, the risks can be mitigated, and when successful, will deliver an impact on project economics that very few technologies and techniques have delivered on such a scale.