Intelligent Completions and Horizontal Wells Increase Production and Reduce Free-Gas and Water in Mature Fields
The maturity of the giant fields has resulted in a large number of
complex operational and reservoir management problems. The reservoirs pressure
has substantially dropped as a natural outcome of the accelerate production
rhythm sustained by the field during the productive life. The gas-oil contact
and oil-water contact have reached the production intervals in many wells.
Horizontal wells have proved to be a valid alternative to drain narrow oil
columns in this naturally fractured reservoir. To be able to recover the
reserves at sufficiently high rates, new ideas and state of the art
technologies need to be implemented to innovate the production process,
particularly well completions, to maintain the oil production plateau.
In the mature fields the objective is to maximize production rates to
effectively drain the reserves, while minimizing intervention costs.
Intelligent wells will be used to increase productivities and recoveries in a
less expensive manner, and to significantly reduce the production of free gas
The proposed innovative completion system consists of remotely actuated
flow control systems with permanent downhole gauges to permanently monitor the
production variables and take actions in real time. This alternative is
significantly more effective than the traditional procedure, consisting of
selective completions that require expensive subsea interventions to close one
zone to open the next one.
In this work, the applicability of multi-purpose intelligent completions
for highly productive oil reservoirs has been evaluated from both, the
productivity and the operational standpoints. Mandrels will be fitted with
intelligent gas lift valves that can be operated from the surface, using
downhole gauges for reservoir and production surveillance. Design criteria will
be discussed in detail to verify that every productivity case is fully