Steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) is an effective thermal recovery method for enhanced bitumen recovery. However, the success of SAGD operation depends on several factors. Reduction in gas and steam production is a crucial factor to achieve a successful SAGD operation. Autonomous inflow control valve (AICV) restricts the inflow of steam and/or gas in the zones where breakthrough occurs and improves recovery from SAGD operations. This can be achieved by restricting the excessive steam and/or gas production in a well that is perfectly isolated by packers. This paper presents the performance analysis of AICVs, and passive inflow control devices (ICDs) based on the results from experiments and simulations.

Experiments which illustrate the performance of an orifice type ICD and AICV is presented and compared. The results confirm the significantly better ability of the AICV to restrict the production of gas and/or steam. Simulations are performed with OLGA/ROCX which provides a dynamic wellbore- reservoir model. Simulation results show that utilizing AICV in the SAGD production wells will reduce the gas and steam production by 74% after 365 days of production. The results confirmed the significant benefit of AICV in steam and/or gas reduction and consequently increased oil production. Reduction in steam production will improve the overall SAGD operation performance. This will also result in more cost-effective oil production.

In addition, the annular flow in a well completed by inflow controllers was studied by using OLGA and NETool. Almost all the reservoir simulators calculate the multiphase flow properties in annulus with no-slip. This study was an attempt to initiate discussions and provide an insight into a fundamental problem that almost all the reservoir simulators are dealing with.

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