One of the biggest challenges faced by the industry in general is the cost incurred due to the limited operating life of electric submersible pump (ESP) systems and the need for workover operations (WO) to replace the pumps. The impact of current methods on the total cost of ownership is well understood within the artificial lift industry. To address this problem and reduce the dependence on rigs for WO, the owner is undertaking a series of field trials of the latest generation of rigless wireline-deployed ESP replacement systems.
This paper details the field experience gained to date while carrying out the appraisal for this technology. This field trial includes harsh downhole environments with high H2S content. It also addresses several key parameters such as success criteria, selection of completion equipment, well control contingencies to adhere to operator’s policies, and details of the planning and execution phases. The paper also provides a comparison between the conventional and the rigless ESP deployments, as well as results and lessons learned.
The partial results of this initial technology appraisal indicate that it has the potential to drastically lower ESP operating costs by reducing production deferment, minimizing HSE exposure, diverting rigs to other operations, and positively impacting asset value.
By sharing real-world lessons learned about technology deployment, the paper will serve as a guide to other operators as they look for ways to improve ESP cost efficiency.