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Wireless Downhole Gauges Help Maximize Value of Appraisal Test in Abandoned Well

This paper describes the acquisition and interpretation of long-term pressure-buildup data in a plugged and abandoned deepwater appraisal well. To accomplish the test objectives at an acceptable cost, a novel combination of well testing, wireless-gauge technology, and material-balance techniques was used to allow the collection and interpretation of reservoir-pressure data over a planned period of 6 to 15 months following the well test. The final buildup duration was 428 days (14 months).

Introduction

Three interpretation methods of increasing complexity were used to provide insights into the reservoir. First, material balance was used to produce an estimate of the minimum connected reservoir volume. The advantage of material balance is that it requires very few input assumptions and produces a high-confidence result. Second, analytical models in commercial pressure-transient-analysis software were used to investigate near-wellbore properties and distances to boundaries. Finally, finite-difference-simulation models were used to investigate reservoir properties and heterogeneity throughout the entire tested volume. With increasing model complexity came additional insights into the reservoir properties and architecture but reduced solution uniqueness.

A key complication for the interpretation of the recorded pressure data was the potential for gauge drift. This was incorporated into the uncertainty range used in all three interpretation methods.

This article, written by Special Publications Editor Adam Wilson, contains highlights of paper SPE 192053, “Maximizing Value of an Appraisal DST: Recording a 10,000-Hour Buildup in an Abandoned Well Using Wireless Downhole Gauges,” by Stuart Walters, SPE, Gavin Ward, and Mike Cullingford, SPE, Chevron, prepared for the 2018 SPE Asia Pacific Oil and Gas Conference and Exhibition, Brisbane, Australia, 23–25 October. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
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Wireless Downhole Gauges Help Maximize Value of Appraisal Test in Abandoned Well

01 February 2019

Volume: 71 | Issue: 2

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