The world's first all-electric intelligent completion installation in a subsea deepwater well, carried out in August 2003, represented the culmination of five years of joint development, testing and onshore field trials by the operator, Petróleo Brasileiro S/A (Petrobras) and completion contractor, Baker Oil Tools. It also illustrates the extent to which new oilfield technologies, particularly those related to subsea/deepwater applications, have historically met with resistance for wide acceptance.
This paper describes the various phases of the five-year project by Petrobras and Baker Oil Tools to qualify the all-electric intelligent well system for deepwater applications. The paper also highlights lessons learned at each phase of the development project and describes how those lessons were applied in ensuing phases to improve the design and functionality of the intelligent completion system. Finally, the paper offers an explanation as to why acceptance for this type of system has been restrained as well as a prognosis for future system development and acceptance.