Technical Paper: Development of a Full-Field Dynamic Model to Support Pressure Maintenance Projects in the World's Largest Clastic Oil Field, The Greater Burgan Field, Kuwait

Society: SPE
Paper Number: 173316
Presentation Date: 2015
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The Greater Burgan field in Kuwait is the largest clastic oil field in the world. Its sheer size, complex geology, intricate surface facility network, 5, 000 well-completions and 68-years of production history represent formidable challenges in reservoir simulation. In the last two decades, many flow simulation models, part-field and full-field, were developed as reservoir management tools to study depletion plan strategies and reservoir recovery. The new 2013 Burgan flow simulation was a major undertaking in terms of effort and financial cost. The model size, innovative technology, supporting resources, integrated workflow and meticulous planning applied to this project were unprecedented.

As the Burgan field has matured over time, the reservoir pressure has declined in certain areas, with associated reduced productivity. The reduction of wells' productivity, combined with the increasing water production, has necessitated improved oil recovery (IOR) initiatives in order to meet the Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) corporate vision-2030, sustaining oil production and ensuring high recovery from Burgan reservoirs. This paper describes the development of a dynamic model to design pressure maintenance projects for optimal reservoir management and IOR strategies. It was built on a history match model which has a 68-years of history matching on three levels, Global (Field), Regional (Reservoirs / Gathering Centers) and wells. These three levels depict the concerted history matching effort in accordance with the recurrent data quality. Details of geologic and dynamic modeling have been documented and presented in previous Burgan SPE papers and are not repeated in this paper.

The primary objectives of the Burgan prediction model are meeting the production target profiles with optimal field development plans (FDP) and to maximize oil recovery. There are two pressure maintenance projects, Wara Pressure Maintenance Project (WPMP) and Burgan Sand Upper (BGSU-PMP), included in the prediction model. In this paper, WPMP is discussed in detail as the waterflood project is now entering operation stage after 10 years of planning and construction. BGSU-PMP is part of the Burgan FDP but is not focused within the scope of this paper.

Sub-surface modeling in the giant Greater Burgan field complex is not just enormous, it is also arduous and challenging. The accomplishment by the team was momentous despite a less-than-expected result. Nonetheless, lessons learnt offered valuable information for future improvement. It has been a long and difficult journey from geological model to dynamic model over the last five years. Yet, in pursuing IOR and EOR, the journey has just begun.

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