Drilling and Completing Cascade and Chinook Wells: A Case History
- Chris Carpenter (JPT Technology Editor)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- October 2013
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 113 - 115
- 2013. Offshore Technology Conference
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- 143 since 2007
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This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper OTC 24179, "Drilling and Completing Cascade and Chinook Wells: A Design and Execution Case History," by Flavio Dias De Moraes, Petrobras; Oswaldo Moreira, Petrobras America; Ziad Haddad, FOI Technologies; Scott Ogier and Jonathan Shipley, SPE, Cherokee Offshore Engineering; Mauricio Rebelo, Petrobras; and Fernando Gama, Petrobras America, prepared for the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference, Houston, 6-9 May. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
During the design, implementation, and operation of the Cascade and Chinook (C&C) field development project in ultradeep water in the Lower Tertiary play of the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), the technical limits of single-trip multizone (STMZ) frac-pack systems were pushed to depths greater than 27,000 ft using high fracture rates and high-strength proppants; knowledge was gained from ultrahigh-pressure (greater than 20,000 psi) tubing-conveyed perforating systems; and well-design criteria suitable for high-drawdown (more than 12,000 psi) production operations were demonstrated.
The C&C development plan in the GOM is one of the most technologically challenging and complex projects ever implemented by Petrobras. This project uses the first floating production, storage, and offloading vessel in operation in US waters at a water depth of 8,200 ft. The C&C subsea infrastructure considers the use of subsea manifolds, rigid flowlines, pipe-in-pipe pipelines, and freestanding hybrid risers. These two fields are 15 miles apart and share several characteristics such as depth, lithology, and reservoir similarities. The Wilcox 1 (Eocene) and 2 (Paleocene) sands belong to the Lower Tertiary geologic period and are part of the latest exploratory frontier in the GOM. At least 12 discoveries have been made in the Lower Tertiary, holding a potentially recoverable volume of several billion bbl of oil, highlighting the importance of this technology development for the industry. These reservoirs are characterized by a considerable thickness of intercalated sandstones and shales. The reservoirs show low horizontal permeability (less than 100 md) and poor vertical communication between sand layers. Other characteristics include a very high static formation pressure, a maximum temperature of 256°F, and a low gas/oil ratio. The produced oil has carbon dioxide concentration in the gaseous phase of less than 1.5%, and there is no evidence of hydrogen sulfide contamination.
The casing design was based on delivering an 8½-in.-internal-diameter casing at total depth (TD) to accommodate the completion design. In this design, each string is run to its approximate design limit to maximize leakoff-test (LOT) values. One of the most important strategies of the C&C wells was the elimination of the 11⅞-in. liner, which prevents achieving adequate circulation rates for a successful primary cement job on the 10⅛-in. production casing.
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