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SureVIEW WIRE system extends life of nearby wells in California field

27th October 2015

Using the Baker Hughes SureVIEW well integrity real-time evaluation (WIRE) system, an operator is extending the life of several wells in a troublesome California reservoir and improving their ultimate hydrocarbon recovery rates.

The SureVIEW WIRE fiber-optic line
The SureVIEW WIRE fiber-optic line

A combination of subsidence and the presence of a shearing zone was continually compromising completed wells, often resulting in well loss. After repeated trial-and-error efforts to enhance structural integrity in the wellbore, the operator implemented the SureVIEW WIRE system. The system uses a highly sensitive fiber-optic cable that can detect and differentiate minute strain changes in the well, including those resulting from compaction, shearing forces, buckling, and tubular deformations, thus helping personnel identify and diagnose in-well conditions.

The SureVIEW WIRE fiber-optic line was prepared at a Baker Hughes facility before being shipped to the wellsite, ensuring top-quality splices and minimizing rig time. Once onsite, it was run into the well along the outside of the casing to a depth of 1,536 ft (468 m), so the Baker Hughes team could closely observe wellbore conditions across the Diatomite and Tulare geological interface. The SureVIEW WIRE system was then cemented in place and brought online.

“As the system relayed data back to surface, it became clear that there was a strong correlation between the compaction signal the SureVIEW WIRE system was measuring and the voidage due to near-wellbore production and injection activities,” says Roger Duncan, Baker Hughes global product line manager for optical monitoring. “Using this information, the operator was able to effectively zero out the compaction and extend the life of all nearby wells by making adjustments to the near-wellbore injection program.

“Prolonging the life of wells also meant additional dollars saved by reducing drilling expenditures. Even more importantly, this field has been produced by water flooding for decades, but this is the first time the operator actually understands fully what the injection program is doing. Satellite measurements of the surface are aggregates that might show a relatively stable level of subsidence. But we now know that the in-well environment is much more dynamic than anyone ever imagined. Now we can directly observe what the injection is doing to the rock, down to the centimeter level. There is no better injection profiling tool. This information is critical to optimizing sweep efficiency, which can greatly improve ultimate recovery.”

The operator has continued to use the SureVIEW WIRE system, while also installing a second system to extend this solution to a greater part of thefield. A wider installation campaign is currently being planned.


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