This paper presents studies performed to optimize the operation of the artificial lifting system, Plunger Lift, in wells producing unconventional oil in the Vaca Muerta Formation, Unconventional Region, YPF S.A., Argentina.

The field has more than 280 wells equipped with Plunger Lift. Most of them are instrumented, and automated, telesupervised.

Despite the level of technology deployed, both in the field and in SCADA systems, the dedication of specialized production engineers was necessary to study the wells on a daily basis and in real time, implementing exception handling, in order to detect early warnings and assess opportunities for optimization.

On the basis of experience in the operation and optimization of this extraction system and the work of multidisciplinary teams, diagnostic and decision making flowcharts were elaborated and then considered as early warning algorithms in SCADA control panels. This paper presents the results of these studies and the benefits obtained.

You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.