This paper discusses a case study of one of the onshore field of ONGC where while processing well fluid, frequent surge has been observed leading to shutdown of the SDVs creating severe operational problems and loss of production. It was imperative to find out the problematic wells/lines located in clusters which contribute for surge formation and mitigation approach with minimum modifications.
A transient complex network of sixty five wells flowing with a different lift mode such as intermittent gas lift, continuous gas lift etc were developed in a dynamic multiphase flow simulator OLGA. Time cycle of each well were introduced for intermittent lift wells. Simulation study reveals pulsating transient trends of liquid flow, pressure which was matched with the real time data of the plant and hence confirms the accuracy of the model. After verifying the results, different scenarios were created to determine the causes of surge formation. After finding the cause, a low cost approach was considered for surge mitigations.
An integrated rigorous simulation was carried out in OLGA, by feeding more than 12,000 data points to obtain model match. Several scenarios were also created such as optimization of lift gas quantity, optimization of elevation and size. Trend obtained after each scenario was pulsating behaviour and it matched with the real time data appearing in the SCADA system of the field. After rigorous simulation with each scenario, it was established that the cause of surge forming wells/pipelines. Once the root cause of surge has been confirmed then quantum of liquid generated due to surge was determined. Adequacy checks of the existing separators were carried out to estimate the handling capacity of the existing separators at prevalent operating condition. After adequacy check it was found that existing separators cannot handle the surge generated in that time interval leading to cross the high-high safety level, resulting closure of shut down valve (SDV). After establishment of root cause of the surge, a low cost solution with small modification in pipelines and control system/valves was adopted to arrest the surges. It was first of its kind simulation carried out for a huge network of wells/ pipelines by feeding more than 12,000 data to analyze the surge formation cause and capture its dynamism owing to wide array of suspected causes. This will help to address the challenges of efficiently reviewing the entire pipeline network while designing new well pad/GGS and will also help to arrest surge by adopting a low cost solution wherever such situation arises.