Wassana oil field is located in the Gulf of Thailand with shallow water depth at approximately 60m. A major challenge is excessive water production which reduces reserves recovery and increases costs associated with produced water handling.
The target reservoir is ~20ft thick with active aquifer support. The low oil/ water mobility ratio due to high oil viscosity (≥ 30cp) risks early water coning and high watercuts. All horizontal wells drilled in the Wassana field during the initial development and the first infill campaign were completed as non-ICD openhole standalone screen. For the second infill campaign, the non-ICD simulation showed water breakthrough occurring at the start of production. Once breakthrough occurs, water production rapidly dominates production prompting premature shut-in of production, leaving much unrecovered oil behind. To overcome this problem, Autonomous Inflow Control Devices (AICDs) were introduced to control the production influx profile across the entire horizontal section to delay water coning and to significantly choke back water production when it occurs.
With intensive pre-drilled AICD modeling using 3D dynamic time lapse simulation, two wells in the second infill campaign were subsequently chosen to be completed with a configuration of zonal AICDs isolated by swell packers. This design enables isolation across horizontal reservoir section with high water production in tandem with compartmentalization across the contrasting permeability region. Once water breakthrough occurs, the unique autonomous ability of the cyclonic AICD is triggered by exploiting the physics of rotational flow of the vortex-inducing pressure drop principle through a restrictive funnel-type flow-path in a tool with no moving parts. The low viscosity of both water and gas phase promotes higher rotational velocity inducing higher pressure drop or back-pressure of inflow vortex breakdown towards the inlet into the tubing flow, thus helping to further reduce the influx contribution of the high water producing sections. Essentially, the higher watercut zones flowing through the device is restricted more rigorously compared to the oil-prone zones.
Both wells were successfully drilled and completed with AICDs in February 2019. Based on actual and early-production history-matched performance, these 2 pilot AICD wells are projecting an improved cumulative oil production gain of up to +7% over 5 years of production. The reduction or delay of water production can benefit the field both in enhancing oil recovery and water handling cost saving.