Executive Summary

Syed A. Ali

As you receive this issue of SPE Production & Operations, I hope you are making plans to attend the 2006 SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, to be held in the lovely city of San Antonio, Texas. The annual meeting provides attendees the opportunity to observe firsthand the latest technologies being developed for challenging deepwater offshore drilling, completion, and production operations. In addition, the technologies currently in use onshore or offshore are constantly being modified and adapted to meet new challenges.

This year’s technical sessions offer a chance to hear about the latest advances and unique technical applications in one’s area of technical interest. Furthermore, the meeting provides an opportunity to catch up with old friends and make new ones and, best of all, to keep abreast of new technology.

As customary, the editorial committee for SPEPO will hold a meeting to discuss the status of the journal and the issues related to providing the readership with the latest technical information in a timely manner. These meetings are often lively as we discuss the problems relating to the journal and their possible solutions. I extend to you a personal invitation to join our meeting and participate in formulating the future vision for SPEPO. Please contact the SPE Technical Publications Dept. (peer@speservicecorp.org) or me for meeting details.

Leading off this issue is a paper on acidizing: A New Effective Stimulation Treatment for Long Horizontal Wells Drilled in Carbonate Reservoirs discusses the effective stimulation of 45 horizontal wells with openhole completions in two offshore fields in Saudi Arabia by use of a new treatment system. The components of this new system include HCl acid and viscoelastic surfactant.

The next paper, Stabilizing Wellbores in Unconsolidated, Clay-Laden Formations, presents the results of laboratory and field testing performed to determine the feasibility and effectiveness of applying a one-component, low-viscosity consolidation material to stabilize the unconsolidated formation sand surrounding a wellbore and to overcome the effects of cyclic loading while minimizing the permeability reduction.

The effect of water cut on sand production has been an area of interest for a number of years, and several mechanisms have been proposed to explain the effect. Effect of Water Cut on Sand Production—An Experimental Study presents the results of a series of laboratory perforation-collapse tests designed to quantify the effect of water cut on perforation failure and the resulting sand production.

The next paper, The Key to Predicting Emulsion Stability: Solid Content, presents a method for quantifying the factors governing the emulsion stability by coupling the standard bottle-test results with corresponding crude-oil analytical data. Furthermore, statistical analysis by means of partition trees produces emulsion-stability descriptions.

Oil/Water Separation Experience From a Large Oil Field presents the results of a comprehensive study initiated to understand the main causes of emulsion formation in the field and ways to optimize oil/water separation. Many lessons learned from this study are applicable to any crude-oil-treating facilities.

Hydrocarbon production from well clusters, in which several wells flow into one subsea flowline, often requires flow control for each well. Knowing the actual performance of manifold chokes is of vital importance for optimum production. Critical and Subcritical Oil/Gas/Water Mass Flow Rate Experiments and Predictions for Chokes presents a predictive model based on a a large database on critical and subcritical flow through orifice- and cage-type chokes. The data were obtained by use of the multiphase flow loop. The model appears to be best model in predicting the mass flow rate through the orifice- and cage-choke geometries. A comparison with other models is presented also.

The development of unstable flow in multiphase pipelines is a major and expensive problem for the oil and gas industry. Irregular flow results in poor oil/water separation and limits the production capacity.Modeling of Severe Slug and Slug Control With OLGA presents a model of the physical process that generates slug. The model has been verified against the experimental data. Several control strategies have been tested on the model, and results are presented.

The next paper, Well Surveillance With a Permanent Downhole Multiphase Flowmeter, presents field-test results of a new type of downhole multiphase flowmeter. The results confirm the value of permanent downhole metering. Well performance and its evaluation are some of the most important functions of production engineering.

The Dimensionless Productivity Index as a General Approach to Well Evaluation presents a general approach to well evaluation by employing the field-derived, dimensionless productivity index, which is calculated from measured information that includes production rate, reservoir and flowing pressures, and well and reservoir data.

The paper Optimization of Riser Design and Drill Centers With a Coupled Reservoir and Facility-Network Model for Deepwater Agbami presents a tool and methodology for better modeling of the well-to-riser flow and the optimization of rise count and configuration.

And, finally, we have a Discussion of A Practical Method for Anticipating Asphaltene Problems and one of the original authors' responses to the discussion. These articles present thoughtful consideration of a previously published SPE paper and the original author’s response to those considerations. SPE encourages discussions of this nature because it stimulates and promotes the learning environment. In fact, the new online version of each SPE journal has a discussion forum in which you can post your thoughts on each paper published in a particular issue. For more information, refer to www.spe.org. As ever, if you have any comments—positive or negative—about the content of this issue, I encourage you to send them to me at syed@chevron.com. Do not forget to register for this year’s SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition in September. Happy reading!

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Errata

The Acknowledgment section of Aron Behr et al.’s “Consideration of a Damaged Zone in a Tight Gas Reservoir Model With Hydraulically Fractured Well,” paper 82298, which appeared in the May 2006 issue of SPE Production & Operations contained an incorrect company affiliation.  The corrected acknowledgment is included here:

The authors would like to thank the German Soc. for Petroleum and Coal Science and Technology for organizing and funding this work. We particularly appreciate the help from the participating companies: the Gaz de France [formerly Preussag Energie (Lingen)], Wintershall AG (Kassel), RWE DEA (Hamburg), Erdöl-Erdgas GmbH (Berlin), and ExxonMobil Production Deutschland GmbH [formerly BEB (Hannover)].

We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.