ADNOC onshore's reservoir development strategy has historically been to drill barefoot wells and perform interventions as production deteriorates. Barefoot wells increase flexibility, lower cost, and reduce operational risk, but unbalanced fluids influx, and early water/gas breakthrough may reduce oil recovery. Autonomous Inflow Control Valve (AICV) technology tackles these limitations while eliminating/reducing the associated risks/costs with other inflow control technologies. This paper presents a series of successful pilot workover interventions deployed in the UAE to revive wells and boost recovery.

Successful execution of four UAE onshore assets (two gas shut-off, two water shut-off applications) as part of a pilot to assess and approve the AICV technology initiated a new paradigm in restoring oil recovery and production accessibility of inactive and/or low performing wells. Well selection required screening, robust simulation modelling, and assessments of accessibility and downhole integrity. Stringent reviews of required rig operations, lower completion (LC) designs, and various completion components were conducted. The integrated work between various business unit domains helped create new workflow chains and resulted in the implementation of several best practices in planning, design, execution, and evaluation.

LC configurations were optimized by T&D modelling, time lapsed simulations, and the use of reservoir data obtained during rig interventions. The design challenges encountered with the limitation on number/type of isolation packers, segmentation, type of shoe, use of a light workover rig, risk mitigations, field execution, well flowback, best practices, and lessons learned are all addressed highlighting how a shut-in well was revived, and other wells observed drastic improvements in production performance. The impact this has on lowering carbon emissions and associated costs by reducing the need for electricity for lifting, handling, treatment, storage, disposal of water and potential venting/flaring gas and risky interventions is demonstrated. Standard practices and boundaries were successfully stretched to truly show the value of the AICV technology; more than double the usual operator standard of isolation packers were deployed in one well after thorough planning, risk evaluations, and effective collaboration.

All four wells successfully reached TD without additional complexities or QHSE incidents. Preliminary assessments for the first well, for example, indicated GOR almost halved while enabling oil production at more than double the pre-shut-in rates. Substantial reductions in carbon emissions and costs are expected over the life of the well.

The paper introduces the first ever wells installed with AICVs in the UAE and documents newly established best practices for AICV planning and execution. With hundreds of similar applications globally, the opportunity to revive shut-in wells, reduce unwanted fluid production, and improve ultimate recovery, while lowering costs and carbon emissions is evident. The operator plans to further deploy the AICV across its applicable assets to find hidden barrels from existing reservoirs, and to proactively manage their reservoirs in new wells.

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