In the current oil price environment, all new developments are pursued with minimum capital investment and lowest possible operating cost to improve project economics. Projects that do not meet the economic criteria have to be shelved or deferred to a later date. This was the case for a green gas field development in Peninsular Malaysia which was shelved in 2016, resulting in an added preservation requirement for the newly-fabricated topside facilities and pipelines. The increase in project cost due to the preservation requirements, eroded the project economics which necessitates all possible cost reductions in order to make the overall project economically viable.

One possible area for cost reduction is the sand management. Sand production is expected from the shallower I-group reservoirs targeted in the gas development. This is based on well test results conducted in one of the appraisal wells which is further supported by a sand production prediction (SPP) study. Based on the available Particle Size Distribution (PSD) data from a Laser Particle Sieve Analysis (LPSA), the reservoir particle D50 is about 55µm and has more than 40% fines content. Due to the multilayer reservoir targets, cased hole development were designed for the well hence Internal Gravel pack (IGP) is selected as the downhole sand exclusion method.

Over the life of the field, fines production is anticipated due to the high fines content of the reservoir. There is also risk of IGP failure which could result in eroded tubings, flowlines and headers. This would be catasthropic for the green field due to its unmanned operation philosophy. Moreover, during the facilities detailed design, the provision for surface desander was eliminated to make way for a compact platform design.

This paper will describe the methodology used to assess the severity of sand production to the surface facilities using the well and reservoir parameters. The assessment results provide the basis for the field integrated sand management philosophy, which helps management to make an informed decision to eliminate the real time sand monitoring and control system requirements and also eliminate the need for platform deck extension for desander installation requirement.

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