Enhanced Extended Reach Well Design in Saudi Arabia Leads to Optimized Drilling Performance and Significant Cost Reduction
- German Muñoz (Saudi Aramco) | Prudencio Balseiro (Saudi Aramco) | Bader Dhafeeri (Saudi Aramco) | Ahmad Ba Im (Saudi Aramco)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- IADC/SPE Drilling Conference and Exhibition, 1-3 March, Fort Worth, Texas, USA
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2016. IADC/SPE Drilling Conference and Exhibition
- 1.6.6 Directional Drilling, 3.2.9 Lifecycle Management and Planning, 2.2 Completion Installation and Operations, 3 Production and Well Operations, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 3.2 Well Operations, Optimization and Stimulation, 1.6.10 Running and Setting Casing, 7.3.3 Project Management
- Well planning, Enhancement, Slim hole design, Extended Reach, Saudi Arabia
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The Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco) operates one of the principal high profile extended reach drilling (ERD) projects in the world. This is accomplished through the development of a sizable number of horizontal wells categorized according to the total depth. Wells with the shortest vertical displacement have been significantly optimized during the project execution thereby reducing the room for enhancement. The drilling engineering team conducted a comprehensive evaluation of the existing casing scheme and problematics along the M field. A new approach was devised to redesign wells with a total depth up to 17,600 ft. The aim was to achieve a substantial improvement in drilling performance and potential savings for the remainder of the project.
ML-1 and MO-1 were selected as candidates to implement the novel alternative; both drilled from different platforms where several wells have been previously completed using the standard design. Drilling troubles, such as loss of circulation and hole instability, occurred during the execution of such wells leading to major lost time. The solution comprised the optimization of the well trajectory, slim-down the upper hole sections and combine the lower ones, drill longer intervals and set casings deeper to cover problematic zones without compromising the well integrity. The detailed engineering study included a probabilistic analysis to evaluate the economic viability of the landmark application.
Two wells were successfully drilled and completed applying the downsizing strategy. The impact of anticipated challenging events in both 12 1/4-in and 8 1/2-in holes was decreased as a result of the new design. The implemented preventive plans led to a rapid elimination of encountered challenges. This optimization produced a combined 27% reduction in drilling time, and minimal non-productive time (NPT) with associated global cost savings of 39% compared to a large hole string design.
Finally, this new approach in a still ongoing project along with the feasibility of extending it to other areas will lead to potential improvement in well delivery and operating cost.
|File Size||8 MB||Number of Pages||16|