Surface Pressure Boosting, Egypt | SLB

Low-pressure well gets a second chance in Egypt

Egypt, Africa, Onshore

Production ExPRESS™ rapid production response solutions contributed to 2.5 years of uninterrupted production with a total of 1.2 million bbl recovered, boosting production from a mature well. 

Low reservoir pressure made well unproductive

An operator in Egypt’s northwestern desert had developed a new well but found that low reservoir pressure could not overcome the higher production line backpressure to enable oil to flow properly. The well was located 60 km from the nearest processing facility, and building new infrastructure was not feasible. Several unsuccessful attempts were made with an artificial lift solution, but after much effort trying to make it productive, the operator decided to remove the well from its field development plan.

Rapid response solutions used a standard well testing package

Told of the operator’s challenge, SLB proposed one of its Production ExPRESS rapid production response solutions. Leveraging SLB extensive domain expertise and surface well test equipment, Production ExPRESS solutions help overcome temporary obstacles to quickly advance production and avoid shutdowns. By using compact and customizable equipment, these solutions reduce capex while ensuring cash flow and continuous well deliverability—even in remote locations like the Egyptian desert.

To bring the well to production, SLB offered a surface pressure boosting package designed to process and stabilize the oil before pumping it into the production pipeline. The Production ExPRESS solutions package was designed and built based on surface well testing equipment that included a horizontal multistage surface pumping system to enable high gas volume fraction (GVF) applications. This supported well unloading and pressure boosting in such a way that either single- or multiphase effluent could be pumped into the production line. This kind of surface pressure boosting solution helps many operators overcome pressure challenges associated with well depletion, production systems limitations, and high pipeline backpressure—improving production performance.

Production ExPRESS solutions helped deliver production from a marginal well for 2.5 years.
Production ExPRESS solutions piping, tanks, and separators helped deliver production from a marginal well for 2.5 years before depletion.

Tanks and separators formed part of an agile solution

In this case, the modular surface pressure boosting package was designed to process the fluids through a separator, storing the oil in specially designed 500-bbl tanks as a second stage of separation, from where it was boosted to production. With this agile approach, SLB successfully implemented a robust solution by customizing standard well test equipment to meet the operator’s needs. To comply with the operator’s safety requirements, the well test separator was upgraded with additional safety devices based on cause-effect analysis by the global Production ExPRESS solutions support center.

In all, the Production ExPRESS solutions package provided a low-capex solution that helped the operator produce the well on a daily basis until depletion without building new infrastructure. The SLB solution contributed to 2.5 years of uninterrupted flow with a total of 1.2 million bbl of oil produced, which created cash flow to the operator by giving the well a second chance.

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