Numerical Simulation of Steam-Assisted Gravity Drainage With Vertical Slimholes
- Jeannine Chang (Devon Canada) | John Ivory (Alberta Innovates - Technology Futures) | Cathal Tunney (Alberta Innovates - Technology Futures)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering
- Publication Date
- December 2012
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 662 - 675
- 2012. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 4.3.4 Scale, 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements, 5.3.9 Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage
- 4 in the last 30 days
- 652 since 2007
- Show more detail
- View rights & permissions
|SPE Member Price:||USD 10.00|
|SPE Non-Member Price:||USD 30.00|
Steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) is the primary in-situ recovery method for bitumen from the large Athabasca deposit in Alberta, Canada. SAGD field operations encounter a significant decrease in production performance when low-permeability shale barriers are present in the formation. These layers can reduce SAGD performance and impede the growth of the steam chamber. They also significantly limit the percentage of the deposit from which bitumen can be economically recovered with SAGD. The concept of drilling vertical slimholes to create flow paths through barriers was conceived and investigated at Alberta Innovates?Technology Futures (AITF), formerly the Alberta Research Council. The use of slimholes has the potential to significantly increase the amount of recoverable bitumen (reserves) and the rate at which it is produced during SAGD. For shallow reservoirs, the slimholes could be drilled from the surface at a relatively low cost. It is believed that the process can be economically viable after its technical operation has been optimized with improvements in drilling technology, slimhole size and spacing, and enhanced usage of the slimholes in the development of steam chambers above the shale layers. Alternatively, the slimholes could be drilled from the horizontal wellbores (to avoid surface disturbance) as either horizontal slimholes from the producer or as horizontal/vertical slimhole combinations from the injector. The 2D and 3D field-scale numerical simulations were performed by use of reservoir properties and operating conditions based on published information for the MacKay River SAGD operation in the Athabasca deposit. The reservoir depth was 135 m, the initial pressure 500 kPaa, the initial temperature 7.5°C, and the initial oil saturation (SO ) 0.8. The simulations explored the effect of vertical slimholes, which were laterally offset 7 m from the horizontal well-pair in reservoirs with and without shale layers or shale lenses. The effects on SAGD performance that were investigated were slimhole cross section (25 cm x 25 cm or 50 cm x 50 cm), the distance between slimholes (12 or 24 m) in the direction parallel to the well pair, the permeability of the reservoir and the vertical slimholes, and horizontal slimholes from the injector or producer. The slimhole cross section represents the disturbed area adjacent to the drilled slimhole and the drilled hole itself and is therefore relatively large. The slimholes were represented as high-permeability vertical channels by use of refined grids. For a reservoir with a continuous shale layer, SAGD performance was improved by vertical slimholes because of the recovery of previously inaccessible oil from above the shale layer, where a secondary steam chamber was formed.
|File Size||2 MB||Number of Pages||14|
Butler, R.M. 1991a. Developments and Description of Steam-Assisted GravityDrainage Using Horizontal Wells. Horizontal Well Technical Conference, WorldOil, Calgary, Canada, 18-19 June.
Butler, R.M. 1991b. Thermal Recovery of Oil and Bitumen. EnglewoodCliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc.
Butler, R.M. 1992. Steam-Assisted Gravity Drainage--Concept, Development,Performance, Future. Paper presented at Heavy Oil and Oil Sands Tech Symposium,CHOA, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada, 11 March.
Butler, R.M. and Chung, K.H. 1988. A Theoretical and Experimental Study ofSteam-Assisted Gravity Drainage Process. In Fourth UNITAR/UNDP InternationalConference on Heavy Crude and Tar Sands, 7-12 August 1988, Edmonton,Alberta, Canada, ed. R.F. Meyer and E.J. Wiggins, Vol. 4, 191-210.Edmonton, Alberta, Canada: Alberta Oil Sands Technology and ResearchAuthority.
Butler, R.M., McNab, G.S., and Lo, H.Y. 1981. Theoretical Studies on theGravity Drainage of Heavy Oil during in situ Steam Heating. Can. J. Chem.Eng. 59 (4): 455-460. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cjce.5450590407.
Butler, R.M. and Stephens, D.J. 1981. The Gravity Drainage of Steam HeatedHeavy Oil to Parallel Horizontal Wells. J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. 20 (2): 90-96. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/81-02-07.
Chalaturnyk, R. 1997. Geomechanical Response of Heavy Oil Reservoirs to theSteam Assisted Gravity Drainage Process. Paper SPE 37569 presented at theInternational Thermal Operations Heavy Oil Symposium, Bakersfield, California,10-12 February. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/37569-MS.
Chalaturnyk, R. and Li, P. 2004. When Is It Important to ConsiderGeomechanics in SAGD Operations? J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. 43 (4):53-61. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/04-04-05.
Chang, J., Ivory, J., and Tunney, C. 2011. Numerical Simulation of SAGD withVertical Slimholes. Paper CSUG/SPE 148803 presented at the CanadianUnconventional Resources Conference, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 15-17 November.http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/148803-MS.
Collins, P.M. 2002. Injection Pressures for Geomechanical Enhancement ofRecovery Process in the Athabasca Oil Sands. Paper SPE 79028 presented at theSPE International Thermal Operations and Heavy Oil Symposium and internationalWell Technology Conference, Calgary, Albert, Canada, 4-7 November. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/79028-MS.
Collins, P.M., 2005. Geomechanical Effects on the SAGD Process. SPE ResEval & Eng 10 (4): 367-375. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/97905-PA.
Edmunds, N.R. 1987. UTF Gravity Drainage Process Development. Adv Pet Rec& Upgrading Technology Conference, AOSTRA, Edmonton, 2-3 June.
Edmunds, N.R. and Gittins, S.D. 1993. Effective Application of SteamAssisted Gravity Drainage of Bitumen to Long Horizontal Well Pairs. J. Cdn.Pet. Tech. 32 (6): 49-55. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/93-06-05.
Edmunds, N.R. and Good, W.K. 1996. The Nature and Control of GeyserPhenomena in Thermal Production Risers. 35 (4): 41-48. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/96-04-04.
Edmunds, N.R., Haston, J.A., and Best, D.A. 1988. Analysis andImplementation of the Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage Process at the AOSTRAUTF. In Fourth UNITAR/UNDP International Conference on Heavy Crude and TarSands, 7-12 August 1988, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, ed. R.F. Meyerand E.J. Wiggins, Vol. 4, 223-242. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada: Alberta Oil SandsTechnology and Research Authority
Edmunds, N.R., Kovalsky, J., Gittens, S.D. et al. 1991. Review of Phase ASteam-Assisted Gravity Drainage Test. An Underground Test Facility. Paper SPE21529 presented at the International Thermal Operations Symposium, AmericanInstitute of Mining, Metallurgical and Petroleum Engineers, SPE, Bakersfield,California, 7-8 February.
Edmunds, N.R., Kovalsky, J.A., Pennacchioli, E.D. et al. 1994. Review of thePhase A Steam-Assisted Gravity Drainage Test: An Underground Test Facility.SPE Res Eng 9 (2): 119-124. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/21529-PA.
Edmunds, N.R. McCormack, M.E. Suggett, J.C. et al. 1987. Design ofHorizontal Well Completions. AOSTRA Underground Test Facility. Paper presentedat the 4th Annual Heavy Oil and Oil Sands Symposium, University of Calgary,Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 18 February.
Energy Resources Conservation Board. 2011. June. ST98-2011: Alberta's EnergyReserves 2010 and Supply/Demand Outlook 2011-2020.
Energy Resources Conservation Board Staff Review and Analysis. 2010. TotalE&P Canada Ltd. Surface Steam Release of May 18, 2006, Joslyn Creek SAGDThermal Operation, February 11.
Frauenfeld, T.W., Jossy, C., Bleile, J. et al. 2009. Experimental andEconomic Analysis of the Thermal Solvent and Hybrid Solvent Processes. J.Cdn. Pet. Tech. 48 (11): 55-62. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/130445-PA.
Frauenfeld, T.W., Jossy, C., and Wang, X. 2005. Experimental Studies of aThermal Solvent Oil Recovery Process for Live Heavy Oil. Paper 2005-151presented at the Canadian International Petroleum Conference, Calgary, Alberta,Canada, June 7-9. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/2005-151.
Government of Alberta. 2010. Alberta's Energy Industry--An Overview, June.http://www.energy.alberta.ca/Org/pdfs/Alberta_Energy_Overview.pdf.
Government of Alberta. 2011. Oil Sands Industry Update, Fall 2011, Reportingon the Period June 4, 2011 to September 2, 2011.
Hein, F. and Cotterill, D. 2006. The Athabasca Oil Sands, A RegionalGeological Perspective, Fort McMurray Area, Alberta, Canada. NaturalResources Research 15 (2): 85-102. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11053-006-9015-4.
Hein, F.J. and Marsh, R.A. 2008. Regional Geologic Framework, DepositionalModels and Resource Estimates of the Oil Sands of Alberta, Canada. Paper2008-320 presented at the World Heavy Oil Congress, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada,10-12 March.
Husky Energy Inc., 2004. Husky Thermal Project, February. http://www.huskyenergy.com/downloads/abouthusky/publications/SunriseThermal.pdf.
Komery, D.P., Luhning, R.W., Pearce, J.V. et al. 1998. Pilot Testing ofPost-Steam Bitumen Recovery from Mature SAGD Wells in Canada. Paper 1998.214presented at the 7th UNITAR International Conference for Heavy Crude and TarSands, Beijing, China.
Kupsch, N., Hagerman, T., Kennedy, D. et al. 2005. Petro-Canada MacKay River2005 Performance Presentation to ERCB, Approval No. 8668.
Kupsch, N., Hagerman, T., Kennedy, D. et al. 2006. Petro-Canada MacKay River2006 Performance Presentation to ERCB, Approval No. 8668.
Li, P. and Chalaturnyk, R.J. 2005. Geomechanical Model of Oil Sands. PaperPS2005-430 presented at the SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA International Thermal Operationsand Heavy Oil Symposium, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 1-3 November. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/97949-MS.
Li, P. and Chalaturnyk, R. 2006. Permeability Variations Associated WithShearing and Isotropic Unloading During the SAGD Process. J. Cdn. Pet.Tech. 45 (1): 54-61. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/06-01-05.
Li, P. and Chalaturnyk, R. 2009. History Match of the UTF Phase A Projectwith Coupled Reservoir Geomechanical Simulation. J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. 48 (1): 29-35. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/09-01-29.
Li, P., Chalaturnyk, R., and Tan, T.B. 2006. Coupled Reservoir GeomechanicalSimulations for the SAGD Process. J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. 45(1): 33-39. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/06-01-02.
Li, P., Chan, M., and Froehlich, W. 2009. Steam Injection Pressure and theSAGD Ramp-Up Process. J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. 48 (1): 36-41. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/09-01-36.
Pooladi-Darvish, M. and Mattar, L. 2002. SAGD Operations in the Presence ofOverlying Gas Cap and Water Layer--Effect of Shale Layers. J. Cdn. Pet.Tech. 41 (6): 40-51. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/02-06-04.
Reid, R.C. 1977. The Properties of Gases and Liquids, third edition,New York: McGraw-Hill.
RPS Energy Canada. 2009. JOGMEC SAGD Performance Study, Final Presentation,Tokyo, 29 September. http://trc.jogmec.go.jp/pdf/20091002/1.pdf.
Sharpe, J.A., Shinde, S.B., and Wong, R.C. 1997. Cold Lake Borehole Mining.J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. 36 (1): 58-63. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/97-01-06.
Touhidi-Baghini, A. 1998. Absolute Permeability of McMurray Formation OilSands at Low Confining Stress, PhD Thesis, University of Alberta.
Tran, D., Nghiem, L., and Buchanan, L. 2005. An Overview of IterativeCoupling Between Geomechanical Deformation and Reservoir Flow. Paper SPE 97879presented at the SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA International Thermal Ooperations Heavy OilSymposium, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 1-3 November. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/97879-MS.
Tristone Capital Inc. 2007. Industry Update. SAGD: Looking Beneath theSurface of the Hottest Oil Growth Sector in Canada, July 25.
Wan, R.G. 1991. A Constitutive Model for the effective Stress-StrainBehaviour of Oil Sands. J. Can. Pet. Tech. 30 (4): 89-98. http://dx.doi.org/10.2118/91-04-08.
Werniuk, J. 2007. Oil sands debate. Can. Min. J. 128 (3):5.