Innovative technology and measurement methods along with intelligent production optimization processes are important enablers with regards to intelligent fields and real-time reservoir management. Downhole multiphase flow measurement technologies play a major role in monitoring and optimizing well performance especially wells equipped with advanced well completions such as downhole inflow control devices (ICD) or inflow control valves (ICV)

This paper builds on a pilot installation and comprehensive assessment of the world’s first installation of downhole multiphase flowmeters and optical pressure and temperature sensors in a maximum reservoir contact (MRC) well in Saudi Arabia. One of the major findings from the initial study was that while the optical flowmeter operated successfully at most downhole choke valve settings, it was unable to make sensible readings at specific settings due to excessive acoustic noise. The results from the assessment were instrumental in improving the design of the flowmeter to tolerate higher acoustic noise levels. The initial appraisal and acceptance of this completion technology was closed by having the improved flowmeter manufactured and successfully flow tested under various laboratory conditions. The lessons learned from this experience have provided insights into downhole multiphase flowmeter sensing technologies, its capabilities and limitations. Furthermore, it demonstrates how open collaboration between operator and equipment manufacturer can yield reliable and fit for purpose equipment, a model that can be used to improve other technologies pertaining to intelligent fields and real-time reservoir management.

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