Quantitatively Assessing Hydrate-Blockage Development During Deepwater-Gas-Well Testing
- Zhiyuan Wang (China University of Petroleum (East China)) | Yang Zhao (China University of Petroleum (East China)) | Jianbo Zhang (China University of Petroleum (East China)) | Xuerui Wang (China University of Petroleum (East China)) | Jing Yu (China University of Petroleum (East China)) | Baojiang Sun (China University of Petroleum (East China))
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- August 2018
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 1,166 - 1,183
- 2018.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Hydrate deposition, Annular flow, Hydrate blockage, Deepwater gas well testing, High Blockage Risk Region
- 9 in the last 30 days
- 199 since 2007
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Hydrate-associated problems pose a key concern to the oil and gas industry when moving toward deeper-offshore reservoir development. A better understanding of hydrate-blockage-development behavior can help flow-assurance engineers develop more-economical and environmentally friendly hydrate-management strategies for deepwater operations. In this work, a model is proposed to describe the hydrate-blockage-formation behavior in testing tubing during deepwater-gas-well testing. The reliability of the model is verified with drillstem-testing (DST) data. Case studies are performed with the proposed model. They indicate that hydrates form and deposit on the tubing walls, creating a continuously growing hydrate layer, which narrows the tubing, increases the pressure drop, and finally results in conduit blockage. The hydrate-layer thickness is nonuniform. At some places, the hydrate layer grows more quickly, and this is the high-blockage-risk region (HBRR). The HBRR is not located where the lowest ambient temperature is encountered, but rather at the position where maximum subcooling of the produced gas is presented. As an example case—a deepwater gas well with a water depth of 1565 m and a gas-production rate of 45 × 104 m3/d—the hydrate blockage first forms at the depth of 150 m. In the section with a depth from 50 to 350 m, hydrates deposit more rapidly and this is the HBRR. As the water depth increases and/or the gas-flow rate decreases, the HBRR becomes deeper. Inhibitors can delay the occurrence of hydrate blockage. The hydrate problems can be handled with a smaller amount of inhibitors during deepwater well-testing operations. This work provides new insights for engineers to develop a new-generation flow-assurance technique to handle hydrate-associated problems during deepwater operations.
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