Last year, events accelerated several trends in the energy landscape. Oil and gas prices have remained low, and the industry is focusing more strongly on reducing costs and increasing operational efficiency. Implementing innovative technologies that increase recovery requires a small investment but can bring large rewards.
Last year, events accelerated several trends in the energy landscape. Oil and gas prices have remained low, and the industry is focusing more strongly on reducing costs and increasing operational efficiency. Reducing costs is not only about cutting costs today but also about reducing the life-cycle cost per barrel. Implementing innovative technologies that increase recovery requires a small investment but can bring large rewards.
Advances in sensor accuracy, computing power, and data analytics unlock innovative use cases for technology for mapping subsurface movements of fluids. Very different technologies provide independent insights into the displacement process in the reservoir—for example, distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) used for periodic 4D seismic, time-lapse borehole microgravity surveys for 4D reservoir fluid mapping, DNA analytics to map interwell connectivity and zonal contributions, and interpreting downhole gauge pressure fluctuations caused by tidal forces to map fluid fronts.
The aggregation of these uncorrelated insights helps geologists and reservoir engineers narrow down the number of possible realizations of the reservoir model, better map bypassed resources, and provide forecasts that are more realistic.
On the production side, well instrumentation continues to become more affordable over time. For example: distributed temperature sensing, DAS, and downhole gauge lines can be run in a single optoelectric cable, which reduces well complexity and instrumentation costs. Wells can be instrumented at surface for less than $5,000 using wireless technologies. Wireless downhole gauges also can be retrofitted in older completions. There are many ways to leverage technology for improving production and reservoir monitoring and unlocking potential.
The OnePetro online library offers a large collection of novel use cases for technology and algorithms applied to production and reservoir monitoring. The challenge now is to transform the way we work to realize the maximum value from such technology.
This Month's Technical Papers
Recommended Additional Reading
SPE 201656 Improved Stacked Permian Development by Integrating DNA Diagnostics With Traditional Reservoir Analysis by Mathias Schlecht, Biota Technology, et al.
SPE 203398 Advances in Clamp-On Flow-Measurement Techniques by Muhammad Arsalan, Saudi Aramco
SPE 199938 Fiber-Optics Application for Downhole Monitoring and Wellbore Surveillance—SAGD Monitoring, Flow-Regime Determination, and Flow-Loop Design by Mohammad Soroush, University of Alberta, et al.
Carlos Mata, SPE, is a senior digital oilfield specialist at ADNOC Upstream. During the past 14 years, he has held roles in the areas of production support, drilling, well integrity, reservoir management, and production optimization. Mata’s latest focus has been on modeling and work-flow automation for production and reservoir management. He currently leads several digital transformation projects at ADNOC. Mata previously worked for Halliburton, Maersk Oil, and North Oil Company. He has worked in multiple assignments in Brazil, the US, the UK, Denmark, Qatar, and the UAE. Mata holds a BS degree in mechanical engineering from Universidad Simón Bolívar and an MS degree in petroleum engineering from Imperial College London. Mata is a member of the JPT Editorial Review Committee and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.