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Case Study: Production Rate More than Doubled in Deepwater Brazil

Mapping turbidite-type reservoir with PeriScope bed boundary mapper mitigates risk while drilling horizontal reservoir section

Challenge: Optimize horizontal well placement to maximize hydrocarbon production from two deepwater turbidite reservoir zones in complicated structural environment.

Solution: Use PeriScope bed boundary mapper to guide steering decisions.

Result: More than doubled hydrocarbon production rate compared with wells in same field drilled using conventional well placement technology.

Produce from highly complicated reservoir structure

An operator planning to drill a deepwater well in a field offshore Brazil wanted to maximize oil production by placing at least 350 m of the horizontal section within each of two distinct turbidite reservoir zones separated by a shale layer. Predrill modeling to plan the well trajectory highlighted the risk that the conventional technology used to place previous wells drilled in the field—real-time azimuthal laterolog measurements and images, coupled with a simultaneous correlation of LWD propagation resistivity patterns—would not ensure success in the highly variable structure of the targeted reservoirs. To mitigate that risk, the operator decided to take advantage of the PeriScope bed boundary mapper’s ability to enhance reservoir description while drilling to optimize the well path.

Steer wellbore to best place in reservoir

The PeriScope bed boundary mapper’s directional, deep-reading azimuthal electromagnetic measurements provided a better contour of the drilled turbidite than the conventional technology previously used. It also provided early detection of neighboring conductive beds and evaluation of the distance from the borehole to those beds. This early and accurate warning enabled the drilling team to make the trajectory adjustments required to drill the turbidite and keep the wellbore from entering nonproductive layers or exiting the reservoir.

Significantly increase production rate

By using the PeriScope bed boundary mapper to guide steering decisions, the operator placed more than 350 m of the horizontal section within each of the reservoir zones—in less than 4 days of drilling. The well produced oil at a rate of 18,000 bbl/d—more than double the 8,000-bbl/d rate of the field’s best-producing well placed using conventional technology.


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