Video: Optimizing LWD Fluid Sampling With a New Transient Approach: The Reciprocal Contamination Derivative
- Camilo Gelvez (The University of Texas at Austin) | Carlos Torres-Verdín (The University of Texas at Austin)
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- Society of Petroleum Engineers
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- 2019. Copyright is retained by the author. This presentation is distributed by SPE with the permission of the author. Contact the author for permission to use material from this video.
- Transient Analysis, Logging-While-Drilling, Fluid Cleanup and Sampling, Reservoir Characterization, Reciprocal Contamination Derivative
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Successful in-situ fluid cleanup and sampling operations are commonly driven by a fast and reliable analysis of pressure, rate, and contamination measurements. Currently, techniques such as pressure transient analysis (PTA) and rate transient analysis (RTA) provide important information to quantify reservoir complexity, whereas fluid contamination measurements are overlooked for reservoir characterization purposes. The objective in this paper is to introduce a new interpretation technique to relate fluid contamination measurements with reservoir properties by identifying early- and late-time flow regimes in the derivative plots of reciprocal fluid contamination. Among several applications, this new transient analysis method is effective for improving logging-while-drilling (LWD) fluid sampling operations.
The derivative methods used in PTA and RTA inspired the development of the new fluid contamination interpretation method. Contamination transient analysis (CTA) evaluates transient measurements acquired during mud-filtrate invasion cleanup to infer reservoir geometry. We apply derivative methods to the reciprocal of the time evolution of fluid contamination to identify flow regimes in cases of water-based mud invading either water-or hydrocarbon-saturated formations. LWD operations are considered under a continuous invasion effect, i.e. the fluid cleanup procedure is performed while mud filtrate continues to invade the formation. This constraint brings about a significant technical challenge for LWD fluid sampling jobs. Alternatively, this new method could be integrated with other pressure transient techniques to improve the interpretation of measurements. For example, in a pretest case where the pressure transient does not achieve the radial flow regime, fluid cleanup could provide complementary information about late-time flow regimes to enhance the acquisition of measurements in real time.
We document synthetic and field examples of applications of a new interpretation method. Seven reservoir cases are simulated to obtain contamination data: (1) homogeneous isotropic reservoir, (2) formation thickness, (3) laminated formations, (4) geological faults, (5) mud-filtrate invasion (6) reservoir properties, and (7) permeability anisotropy. All these cases are compared for single-phase and multiphase flow during LWD fluid sampling operations. Additionally, field case studies are analyzed to highlight the value of the reciprocal contamination derivative (RCD) in real-time operations. Reservoir limits and features such as saturating fluid and depth of invasion are identified in the flow regimes detected with derivative plots of the reciprocal of the contamination. Consequently, LWD cleanup and sampling efficiency could be optimized based on contamination transient analysis by identifying the flow regimes taking place in the reservoir during filtrate cleanup, hence improving the prediction of the time required to acquire non-contaminated fluid samples.
The new approach of the reciprocal contamination derivative is an alternative way to optimize fluid cleanup efficiency and to quantify the spatial complexity of the reservoir during real-time LWD operations. In addition, this new technique enables the evaluation of reservoir properties in less operational time than PTA without the need of pressure build-up stages, increasing fluid sampling efficiency in terms of quality and time.