Abstract

Instrumentation on around 900 artificial-lift system (ALS) wells in the Wafra field allowed remote monitoring, control, and analysis for exceptional management. Having software capable of controlling wells, gathering real-time data, and integration with any database, created another level of effective surveillance. Using real-time optimization simulation software, helped in identifying opportunities, selecting candidates, tracking well behavior, reducing action response duration, reducing number of failures, and saving power cost. This manuscript focuses on the optimization implementation and results verification.

The field development team is divided by reservoir type wherein each engineer is responsible for a set of wells. The wells are artificially lifted using different types of pumps including sucker rod pumps' (SRP), electrical submersible pumps (ESP) and progressive cavity pumps (PCP). The manual process of collecting data is progressively becoming replaced by high tech well instrumentation, which is connected to a private network cloud reaching engineer's desktops. This process has created a collaborative environment consisting of different teams such as asset management and operations engaged in production optimization utilizing the smart software modules. The changes to the well are tracked and diagnosed instantly.

Deploying the digital oil field allowed engineers to instantly access well data which has improved the management process of identifying well issues based on pre-configured and intelligent alarms. It has created short- and long-term plans for production optimization taking into consideration the health and performance of wells and equipment installed in the field. The aim has been to reach and maintain the optimal rate for each well.

Case studies conducted include:

  • Candidate wells for chemical injection based on measuring the difference in flow line pressure from temperature change

  • Unbalanced rod pump wells identified based on the comparison between the measured and calculated counter balance torque

  • Wells with gas interference were highlighted based on continuous dynacard collection

  • Wells with motor overload were diagnosed based on real-time data comparison between the nominal and actual output current

  • Production increase opportunities were identified based on the diagnostics report and analysis report created from the software optimization module

Smart field optimization has been implemented for the first time in the instrumented artificially lifted wells in a partitioned neutral zone between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, whereby the data is being accessed from admin camp, which is an office area outside the field. It has enhanced the collaborative environment between the different teams working in a joint venture allowing engineers to be focused on solving well problems instead of data collection and validation procedures.

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