Wireless Simultaneous Acquisition and Analysis of Dynamometer and Fluid Level Data for Real-Time Monitoring of Well Performance
- James N. McCoy (Echometer Company) | Anthony L. Podio (University of Texas At Austin) | Dieter Joseph Becker (Echometer Company) | Gustavo Fernandez (Upco de Venezuela)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Artificial Lift Conference-Americas, 21-22 May, Cartagena, Colombia
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2013, Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.6.4 Drillstem/Well Testing, 3.1.5 Plunger lift, 3.1 Artificial Lift Systems, 2.2.2 Perforating, 3.1.1 Beam and related pumping techniques, 5.3.4 Integration of geomechanics in models, 4.2 Pipelines, Flowlines and Risers
- Wireless, dynamometer, rod pumping, fluid level, monitoring
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Real time analysis and visualization of the performance of a rod pumped well are achieved using multiple small and compact wireless sensors that simultaneously transmit acquired data to a digital laptop manager that integrates the measurements, displays performance graphs and provides advanced tools for analysis and troubleshooting of the pumping system.
Battery powered wireless sensors for fluid level, pressure and dynamometer data acquisition are easily deployed and quickly installed on the well. The laptop manager automatically recognizes and commissions the sensors. The user sets up and controls the acquisition of data which may include multiple sensors that synchronously monitor variables such as tubing and casing pressures, fluid level and polished rod acceleration/position and load as a function of time. Elimination of cables and connectors improves the reliability of the hardware and data while speeding up the set-up-tear-down process. The user interface presents a smart instrument rather than a complex application.
Among the many innovations provided by these well performance analysis tools stand out the real time visualization of the operation and fluid distribution in the down-hole pump, the simultaneous display of quantitative surface and pump dynamometer graphs in conjunction with fluid level and wellbore pressures. Acquired data, wellbore description and pumping system characteristics are saved as a historical data base creating a continuum of the well's information and performance for direct comparison and detailed analysis.
The paper describes the hardware and user interface, the procedures for installation and acquisition and several examples of field data and well performance analyses for a variety of rod pumping installations.
Monitoring of rod pumped well performance from surface measurements of fluid level and dynamometer loads has been in use since the early 1930s when the original objective was only to observe whether fluid was present in the annulus above the pump and whether the pump was filled with liquid at the time of the test. The tedious task of manually converting the echo travel time to the distance to the liquid level and the load and position of the polished rod to a pump dynamometer diagram was greatly improved and facilitated by the introduction of portable laptop computers in the early 1990s that could be operated at the well site1,2. These programs for well performance data acquisition and analysis, although greatly improved, generally present quantitative results to the user in terms of numeric and graphical values. However, accurate determination of the well's performance still requires a significant degree of data interpretation on the part of the user who in many instances does not have the time or the necessary background to efficiently perform this analysis.
The new generation of software and hardware discussed in this paper, takes advantage of the tremendous increase in laptop processing speed, memory size and screen resolution to generate in real time a quantitative visualization of the downhole rod pump operation, plunger motion, valve action and fluid flow. This animation is presented simultaneously with the corresponding fluid distribution in the wellbore, obtained from the acoustic fluid level survey, to let the user see the complete performance of the well and lift system, shown schematically in Figure 1, without having to interpret the conventional dynamometer card or fluid level record for the majority of wells that he monitors. The new system also takes advantage of the development of reliable, miniaturized wireless instrumentation that increase measurement flexibility, eliminate inaccuracies caused by defective cables and connectors and greatly speeds up installation and tear-down.
|File Size||2 MB||Number of Pages||13|