Integrated Approach Identifies Formation Damage in Unfavorable Conditions
- Chris Carpenter (JPT Technology Editor)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- February 2020
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 73 - 75
- 2019. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 8 in the last 30 days
- 37 since 2007
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This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper SPE 194284, “Pushing the Limits of Damage Identification With Coiled Tubing in Extreme Conditions: A Success Story From Japan,” by Nozomu Yoshida, SPE, Satoshi Teshima, SPE, and Ryo Yamada, INPEX, and Umut Aybar, SPE, and Pierre Ramondenc, SPE, Schlumberger, prepared for the 2019 SPE/ICoTA Well Intervention Conference and Exhibition, The Woodlands, Texas, USA, 26–27 March. The paper was peer reviewed and is scheduled for publication in SPE Production & Operations.
The success of water-conformance operations often depends on clear identification of the water-production mechanism. Such assessment can be complicated significantly when formation damage is also occurring. Coiled tubing (CT) and distributed temperature sensing (DTS) were combined to overcome challenging conditions (high temperature, low injectivity, high deviation, long perforated intervals, and wellbore damage) to identify damaged oil zones and suspected water-bearing zones in an onshore well in Japan.
Source and location affect the selection of water-shutoff techniques, which are either mechanical or chemical in nature or a combination. No matter the operational approach, identification of the water zone is a critical step for any subsequent course of actions.
One method for the identification of water-producing zones is the use of production logging. Conventional production logging uses spinners and capacitance logs to detect water flow in the wellbore. Production logging tools (PLTs) can be deployed into the wellbore using slickline, wireline, or CT. To enable real-time evaluation of the acquired data, possible options include wireline, digital slickline, and CT equipped with either a conductor cable or fiber optics.
In damaged wells with high water cut, flow conditions can be unstable, with drastic changes in flow regimes. Once the well can no longer sustain stable flow because of reservoir depletion or damage in the absence of an artificial-lift method, a PLT becomes impractical. Furthermore, when wellbore conditions are complicated by the presence of debris or contaminants, data acquisition itself becomes difficult. Quantification of the damage profile and of water-producing intervals is of great importance in proper planning for subsequent operations.
To address these challenges, an alternative approach was used wherein DTS obtained through fiber optics deployed with CT was used to quantify damage profiles in severely damaged wells and to identify suspected water-bearing zones by integrating complementary information.
The proposed operational procedures are similar to those used for the quantification of fluid placement during acidizing operations: injection of fluid to cool down the formation and shut-in to measure rate and amplitude of temperature recovery along intervals of interest. In the present case, brine was used as the injection fluid. Quantification of the damage and injection-rate profiles are achieved by temperature inversion; the measured DTS data are matched with the simulated temperature response given by combined flow and thermal numerical models accounting for key formation and near-wellbore parameters.
The subject well was suspected to be severely damaged during the completion phase and yielded a relatively high water cut during flow test. This case not only highlights the validity of the proposed approach but also details the work flow and analyses performed to obtain meaningful data and to reduce uncertainty of the interpretation. The work also raises the importance of the integration of complementary data for a comprehensive understanding of well conditions.
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