Prediction and Evaluation of Sanding and Casing Deformation in a GOM-Shelf Well
- I. Ispas (BP America) | A.R. Bray (BP America) | I.D. Palmer (BP America) | N.G. Higgs (Higgs Technologies)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- February 2005
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 75 - 78
- 2005. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 1.13 Casing and Cementing, 2.1.3 Sand/Solids Control, 1.8 Formation Damage, 2 Well Completion, 1.2.2 Geomechanics, 5.1.2 Faults and Fracture Characterisation, 3.2.3 Hydraulic Fracturing Design, Implementation and Optimisation, 5.6.4 Drillstem/Well Testing, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 2.1.6 Frac and Pack, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 2.1.5 Gravel pack design & evaluation, 5.3.4 Integration of geomechanics in models, 2.1.1 Perforating, 5.8.3 Coal Seam Gas, 3.2.5 Produced Sand / Solids Management and Control, 5.8.5 Oil Sand, Oil Shale, Bitumen
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Technology Today Series articles are general, descriptive representations that summarize the state of the art in an area of technology by describing recent developments for readers who are not specialists in the topics discussed. Written by individuals recognized as experts in the area, these articles provide key references to more definitive work and present specific details only to illustrate the technology. Purpose: to inform the general readership of recent advances in various areas of petroleum engineering.
Sand production is an important well-completion issue affecting well economics and, possibly, casing stability. This study compares predictions of sanding and casing deformation for a well in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico (GOM) shelf prepared before completion of the well with the results of a post-sanding event for this well. The sanding event was predicted adequately considering the uncertainty of the data entered into the model. The casing deformation monitored by the post-sanding survey also was consistent with the prediction of helical buckling caused by depletion of fluids only when cavities of vertical extent greater than 7 ft exist (e.g., because of sand production) around the wellbore. This study supports the use of these predictive methods in well-completion design.
The driver for this study is a concern that sand production from GOM wells in weak sands may lead to casing failure. In Ekofisk, for example, casing failures caused by compaction have been studied, but these failures were not caused by solids production. There have been surprisingly few papers written about casing failures correlated with sand production. One is the Canadian heavy-oil-sands work, although it addresses massive amounts of sand produced (thousands of barrels). For this paper, we found an opportunity to assemble different aspects that had been studied separately into a more complete technical analysis. The subject has gained importance recently because of a renewed interest in managing sand production from wells rather than installing costly gravel packs.
Oil and/or gas production in weakly consolidated sandstone formations can lead to sand production when the reservoir pressure is depleted to the point at which the effective stress on the near-wellbore region exceeds the formation disaggregation strength. Sand production can lead to costly wellbore-cleanup operations, erosion damage to tubing and surface equipment, and significant sand-handling expenses. Thus, the prediction of sanding is an important design consideration when deciding whether a well should be completed with sand-control measures.
This Technology Today Series paper is based on paper 78236 prepared for the 2002 SPE/ISRM Rock Mechanics Conference.
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