Worldwide, as conventional oil resources are depleted, beam pumping system is becoming the most common type of artificial lift methods for onshore wells. Production testing of beam pumped wells is an important diagnostic tool to detect potential production problems and for monitoring reservoir performance. In addition, well test data and the Inflow Performance Relationship (IPR) combined with the production data help to design, analyze and optimize the whole well production system. With the growing number of beam pumped wells, the value of such data is increasing over time.
Published literature and field experience show that the traditional well testing methods for beam pumped wells have various limitations such as being hazardous, have a lot of assumptions, provide only a snapshot data and are costly processes. On the other hand, well testing is problematic if the wells are isolated or at a far distance from the field facilities. Also when large population of beam pumping wells are connected to central batteries, it is difficult to determine the daily production of each well or to identify the cause of low production in the battery, as there is not an easy way to identify which well is affected.
This paper will discuss a technology that started to replace traditional well testing facilities or at a minimum a new way to verify individual well performance on a day by day basis. The new method continuously infers the production and calculates the corresponding bottom-hole pressure using a smart rod pump controller system located at the well site by analyzing the downhole pump card data. The basic logical assumptions and methodology of the new method are summarized to give an understanding of how the test is implemented and under what conditions the test will be accurate. Real field data are shown and compared with data acquired by other traditional methods.