Production forecasting is an important business process requirement for operators to plan production operations, budgets, and future projects. Production forecasting can be performed over different time horizons—monthly, quarterly, yearly, and even longer-term over the life of the field. The tools used also depend on the time frame of the forecasting horizon. Activity planning or, more specifically, integrated activity/field planning is an equally important process that is tightly linked with the production forecasting. This is challenging for several reasons, such as the usage of different tools for planning and production forecasting, the lack of integration between the different systems, and disconnected business processes.
A major offshore operating company (ADMA-OPCO) operates two large fields with ongoing significant brownfield modifications, inspection, surveillance, and drilling activities that impact production. Planning and scheduling these activities, taking into account the production impact and helping to minimize production losses, is a complex task that requires coordination between multiple departments. The operating company recognized significant benefits could be achieved by using integrated activity/field planning to provide an understanding of the impact of activities on the production forecasts.
To achieve this, and with support of the planning group, the operating company developed an application to enable rapid visualization of the production impact resulting from the interaction of all field activities, targeting the following objectives: 1) enhance the accuracy and confidence of Field Sustainable Production Rate (FSPR) estimates and production forecasts, 2) enable workflow consistency and process efficiency, and 3) enable the realization of improved operational efficiencies and FSPRs. This application was developed as a pilot project, working in partnership with a service company. The pilot is now moving ahead to implementation so that end users can begin working with the system to help optimize activities and minimize production downtime. There are plans to further enhance the system by integrating it with engineering/simulation models. Such integration will provide the added benefit of reducing the forecasting horizon over which the system can be used and will be closely linked with production optimization.