Surface deformation measurements have been used for years in oilfields to monitor production, waterflooding, waste injection, steam flooding, and Cyclic Steam Stimulation (CSS). They have been proven to be a very effective way to monitor the field operations and save money for operators wishing to avoid unwanted surface breeches, casing failures and excessive subsidence due to production. This paper demonstrates that more information can be extracted from surface deformation measurements by inverting the surface deformation for the volumetric deformation at the reservoir level, so the areal distribution of volumetric deformation can be identified. First, a poroelastic model is presented to calculate the deformation due to the volumetric change in the reservoir. Then, a linear geophysical model is formulated to invert for the reservoir volumetric deformation from the measured surface deformation (or tilt). Constraints are added into the procedure as necessary to better resolve the inversion problem. After each inversion, the theoretical surface deformation (displacement, tilt, reservoir compaction and volumetric strain) can be calculated from the inverted volumetric deformation distribution which best fits the measured deformation data (or tilt) at the surface. The technique of mapping fluid flow using surface deformation was applied to real data from a cyclic steam injection project.

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