A relatively large carbonate reservoir located offshore Saudi Arabia was developed over the last several years to augment production capacity. The objective was to raise the Field-A oil production capacity by an additional 25% to help offset downtime occurring on existing production platforms due to workover and facilities upgrading operations. In this paper, the development project scope, implementation, simulation, use of technology and drilling activities that resulted in a successful implementation of the development plan for the Field-A Reservoir-4, as well as the initial results, will be discussed.

The development was placed on a fast implementation schedule and was carried out during a high oil demand period (2006-2009) that placed large constraints on delivery of new equipment and platforms. The production increment was successfully brought onstream within a 3-year timeframe. The development plan included the installation of three platforms for both oil production wells and power water injectors as well as several sidetracks to add sustainable production capacity. Key wells were equipped with permanent downhole monitoring systems to monitor reservoir pressure performance in real time and the newly drilled producers were completed with electric submersible pump (ESP) lift systems. In addition, the first application in Saudi Aramco of a distributed temperature sensor (DTS) system was deployed in an injector to obtain real time flow profiles along the wellbore section.

The overall development project utilized a number of existing assets to minimize the development cost and trial testing of the innovative applications, such as using existing wells for on-platform water injection that consists of a water supply and an injection well combination while both located on the same platform, and an inverted ESP assisted water injection.

Reservoir simulation studies were used to optimize the wellbore placement and indicated the oil production plateau could be sustained for an extended period.

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