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Technical Paper: The Use of a Transient Multiphase Simulator to Predict and Suppress Flow Instabilities in a Horizontal Shale Oil Well

Society: SPE
Paper Number: 158500
Presentation Date: 2012
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Abstract

Due to its limited drainage radius, the sand face pressure in a hydraulically fractured, horizontal shale oil well will fall rapidly with cumulative production. Once the sand face pressure falls below the bubble point, flow instabilities will increase dramatically. The onset of instability can be predicted using a transient multiphase simulator such as OLGA1, and techniques to minimize instabilities can be quantitatively investigated through simulation. This paper describes flow instabilities in a typical horizontal shale oil well and demonstrates both causes and remedies for fluctuating production rates in the intermediate and latter stages of well life. Through the suppression of production instability, the ultimate recovery of reserves may be significantly increased.

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Recovery of Reserves Increased Using Simulations

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The OLGA simulator enables the onset of instability to be predicted, which can lead to significantly increased recovery of reserves. OLGA Dynamic Multiphase Flow Simulator on the Schlumberger Software site