This paper describes a project initiated by Petrobras to map the steam-front progress in a heavy-oil, steam-assisted field. A new Distributed Temperature Sensing system (DTS) that was provided by a major service/engineering company to monitor the distributed temperature along the well has been deployed in a pilot program in a 4-well field that has three producers and one continuous steam-injection well. The project goals were to obtain:

  • Proof of the performance capabilities of optical-fiber DTS in continuous injection wells for temperatures of approximately 300°C

  • Mapping of the steam front in the reservoir to better understand the steam propagation so that injection efficiency can be increased

  • Prediction and prevention of steam breakthrough.

The pilot forecasts selective injection in two zones using packers for isolation. Since there were no commercial packers available with feedthrough capabilities for deployment of hydraulic lines or optical fiber cables for steam injection, a new solution had to be devised to permit fiber installation at the injector.

Aspects considered for this project included the well selection for the pilot development, the performance capabilities of the system, and the solutions for fiber installation.

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