Characterization of a Complex Carbonate Heavy-Oil Reservoir
- Karen Bybee (JPT Assistant Technology Editor)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- March 2010
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 65 - 66
- 2010. Society of Petroleum Engineers
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- 101 since 2007
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This article, written by Assistant Technology Editor Karen Bybee, contains highlights of paper SPE 120423, "Characterization of Complex Carbonate Heavy Oil Reservoir - A Case Study," by Afzal Iqbal,John Smith, Ali Reza Zahedi, Deemer Arthur, and Falah M. Al-Yami, Saudi Arabian Chevron; W. Scott Meddaugh, Chevron Energy Technology Company; Mansoor A. Rampurawala, SPE, Bingjian Li, SPE, and Ihsan Gok, SPE, Schlumberger Oilfield Services; and Talal Al Enazi, Kuwait Gulf Oil Company, originally prepared for the 2009 SPE Middle East Oil and Gas Show and Conference, Bahrain, 15-18 March.
The First Eocene reservoir is the shallowest producing interval of the Wafra field in the partitioned Neutral Zone between Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Characterization of this heavy-oil reservoir is challenging because of observed variations in oil viscosity, heterogeneity related to complex mineralogy, a possible dual-porosity system, and the presence of fractures of varing scales. The full-length paper presents several aspects of an integrated approach to characterize the reservoir.
Currently, a large-scale steamflood pilot (LSP) consisting of sixteen 2.5-acre inverted-5-spot patterns is being installed. This will be the first multipattern steamflood of a carbonate reservoir in the Middle East.
Oil was discovered in the First Eocene in 1954, and full-scale development began in 1956. The First Eocene has produced only 4% of original oil in place (OOIP), and primary recovery is not expected to exceed 10%. The oil gravity in this heavy-oil reservoir varies from 14 to 20ºAPI. The First Eocene is a depletion-drive reservoir with partial solution-gas drive and limited aquifer support. The estimated gross OOIP within the currently delineated field limit is more than 10 billion reservoir bbl.The reservoir mainly consists of dolomitized packstones and grainstones deposited under arid-to-semiarid conditions on a shallow, very gently dipping, low- to moderate-energy inner shelf or ramp setting in a gently dipping, restricted ramp environment. The presence of minor interbedded evaporites suggests restriction was occasionally sufficient for the development of hypersaline lagoons and sabkhas. The shallowing-upward cycles are capped by mud-dominated rocks, hardgrounds, and exposure surfaces. The average porosity is 35% and the average permeability is 250 md over the gross interval. Well-log and core-plug porosity values greater than 50% are common, and measured permeability values range up to 5,000 md. The First Eocene reservoir has an average depth of approximately 1,000 ft and a gross thickness of approximately 750 ft. Three wells were used in the study to demonstrate the approach of integrating log and core data to evaluate reservoir heterogeneity.
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