First-Ever Level-4 Multilateral Well in North Kuwait Improves Oil Production
- Chris Carpenter (JPT Technology Editor)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- May 2015
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 124 - 127
- 2015. Society of Petroleum Engineers
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- 82 since 2007
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This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper SPE 171792, “First-Ever Level-4 Multilateral Well in North Kuwait Successfully Completed, Improves Oil Production,” by Meshal Al-Khaldy, Abhijit Dutta, Bijan Goswami, and Ali Al-Rashidi, KOC, and Leonque Rondon, Mohamed Warraky, and Mohamed Samie, Halliburton, prepared for the 2014 Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference, Abu Dhabi, 10–13 November. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
The first multilateral well in a North Kuwait field has been drilled recently. The intent is to improve oil production in productive layers subjected to water-coning problems by increasing reservoir exposure with Level-4 multilateral technology. The drilling process used a full suite of logging-while-drilling (LWD) tools, including azimuthal-deep-resistivity (ADR) technologies, to ensure the well path is precisely geosteered within the reservoir boundaries, and density/ porosity tools in real time combined with specialized modeling software, to position the well in the best possible reservoir.
Drilling horizontal wells aggressively primarily using inflow-control-device (ICD) completion techniques has been prevalent in North Kuwait fields. Although some multilateral wells had been drilled in other areas, the technology had not yet been adopted in these fields. Following the successful ICD horizontal-well campaign in North Kuwait, the operator decided to implement multilateral drilling techniques in its northern fields. The initial objectives of the well are provided in the complete paper.
Milled-window technology with control of window geometry (Fig. 1) was selected, rather than the conventional milling window. When the window is open in the casing without control, a roll-off effect occurs that generates distortion in the windows, which is likely to create operational problems during running of directional bottomhole assemblies or liners in the lateral.
After comparing the Technological Advancement of Multilateral (TAML) levels and design criteria in accordance with the specific geological features from the field, the TAML Level 4 was chosen. This decision was made on the basis of the need to isolate active zones in the new lateral drilled from the window and to avoid communication between the reservoir of interest and upper layers. The TAML Level 4 is characterized by running a liner, which could be completely cemented or stage cemented, with the upper section being cemented blank liners and the lower section being slotted liners with exposure in the reservoir.
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