Outflow Control Devices (OCDs) are commonly used in SAGD horizontal injection wells to enhance steam distribution in the well and facilitate uniform heating of the reservoir. Multiple devices are positioned in the tubing string across the horizontal portion of the well to create the desired steam distribution. Most OCD designs incorporate a sliding sleeve which is run in the closed position to allow steam to be circulated through the well. Circulation continues until sufficient injectivity can be achieved, allowing for bullhead steam injection. Post circulation, the sliding sleeves require coiled-tubing intervention to shift the sleeves open, activating the OCD. The subject method applies existing technology from horizontal multistage ball-activated completions to tubing deployed SAGD OCDs to eliminate the requirements for the initial coiled-tubing well intervention.

The ball-activated OCDs are activated by pumping degradable balls from surface to land in the OCD. Once landed, the tubing is pressured up to the predetermined shifting pressure, the sliding sleeve shifts open, and the ball disengages from the seat and continues to the end of the tubing string. This process is repeated with progressively larger balls for all the installed OCDs.

Product qualification has been completed to ensure SAGD service requirements are achieved. This includes ball degradation tests in boiler feed water, flow loop ball shift testing at ambient and elevated temperature, and mechanical tool shifting tests. The results of this testing are shared.

Through the elimination of the coiled-tubing intervention, significant operational efficiencies and cost savings are anticipated. In addition, the expected efficiency gain will minimize well down-time, resulting in less reservoir cooling and impact to production.

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