Technology Focus: Completions Today (September 2009)
- Damir Horvat (Arrow Energy/Shell)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- September 2009
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 54 - 54
- 2009. Copyright is retained by the author. This document is distributed by SPE with the permission of the author. Contact the author for permission to use material from this document.
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The use of advanced completions technology to reduce well requirements is practiced widely in relation to production wells. Commingling production in layered, compartmentalized, and dispersed geological settings is achieved with multilateral and conventional wells with flow-control technology. Application of this technology to unconventional reservoirs has received relatively little attention. Still, the best well completion is the lowest-cost one that meets the demands for the well during its lifetime.
In unconventional reservoirs, an experimental completion of injecting CO2 and N2 has been shown to be effective in enhancing desorption of methane from coalbed-methane (CBM) plays. However, several issues remain to be resolved, such as the circulatory pattern of the injected gases within the reservoir, the effectiveness of the gases in contacting and displacing the methane adsorbed on the coal, and appropriate and cost-effective treatment of the produced-methane/injected-gas mixtures. An R&D well-engineering program similar to those in place for enhanced oil recovery could provide industry with knowledge concerning the feasibility of, and appropriate settings for, enhanced CBM production by conducting comprehensive geologic, laboratory, and field studies on the subject. Advanced completion options will evolve as operators and service companies devise new ways of applying basic completion equipment to meet requirements of unique reservoir and production situations, such as high-volume water producers with low pH values. Operating companies are pushing continuously to improve hydrocarbon recovery, a task that is becoming more and more difficult as they are pushed to develop fields in more-complex settings and with poorer reservoir properties. Many E&P development decisions are made under a high level of uncertainty. The degree of uncertainty and its effect on decision making regarding “optimum completion design” is, naturally, greatest at the exploration stage of field development. However, uncertainty quantification always remains an important task; even during later, more-mature phases of field development. Many of the R&D well-engineering goals can be met only with new technology; thus, JPT and SPE have focused on engineering as well as science.
I welcome this opportunity to select papers highlighting some of the important and dramatic innovations, and to thank the respective authors who are bringing them to fruition. I hope that you will find this section enjoyable and beneficial in helping you develop your own solutions for your unique well and reservoir conditions.
Completions Today additional reading available at OnePetro: www.onepetro.org
SPE 115742 • “Advanced Wells: How To Make a Choice Between Passive and Active Inflow-Control Completions” by V.M. Birchenko, SPE, Heriot Watt University, et al.
SPE 114810 • “Interactions Between Acids and Water-Swelling Elastomers” by A.S. Al-Yami, SPE, Saudi Aramco, et al.
IPTC 12145 • “Advanced Wells: A Comprehensive Approach to the Selection Between Passive and Active Inflow-Control Completions” by F.T. Al-Khelaiwi, SPE, Heriot Watt University, et al.
SPE 114475 • “Unique Solution for Fracture Isolation Resolves Breakthrough Challenges in Horizontal Slimhole Well” by Adib A. Al-Mumen, Saudi Aramco, et al.
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