Pilot programs provide relevant field data that transition EOR projects from models and simulations to sanctioned, full-field implementations. The complexity of reservoir heterogeneity and multiphase fluid behavior is such that optimal design of an EOR project requires reservoir scale and in situ measurements. There is a tradeoff in pilot-project size, from within a single wellbore, to multiwall, and on to small fields.
Schlumberger offers scalable technology that helps accelerate the pilot phase of an EOR project. These evaluations compress the time traditionally spent in a large scale pilot, rapidly informing the next decisions.
MicroPilot single-well in situ EOR evaluations feature a log-inject-log sequence in a single wellbore trip on wireline, returning valuable fluid and reservoir behavior information in a matter of hours. MiniPilot medium-scale EOR evaluations feature a small-scale test, typically a trio of injection, observation, and production wells. MiniPilot evaluations usually run several months, permitting the evaluation of larger-scale fluid flow inside the reservoir.
Monitoring technologies inform operators how the reservoir is responding, enabling them to control injection and other parameters to maximize production. Various logging tools provide fluid volumes and saturations. Deep reading technologies use physical measurements of the interwell space for fluid front monitoring. Distributed temperature profiles help identify the time, location, and reason for changes in flow, while 4D, or time-lapse, seismic depicts changes in the reservoir caused by injection or production.
Each EOR process needs to be accurately represented in a compositional simulator. In addition, the upscaling process from core to wellbore to reservoir has to honor small-scale experimental data and effectively model the entire reservoir. EOR simulation and upscaling techniques are constantly developing and are an active field of research.