The use of automated workflows for engineering calculations is significantly improving the efficiency of modern well planning systems. Current automated well control solutions are at large limited to single bubble considerations. Transient, multiphase technology has proven to be more accurate and reliable for well control planning, but it has been too complex to automate and integrate into automated engineering systems.
The objective of this work is to improve well control planning efficiency by using an automated workflow that enables integration of transient multiphase technology into modern well-planning systems. The workflow is based around an advanced multiphase engine that covers all relevant physical processes in the wellbore including transient temperature and acceleration. The model has an accurate equations-of-state- (EOS) based pressure-volume-temperature (PVT) model with compositional tracking that, in combination with the transient temperature, can accurately predict the transition from dissolved to free gas - a key parameter in the development of a kick.
The workflow is based on Driller's method and has been automated with a controller network that moves the simulation through the distinct phases of the driller's first circulation without any interaction from the user. High-performance cloud computing ensures the workflow performance.
The drilling industry has focused on risk reductions after the Deepwater Horizon (BSSE 2010) accident. But the well-control risk is still high. In Norway, the reported incidents indicate a flat or increasing trend. Geological uncertainties and inaccurate mud density (static and circulating) have been identified as root causes for the majority of the reported incidents.
Transient multiphase models are reducing well-control risk by accurately modeling downhole variations in fluid pressure as a function of operational mode, fluids, influx type, geometry, water depth, and pressure and temperature conditions. Such models have been regarded as expert tools because of the complexity and numerically demanding simulations.
The automated workflow enables a well control engineer to run accurate multiphase simulations with the same user effort as single bubble kick tolerance tools. In special cases where more sensitivities are required, it is easy to transfer the project to the expert mode - where the automated simulation can be finetuned.