--> Decision Driven Surface-Subsurface Collaboration in Field Surveillance with a Competitive Mindset

AAPG Middle East Region GTW, Maximizing Asset Value: Integrating Geoscience with Reservoir Management & Facilities Optimization

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Decision Driven Surface-Subsurface Collaboration in Field Surveillance with a Competitive Mindset


Petroleum Development Oman’s “A” Fields Asset, in The Sultanate of Oman, is the world’s first commercial solar steam EOR project. Steam generated from massive solar panels get injected at high pressure and temperature downhole in order to enhance recovery of highly viscous oil molecules from multistage high net-to-gross Cambrian braided fluvial sands bounded by faults and fractures. The ongoing operating mechanisms are Steam Flood for the West field (inverted 7- spot, 3.3 acre / 10 acre spaced wells) while Cyclic Steam Soak (CSS - ‘huff and puff’) for the East field (~90m regularly spaced self CCS wells). Since the inception of development in 1980s, the Fields now host more than 500 wells (verticals and horizontals) comprising of steam injectors, oil producers, aquifer pump-offs, permanent observation wells (microseismic, temperature and pressure); with an ever expanding in-fill and near filed drilling opportunities. The key to monitor the reservoir performance of such a large scale complex development is to have a robust cost focused decision based competitive surveillance plan. Defining a minimum technical scope and then adding on value based data requirement has now been implemented. Quality data acquisition includes, but not limited to, quantification of reservoir quality, fluid properties, real time heat distribution (for both vertical and areal conformance), steam quality testing, time lapse de-saturation (to monitor sweep efficiency), well testing, well integrity, pressure distribution monitoring; geochemical analysis (mitigate scaling; fingerprinting); particle size analysis (mitigate sanding challenges); micro-seismicity monitoring (to maintain cap rock integrity and containment); and so on. Emphasis is given to ensure efficient data acquisition / job execution, within in a limited / shared resource environment, without jeopardizing safety and oil production. The asset team drives the process through seamless collaboration with cross functional disciplines (petroleum engineering, well engineering, well services, operations, production programmers, contracts-procurement and vendors), to ensure that the right data comes to the right place at the right point of time! For a Brown field like “A”, a lot of legacy data, time lapse data have been acquired so far. Focus is now on digitalization and faster Data Analytics to convert massive meaningful data into decisions and maximize asset value. Application of original algorithms and tools (exception based surveillance) to convert the data into meaningful insights to impact efficiency, production and safety has been embraced. In this submission, we will provide the high level overview of the mentioned technologies and will also focus on learning from some of the key surveillance technologies. As an example, pattern recognition techniques from Microseismic data aids monitoring the ‘cap-rock’ integrity and reservoir containment to maintain HSE standard and integrity of the assets. Another example is the implementation of Automatic Beam-Pump Optimization which has resulted in step-changes in terms of both oil production and reduced manpower requirements and has given a competitive advantage. At the core of reservoir management there lies a live subsurface integrated model (incorporating essentials of geology, petrophysics, geomechanics, reservoir engineering), which brings in the subsurface insights every time the team collaborates to take a decision. Decision based surveillance strategy execution is continuously facilitating asset management, highlighting opportunities, reducing uncertainty and maximizing value - as we follow the data journey from scoping to decision making to impact the ‘bottom-line’. Quality data, data analytics and collaboration remain the key enabler with emphasis shifting more to competitive scoping, automation and digitalization. Building strong ‘win-win’ partnership with all the stake holders enables optimizing capital expenditure (‘doing more with less’) and lowers operating cost (‘lower for ever’). And, the journey is ever ending, getting more complex and challenging; however through our surveillance efforts and cross functional collaboration we retain the trust with our reservoir for the long term value creation.