Evaluation of Horizontal Well Production
- R. Leon-Ventura (Pemex-E&P) | G. Gonzalez-G. (Pemex-E&P) | H. Leyva-G. (Pemex-E&P)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE International Petroleum Conference and Exhibition in Mexico, 1-3 February, Villahermosa, Mexico
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2000. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.6.9 Production Forecasting, 5.6.4 Drillstem/Well Testing, 3.3.1 Production Logging, 5.1.2 Faults and Fracture Characterisation, 1.6.6 Directional Drilling, 3 Production and Well Operations, 1.10.1 Drill string components and drilling tools (tubulars, jars, subs, stabilisers, reamers, etc), 3.2.3 Hydraulic Fracturing Design, Implementation and Optimisation, 4.5 Offshore Facilities and Subsea Systems, 2 Well Completion, 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements, 5.8.6 Naturally Fractured Reservoir, 5.4.2 Gas Injection Methods, 1.6 Drilling Operations
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When drained volumes want to be increased or to reduce investments with additional drilling wells, we can use horizontal wells as a good alternative for optimum exploitation of the oilfields. This is supported because the horizontal wells productivity becomes higher than in a vertical, due to that they communicate a large area of the producing formation, cross natural fractures, reduce pressure drops and advances of water-oil or gas-oil contacts are delayed.
In Mexico, several horizontal wells have been drilled in different kinds of formations, which initially have responded with production expectantions. However, after a short production time, productivity conditions have been reduced significatively, which have practically condemned the use of this technology in the development of hydrocarbons exploitation.
Therefore, in this work a comparative evaluation of the initial productivity of horizontal wells with respect to vertical wells is made to know their behavior and to identify design parameters that govern the feasibility of obtaining successful horizontal wells.
Analysis of horizontal wells on Agua Fria, Cantarell and Abkatun fields (North, Northeast Marine and Southwest Marine Regions, respectively) are included in this study.
In last years many horizontal wells around the world have been drilled1,2. The main objective of a horizontal well is to increase the contact area with the reservoir and therefore, to improve the productivity of the well. In general terms, the horizontal wells are effective in reservoirs of small thickness, in naturally fractured formations, in thick reservoirs and with problems of water and gas coning.
It has been demonstrated that one horizontal well behaves in equivalent form to a vertical well with a totally penetrating fracture; therefore, actually a horizontal well instead of fracturing a vertical well could be contemplated3. In a naturally fractured reservoir, a horizontal well will cross several fractures and then it will drain more effetively to the formation.
On the other hand, an stimulation can increase the production of a vertical well, but after a time the rate declines quickly. In general, the production rates of horizontal wells are significantly higher that those of stimulated vertical wells. Therefore, the behavior of its production has improved considerably the economic view and supports the development of the reservoirs exploitation4.
In this decade the interest of the application of horizontal wells has been accelerated which had mainly to improve of drilling and completion technologies, which has allowed to increase the efficiency and the economy in the hydrocarbons recovery1-3. The horizontal drilling can be applicable in any stage of hydrocarbons recovery: primary, secondary and enhanced5.
At this moment the reservoirs exploitation by means of horizontal wells has a great strategic value and offers benefits, such as: fast recovery of investments, increase of recoverable reserves, reduction of the production costs and minor number of wells or platforms by field.
This work has like main objectives, to emphasize the excellent aspects that govern the design of the horizontal drilling wells, to make a comparative study of the conditions of different horizontal well production and specially, the evaluation of the present conditions of production of horizontal wells developed in Mexico.
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