Development of Jubarte Field: From Project Basis to Operational Challenges and Solutions | Schlumberger
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Campos Basin
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Development of Jubarte Field: From Project Basis to Operational Challenges and Solutions


Petrobras operates the Jubarte heavy oil field located in the northern Campos basin offshore the state of EspĂ­rito Santo, Brazil, in 4,260 ft water depth. Initial field development (Phase I) included four producing wells connected to the FPSO P-34 (Rodrigues et al. 2005)1. For the full field development (Phase II), Petrobras chose electric submersible pumps (ESPs) as the primary method for artificial lift. The ESPs are located at the seabed in a satellite caisson to boost fluid to surface. Phase II, started in December 2010, comprised 15 producing wells fitted with 1500-hp ESPs and 7 injection wells connected to FPSO P-57.

ESP systems matching the demanding requirements associated with heavy oil fields did not yet exist. Many challenges were to be overcome to make the project a success, as it involved new technology qualification and testing, interaction amongst many companies with varied scopes, and a tight delivery schedule.

The field architecture was developed to tackle many aspects related to flow assurance. As production kicked off, ESPs were started successfully. With the onset of water breakthrough, new issues appeared that posed many challenges to well uptime, flow assurance, and safe pump operation. The system implemented bridged the gap between the available technologies identified during the development and tendering processes, and the technology improvements were brought forward in record time.

The ESP manufacturing and testing technologies introduced and the startup, transient and steady state operational methods developed have established a new benchmark in reliability of high-horsepower subsea ESPs. They have also provided the framework for optimized field production with maximum well uptime, making the Jubarte field one of the top five producers offshore Brazil.

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