Well/Wormhole Model of Cold Heavy-Oil Production With Sand
- Christopher M. Istchenko (University of Calgary) | Ian D. Gates (University of Calgary)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- April 2014
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 260 - 269
- 2013. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.4.11 Cold Heavy Oil Production (CHOPS), 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 3.2.5 Produced Sand / Solids Management and Control
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- 710 since 2007
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Cold heavy-oil production with sand (CHOPS) is a nonthermalheavy-oil-recovery technique used primarily in the heavy-oil belt in easternAlberta, Canada, and western Saskatchewan, Canada. Under CHOPS, typicalrecovery factors are between 5 and 15%, with the average being less than 10%.This leaves approximately 90% of the oil in the ground after the processbecomes uneconomic, making CHOPS wells and fields prime candidates forenhanced-oil-recovery (EOR) follow-up process field optimization. CHOPS wellsshow an enhancement in production rates compared with conventional primaryproduction, which is explained by the formation of high-permeability channelsknown as wormholes. The formation of wormholes has been shown to exist inlaboratory experiments as well as field experiments conducted with fluoresceindyes. The major mechanisms for CHOPS production are foamy oil flow, sandfailure (or fluidization), and sand production. Foamy oil flow aids inmobilizing sand and reservoir fluids, leading to the formation of wormholes.Foamy oil behavior cannot be effectively modeled by conventionalpressure/volume/temperature (PVT) behavior. Here, a new well/wormhole model forCHOPS is proposed. The well/wormhole model uses a kinetic model to deal withfoamy oil behavior, and sand is mobilized because of sand failure determined bya minimum fluidization velocity. The individual wormholes are modeled in asimulator as an extension of a production well. The model grows thewell/wormhole dynamically within the reservoir according to a growth criterionset by the fluidization velocity of sand along the existing well/wormhole. Ifthe growth criterion is satisfied, the wormhole extends in the appropriatedirection; otherwise, production continues from the existing well/wormholeuntil the criterion is met. The proposed model incorporates sand production andreproduces the general production behavior of a typical CHOPS well.
|File Size||2 MB||Number of Pages||10|
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