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Time-Lapse Monitoring with Satellite Data for Reservoir Management

Tamburini, Andrea *1; Minini, Marco 1; Higgs, Andy 2; Falorni, Giacomo 2; Cespa, Stefano 1
(1) Tele-Rilevamento Europa T.R.E. s.r.l, Milano, Italy. (2) TRE Canada Inc., Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Reservoir monitoring improves our understanding of reservoir behaviour and helps achieve more effective reservoir management and prediction of future performance with obvious economic benefits. It relies on an integrated approach involving both surveillance (well or surface based; seismic, electrical, leakage, flow and deformation measurements etc.) and modeling.

Volumetric changes in reservoirs due to fluid extraction and injection can induce either subsidence or uplift which could trigger fault reactivation and threaten well integrity; deformation may also be detectable at the surface.

The occurrence of surface displacements related to reservoir operations depends on its depth and the reservoir/overburden rheology. One of the most recent applications presented in this paper is relevant to the Tengiz giant oil field, Kazakhstan; in this case the top of the reservoir is about 3900 m deep.

Surface deformation monitoring can provide valuable constraints on the dynamic behaviour of a reservoir enabling the evaluation of volumetric changes in the reservoir through time. Whatever the surveying technique, the detection of millimetre level surface deformation is required to monitor small surface displacement rates, which could impact risk evaluation and land use planning.

Mapping surface effects accurately requires hundreds of measurement points per square km which cannot be delivered by traditional monitoring methods without unacceptably large expenditure. SqueeSAR™ is one of the most valuable and cost-effective techniques capable of providing high precision and high areal density displacement measurements over long periods of time, free of atmospheric artifacts. Moreover, the availability of surface displacement data from different orbits enables the estimation of both vertical and E-W horizontal displacement fields.

Some case studies (e.g. Oman, Kuwait, Kazakhstan) demonstrating the effectiveness of measuring surface deformation with satellite data for the calibration of reservoir geomechanical models will be presented.

 

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90141©2012, GEO-2012, 10th Middle East Geosciences Conference and Exhibition, 4-7 March 2012, Manama, Bahrain