This paper explores the results of one operator's successful implementation of a workflow-based solution for real-time Production Surveillance and Optimization of a large on-shore field in Mexico. We will also examine the fundamental aspects of large-scale workflow delivery in a real-world environment – in this case, involving over 200 wells producing over 200,000 STBD, 50+ users, multiple and often conflicting sources of data (ex. Field vs. SCADA), and integration of production modeling applications from multiple vendors.

The solution combines automation of production modeling workflows, real-time monitoring, Surveillance-by-Exception, and virtual integration of 8 data sources – including real-time, operational, well test, field data, and others – into a single and user-friendly environment. It has been designed with the asset in mind, and has delivered their goals of:

  • Maximize total oil production,

  • Minimize downtime,

  • Virtual Well Flowrate Metering,

  • Well performance overview, providing a single point-of-access to all available information,

  • Standardize engineering processes across the asset, with a heavy emphasis on automation and analytics.

The "intangible" benefits of standardizing processes and providing readily-available access to information are seen as key enablers of the more directly measurable economic benefits.

Prior to the implementation of this solution, it was demonstrated that a significant portion of the asset engineers' time was spent on gathering data from multiple sources. Such activities were manual and error-prone, and led to data duplication, data inaccuracies, and - most importantly - potential for decisions to be made based on incomplete information.

The new solution addresses all of these challenges. Integrated reporting and surveillance-by-exception methods ensure that engineers' time is now focused on engineering issues – not data gathering. "Live links" to all sources ensures that data duplication is no longer an issue. And workflow-based automation have brought the various pre-existing Well, Production Network, and Reservoir modeling tools "Online", so they can be incorporated into daily operational activities and decision-making.

The work is significant as a successful implementation of a large-scale production optimization solution configured to established operator best practices. In an age when operators are faced with declining production rates, smaller discoveries, and a "graying" workforce, such solutions allow operators to do more with less and deliver maximum asset value.

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