Practical Consideration of an Inflow-Control Device Application for Reducing Water Production
- Liang-Biao Ouyang (Chevron ETC)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, 4-7 October, New Orleans, Louisiana
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2009. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.5 Reservoir Simulation, 5.8.7 Carbonate Reservoir, 3 Production and Well Operations, 2.3.3 Flow Control Equipment, 1.8 Formation Damage, 2.3 Completion Monitoring Systems/Intelligent Wells, 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control, 2.4.5 Gravel pack design & evaluation, 5.7.2 Recovery Factors, 4.6 Natural Gas, 4.3.4 Scale, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 2 Well Completion, 3.2.8 Well Performance Modeling and Tubular Optimization
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Inflow control devices, or ICDs, have been developed to improve well performance and enhance reservoir management by mitigating undesired water and/or gas breakthroughs that often occur due to a variety of factors, including: a). reservoir permeability heterogeneity; b). heel-toe effects - significant wellbore pressure drop from toe to heel; c). different reservoir pressure in different regions penetrated by a well.
Success of an ICD completion relies heavily on appropriate design of the completion. Several key issues that should be addressed in designing an ICD completion have been identified and their impacts on performance of a well equipped with ICDs will be elaborated through a couple of case studies after a brief introduction of the three major types of inflow control devices (ICD). Practical guidelines for applying an ICD completion for reducing water production will also be shared.
Several important observations have been achieved through this study:
- Appropriate design and planning for an ICD completion requires: a). good knowledge of reservoir and geology, such as permeability, porosity, reservoir pressure, as well as oil/water saturation distribution, etc; b). accurate modeling of the near wellbore fluid flow and flow in the completions; c). reasonable account for the change of reservoir condition over time - possible coupling between completion simulation software with a reservoir simulator is preferred.
- Zonal isolation plays a critical role in the success of an ICD completion, especially in terms of water production reduction.
- ICDs have been mainly developed to minimize toe-heel effects and balance inflow. Under certain circumstances, nontrivial water production may be anticipated from a well from day one of the well production. An ICD is not expected to trim much of water production from this type of well since water is already there, unless additional measures are taken to cut down water production.
- There are potential approaches for minimizing water production in well with ICD completion, such as:
- Change well trajectory to avoid high water saturation region(s);
- Apply ICDs with efficient phase filtering capability;
- Block water production with efficient zonal isolation.
- A reasonable design of ICD completion may have promising potential to cut water production as long as good zonal isolation across layers and sections exists; however, water production may also be cut with other completion options without ICD under the circumstances.
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