Fiber-optic (FO) -based sensing technologies such as distributed temperature sensing (DTS) or distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) for well surveillance are attractive because they offer a continuous collection of real-time downhole data without the need for well intervention, thus avoiding production deferment. An example is the application of DTS and DAS for gas lift performance monitoring in oil producers by measuring the thermal and acoustic effects from the flow of lift gas through the valves into the production tubing to determine the active, inactive, and possibly leaking valves, and, also, the unloading depth. An anomaly observed in DTS data of a deepwater Gulf of Mexico (GOM) gas lifted oil producer led to a significantly improved interpretation methodology that allows inferring both the lifting depths and the annular-fluid interface(s). These results were confirmed by DAS, by identifying gas flow through a valve in selected acoustic-frequency bands. The new insights have been applied to five wells in the GOM and Southeast Asia.

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