Calcium carbonate scale impacts oil production in a large number of fields worldwide. This scale is generally managed by acid washing to remove the scale and/or by performing scale inhibition treatments. The methodology adopted is usually cost driven with high cost operations generally selecting scale prevention rather than removal.
Recently reported work 1 showed the potential to integrate scale removal and scale inhibition treatments into a single package, offering clear economic and technical advantages. The combined treatment inherently reduces well intervention costs and well downtime, and protects the value added by the scale removal treatment - by assuring that all of the zones that are stimulated are also inhibited.
Combining acid stimulation chemicals and scale inhibitors is by no means a simple process. Compatibility between the acid, the acid additives and the scale inhibitor presents a significant issue in both live and spent acids. This paper will examine these technical challenges and describes the desired properties of such combined systems. Case histories of recent field trials of combined scale removal and inhibition treatments will be presented, including details of job design, job execution and post-job evaluation. Data demonstrating the scale inhibitor return profile in these treatments will be shown, and lessons learnt from the initial trials will be discussed. Comparative performance data for previous acid treatments will also be presented.