Multilateral technology has for nearly three decades extended the production life of fields in the North Sea by delivering a higher recovery factor supported by the cumulative production of the multiple laterals. Additionally, operators continue to look at methods to reduce the environmental impact of drilling and intervention. Taking advantage of the latest multilateral technology can turn otherwise unviable reservoirs into economically sound targets by achieving a longer field life while minimizing construction costs, risk, and environmental impact.

This paper will focus on mature fields in the region that have used multilateral applications for wells that were reaching the end of their life and have been extended to further economic production.

This paper discusses challenges faced to provide a multilateral solution for drilling new lateral legs in existing wells where there is a lack of available slots to drill new wells. Additionally, discussion will cover completion designs that tie new laterals into existing production casing. The case study will include discussion of workover operations, isolation methods, and lateral creation systems.

The paper focuses on the challenges, solutions, and successful case study of a retrofit multilateral well constructed in the North Sea which extended production life in a mature field by using innovative multilateral re-entry methods. The paper also provides insight as to methodology for continually improving reliability of multilateral installations to maximize efficiencies.

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