Stand alone screens is a sand control technique that has been widely used in the industry for many years. However, some failures have been experienced, raising some concerns about the validity of design and operating procedures. Contrary to gravel pack for which Saucier criteria is well accepted, design criteria for a sand screen only has always been subject to discussion. As it is a simple and cost effective sand control solution, there is still an incentive to develop more robust design and installation rules.

Within Total, a large experience was built in running stand alone screens that allowed optimizing installation practices. In addition, a multi-year laboratory experiments program was run to establish the key parameters in designing stand alone screens. Results of this work are discussed in this paper.

First, an experimental work flow was developed and made reliable after evaluating consistence and repeatability of results.

Then, a sizing criteria based on the retention of the largest sand grains was confirmed to be pertinent.

At last, it was demonstrated the sand size distribution does not have any impact on the sand retention performance of a screen. It cannot be the origin of screen plugging.

This work will set new standards in stand alone screen design in Total.

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