RECENT developments in gas-lift and pumping practice have been characterised by research and engineering rather than precedent and invention. The fundamental purposes of production engineering are maximum ultimate recovery and minimum total unit cost of production. Progress is being made towards both of these objectives. The sub-surface pressure gauges recently developed are proving a valuable tool in providing definite information upon points previously the subject of conjecture. They permit of determining the effectiveness of any producing method, the productivity factor of any well, and an estimate of the potential production of the well without an open-flow test. Application of sub-surface pressure data is not complicated where producing zones are thin, and formulae for taking into consideration the thickness of zones are presented. Gas-lift efficiency is dependent upon utilising the correct flow string, the minimum back pressure, and correct amount of circulated gas. Methods of determining the efficiency of the flow string and the correct amount of circulated gas are illustrated. The advantages of tapered tubing are questioned. Requirements for securing maximum rate of production from pumping wells are stated and discussed, together with technique of measuring effectiveness of pumping installations. Study of volumetric efficiency continues to be the most profitable point of attack upon pumping problems and some new formulae, tables, and methods are presented. Power efficiency is improved by increasing volumetric efficiency, and is also dependent upon the type and size of pumping machinery and the counterbalance used. Counterbalancing is discussed and a table given. The first cost of pumping equipment is being greatly reduced at the same time that convenience and efficiency are being increased. Costs are quoted. The two most common types of A.P.1. standard pumps are still generally used,. but one new type is proving advantageous for some conditions. Relative operating costs of motors, gas engines, and steam engines are discussed briefly and limited data given.. GENERAL. Recent developments in gas-lift and pumping practice have been characterised by research and engineering rather than precedent and invention. There have been few radical changes in either equipment or methods, There has been a noticeable tendency towards the elimination of fantastic machines, methods, and devices that have cluttered the field of the past, and it is coming to be recognised that oil production follows the well-known physical laws rather than being a law unto itself. The two fundamental purposes of production engineering are maximum ultimate recovery and minimum total unit cost of production.
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Marsh, Hallan N. "A Review of Developments in Gas-Lift and Pumping." Paper presented at the 1st World Petroleum Congress, London, UK, July 1933.
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