Extensions of Pressure Build-Up Analysis Methods
- D.G. Russell
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- December 1966
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 1,624 - 1,636
- 1966. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.1.1 Exploration, Development, Structural Geology, 5.8.6 Naturally Fractured Reservoir, 5.3.2 Multiphase Flow, 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control
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RUSSELL, D.G.,* MEMBER AIME, SHELL DEVELOPMENT CO., HOUSTON, TEX.
Two techniques have been developed with which the applicability of pressure build-up analyses can be extended to include pressure data which previously have been considered virtually unusable. One of the interpretation methods makes possible the analysis of pressure build-up performance during the wellbore fill-up or after production period which occurs soon after a well is closed in. The other technique is an extension of a method for analyzing pressure build-up performance during the late-time portion of the pressure build-up which occurs after boundary effects first begin to alter the shape of a conventional pressure build-up curve. With both of these methods it is possible to obtain estimates of the kh product, the skin factor and the reservoir pressure. In addition, with the late-time analysis technique it is possible to obtain an estimate of the contributory drainage volume of the well being tested. This means that in some cases a check on reservoir limit test and (or) material-balance calculations can now be obtained from pressure build-ups. Both methods are slightly more time-consuming than conventional pressure build-up analysis methods because trial-and-error plots of pressure data must be made. The late-time method for analysis of pressure build-ups is in principle applicable to the late-time portion of a two-rate flow test or a pressure drawdown test. The interpretation formulas and procedures for these types of tests are also outlined. In these cases, as with pressure build-ups, it is significant that an estimate of the contributory pore volume is also obtained. Oil the basis of limited experience with the new techniques, it appears that satisfactory estimates of the kh product, skin factor, reservoir pressure and, for late-time analysis, contributory drainage volume can be obtained.
The analysis of bottom-hole pressure build-up behavior in closed-in wells has been a subject of interest in petroleum engineering circles for many years. In fact, few other subjects have received as much attention as pressure buildup analysis methods have. The cause for this interest is essentially twofold in nature. First, the pressure behavior of a well can normally be measured with a reasonably high degree of accuracy so that good data for analysis can be obtained. Secondly, over a fairly wide range of operating conditions, valuable information as to the quality of the reservoir rock and completion efficiency of the well can be obtained at a nominal cost. In recent years, numerous papers have been prepared on the effects of various operating conditions and reservoir heterogeneities on pressure buildup behavior. Very little work has been done, however, on extension of pressure build-up analysis methods to those pressure data which are not amenable to analysis by the present methods. The theory upon which the analysis of shut-in bottomhole pressure build-up data is based is derived from the solution of the radial flow equation for a slightly compressible fluid for constant-rate conditions. It requires that the well be closed in for a sufficient period of time to obtain a clearly defined linear portion on the plot of observed bottom-hole pressure vs log (t + t)/ t (where t is shutin time, and t is producing time to the instant of shut-in). From the slope of the plot and other normally obtainable data, the formation permeability, the well damage or skin factor, and the reservoir pressure at infinite shut-in time (if the reservoir were infinite) can be estimated. The successful application of this procedure depends on being able to recognize the straight-line section on the basic pressure build-up plot. The presently used pressure build-up interpretation theory also assumes that a well is closed in at the sand face and that no production into the well occurs after shut-in. In practice, of course, the well is closed in at the surface, and inflow into the well continues until the well fills sufficiently to transmit the effect of closing-in to the formation. This adjustment period is commonly referred to as the "after production" or "fill-tip" portion of the pressure build-up. During the period that the well fillup effect is most pronounced, the basic pressure build-up plot is nonlinear. At later shut-in times after the effects of a drainage boundary have been felt at the well, deviation from the straight-line behavior of the pressure build-up plot also results. In many cases either of these effects or a combination of both can make the straight-line portion on the pressure build-up plot difficult to recognize. Obviously, an extension of pressure build-up analysis methods to include the after production period and the period in which boundary effects are being felt would be desirable and might render valuable pressure data which for years have been considered virtually unusable. The principal reference of note concerning pressure buildup analysis during the after production period is a paper by Gladfelter, Tracy and Wilsey. In the approach of these authors it is necessary to measure the rate of influx into the well during the after production period.
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