|Publisher||Society of Petroleum Engineers||Language||English|
|Content Type||Journal Paper|
|Title||Vertical Multiphase Flow Correlations for High Production Rates and Large Tubulars|
|Authors||Aggour, M.A., Al-Yousef, H.Y., King Fahd U. of Petroleum & Minerals; Saudi Aramco|
|Journal||SPE Production & Facilities|
|Volume||Volume 11, Number 1||Pages||41-48|
|Copyright||1996. Society of Petroleum Engineers|
Numerous correlations exist for predicting pressure drop in vertical multiphase flow. These correlations, however, were all developed and tested under limited operating conditions that do not match the high production rates and large tubulars normally found in the Middle East Fields. This paper presents a comprehensive evaluation of existing correlations and modifications of some correlations to determine and recommend the best correlation(s) for various field conditions. Over 400 field data sets covering tubing sizes from 2 3/8 in. to 7 in., oil rates up to 23,200 BPD, water cuts up to 95% and GOR up to 927 SCF/STB were used in this study. Considering all data combined, the Beggs and Brill correlation provided the best pressure predictions. However, the Hagedorn and Brown correlation was better for water cuts above 80%, while Hasan and Kabir model was better for total liquid rates above 20,000 BPD. The Aziz et al. correlation was significantly improved when the Orkiszewski flow-pattern transition criteria were used.
A reliable and accurate means for prediction of pressure drop in vertical multiphase flow is essential for proper design of well completions and artificial-lift systems and for optimization and accurate forecast of production performance. Because of the complexity of multiphase flow, mostly empirical or semi-empirical correlations have been developed for prediction of pressure drop. Tens of such correlations have been developed since 1914. However, the correlations which have seen the most application and testing are those of Aziz et al., Hagedorn & Brown, Duns & Ros, Beggs & Brill and Hasan & Kabir. Each of these correlations was developed and/or tested for a specific range of operating conditions.
Several studies have been performed to evaluate various multiphase flow correlations. Orkiszewski was the first to perform such a study using 148 well cases. This resulted in the development of his own, better, correlation. A later study by Espanol on 44 wells confirmed the conclusions of Orkiszewski; Camacho used data from 111 high gas-liquid ratio (GLR) wells to test five correlations. He concluded that no method was sufficiently accurate for all ranges of GLR. He reported that the best results were obtained from the Fancher & Brown correlation followed by the correlation of Poettmann and Carpenter.
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