The giant Shushufindi (SSFD) field, located in the Amazon basin of Ecuador is a mature field that has been producing since 1972. In December 2011, management of the field was awarded to Consorcio Shushufindi (CSSFD) by PetroAmazonas EP (PAM) with the signature of a 15 year integrated services contract. At the time of contract signature, field production was 45,000 BOPD from 90 wells. Since then, 109 new wells and 91workovers have been completed by CSSFD, raising production to 90,000 BOPD in early 2016.

Along with the implementation of a field development plan, key elements, such as the deployment of new processes, operating practices, and technologies, to address deferred production were identified. Production challenges in SSFD were increasing in frequency and severity, and the need for frequent well reviews became a priority.

The processes implemented targeted the reduction of production deferment due to well downhole failures by identifying the root cause, planning for remedial actions, and following-up on execution. An initial field-wide evaluation of production deferment causes allowed implementing the process at a large scale rather than on a well-by-well basis. Project management was applied to prioritize actions and materialize the savings in production and costs.

To accelerate implementation, a pragmatic approach based on experience was initially used, after which the process became fully defined and documented. Main areas tackled were

  • Electrical submersible pump (ESP) design and new technologies

  • Tubing design and selection

  • Production chemistry program adjustments

  • Well monitoring and surveillance using operation support centers (OSC)

  • Well servicing (pulling) operational efficiency

The improvements were followed by the collection and analysis of field data and results for a period of 5 years and have resulted in an increase in average well run life of over 1 year. Production deferment related to well failure was also decreased from 4.7% to 1.6% of total production, increasing the oil recovery by 1.3 million STBO.

The evaluation of the improvements was done over a period of 5 years (January 2012 to November 2016) where the field data was good enough to carry on the analysis.

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