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THE UNIVERSITY OF TULSA

THE GRADUATE SCHOOL

GAS WELL PRODUCTION OPTIMIZATION USING DYNAMIC NODAL

ANALYSIS

BY

ARSENE BITSINDOU

A THESIS

APPROVED FOR THE DISCIPLINE OF

PETROLEUM ENGINEERING

By Thesis Committee

, Chairperson

i

ABSTRACT

Bitsindou Arsene (Master of Science in Petroleum Engineering)

Gas well Production Optimization using Dynamic nodal Analysis.

Directed by Dr. Mohan Kelkar

(130 words)

This work presents a numerical algorithm that permits the production optimization

of

gas wells using the concept of dynamic nodal analysis. By combining the desirable

features of nodal analysis, material balance technique and decline curve analysis, the

method is able to match the historical performance of the well data. It is also able to predict

the future performance of the gas well under the existing condition as well as altered

conditions. The proposed technique, which has several advantages over the classical nodal

analysis, can be used for the selection of the timing and capacity of surface compressor, the

evaluation of the economic viability of a well stimulation, and the understanding of the

effect of individual production component on the productivity of a gas well over the life of

that well.

ii

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. Mohan Kelkar for his invaluable

guidance and support during the course of my Master’s study. I also express my gratitude to

Dr Leslie G. Thompson of the University of Tulsa, and Stuart Cox of Marathon Co. for their

comments and suggestions and for serving on my dissertation committee.

I am grateful to Marathon Co. for providing the field data used during the test of the

computer program.

I would like to express my appreciation to all the other faculty members who

contributed to my education as a TU graduate student. I would also like to thank my

graduate student colleagues who made my life easier at TU, especially Harun Ates with who

I shared the office during the preparation of this thesis.

This dissertation is dedicated to my family whose support and encouragement will

always be appreciated.

iii

TABLE OF CONTENTS

TITLE PAGE

 

i

ABSTRACT

ii

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

 

iii

TABLE OF CONTENTS

iv

LIST OF TABLES

 

viii

LIST OF FIGURES

x

CHAPTER

I

INTRODUCTION

1

CHAPTER

II

PROCEDURE

11

2.1

Mathematical Modeling

 

11

2.1.1 History Match

11

2.1.2 Future Performance Prediction

15

2.2

Regression Analysis

 

16

2.2.1

Parameter constraints

21

 

2.2.1.1

Imaging Extension Method

22

2.3

Nodal Analysis Technique

23

2.4

Summary

 

28

iv

CHAPTER III

IMPLEMENTATION

29

3.1 Computer Program

29

3.2 Models and Correlations

30

 

3.1.1 Reservoir

30

3.1.2 Perforations

33

3.1.3 Gravel Pack

37

3.1.4 Tubing String

41

3.1.5 Subsurface Device (Subsurface Restriction)

43

3.1.6 Subsurface safety valve

44

3.1.7 Well Head Choke

45

3.1.8 Surface Pipeline

45

3.1.9 Fluid Properties

45

3.3 Sensitivity Studies With Respect to Input Parameters

47

 

3.3.1 Sensitivity With Respect to Pressures Decrement

47

3.3.2 Sensitivity With Respect to Tolerance

47

3.3.3 Sensitivity with Respect to Input Parameters in Order to

Get the Match

48

CHAPTER IV

RESULTS/VALIDATION

49

v

4.1 Synthetic Data

49

4.1.1 History Match

53

4.1.2 Sensitivity Analysis

56

 

4.1.2.1 Sensitivity of History Match Results With

Respect to Pressure Decrements

Values

56

4.1.2.2 Sensitivity of History Match Results With

Respect to Tolerance Values

59

4.1.2.3 Verification of the Robustness With

Respect to Errors

62

4.1.3

Future Performance Simulations

72

4.1.3.1 Future Performance Simulations for

Different Well Head Pressure Values

72

4.1.3.2 Future Performance Simulations for

Different Skin Values

75

4.2 Field Data

78

4.2.1

Case #1: Dry Gas Well Producing at a Constant Well

Head Pressure

78

4.2.1.1 History Match

81

4.2.1.2 Future Performance Predictions

88

vi

4.2.1.2.1 Future Performance Prediction

Using Different Well head

 

Pressure Values

88

4.2.1.2.2 Future Performance Prediction

Using Different Skin Values

91

4.2.1.2.3 Future Performance Prediction for

Different Density of

Perforation

94

4.2.2

Case #2: Conversion of Original Data from Constant

Flow Rate to Constant Well Head Pressure

97

4.2.2.1 History Match

104

4.2.2.2 Future Performance Predictions

108

4.2.2.2.1 Future Performance Prediction

Using Different Well head

Pressure Values

108

4.2.2.2.2 Future Performance Prediction

Using Different Skin Values

111

4.2.2.2.3 Future Performance Prediction

Using Different Perforated

Interval Values

114

vii

 

4.2.3.

Case #3: Conversion of Original Data from Constant

 
 

Flow Rate to Constant Well Head Pressure

117

4.2.3.1 History Match

124

4.2.3.2 Future Performance Predictions

127

4.2.3.2.1

Future Performance Prediction

 

Using Different Well head

Pressure Values

127

 

4.2.3.2.2.

Future Performance Prediction for

 

Different Perforation Density

Values

130

 

4.2.3.2.3

Future Performance Prediction

 

Using Different Perforated

Interval Values

133

 

4.2.4

Case #4: Use of the Last Two Years of Production Only

136

 

4.2.4.1 History Match

138

4.2.4.2 Future Performance Predictions

143

4.2.4.2.1 Reduction in Well Head Pressure

143

4.2.4.2.2 Reduction in Tubing Size

146

4.2.4.2.3 Choke Installation

149

CHAPTER V

CONCLUSIONS

152

viii

RECOMMENDATIONS

154

NOMENCLATURE

155

REFERENCES

158

ix

LIST OF TABLES

3.1

Gas Reservoir Inflow Performance Relationship

32

3.2

Correlations for Multiphase Flow in Pipes

42

3.3

Correlations for Flow across Chokes and Restrictions

43

3.4

Correlations for Multiphase Subcritical Flow in Subsurface

Safety Valves

44

3.5

Correlations for Fluid Physical Properties

46

4.1.1

Synthetic Data: Input Parameters

50

4.1.2

Production Synthetic Data

52

4.1.3

History Match for Synthetic data

53

4.1.4

History Match for Synthetic data #2

65

4.1.5.

System description Data for Synthetic Data #2

68

4.1.6.

Well Performance and Reservoir Pressure Data for Synthetic

Data #2

70

4.2.1.1

System description Data for Case #1

78

4.2.1.2

Well Performance and Reservoir Pressure Data for Case #1

80

4.2.1.3

History Match for Case #1

84

4.2.2.1

System Description Data for Case #2

97

4.2.2.2

Original Field Production Data for Case #2

100

ix

4.2.2.3

Converted Production Data for Case #2

101

4.2.2.4

History Match for Case #2

104

4.2.3.1

System Description Data for Case #3

117

4.2.3.2

Original Field Production Data for Case #3

119

4.2.3.3

Converted Production Data for Case #3

120

4.2.3.4

History Match for Case #3

124

4.2.4.1

System Description Data for Case #4

136

4.2.4.2

Production Data for Case #4

138

4.2.4.3

History Match for Case #4

142

x

LIST OF FIGURES

1.1

System Description and Pressure

8

2.1

Typical Inflow and Outflow Curves

26

2.2

Example of an Unstable Production Condition (Liquid Loading)

27

3.1

Structure of the Computer Program

34

3.2

Typical Perforated Hole

35

3.3

Perforated Hole Turned 90*

36

3.4

Gravel Pack Schematic

38

3.5

Details of L

40

4.1.1

Synthetic Data: Production History Match

54

4.1.2

Synthetic Data: Reservoir Pressure History Match

55

4.1.3

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Production History Match with

Respect to Pressure Decrement

57

4.1.4

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure History Match

with Respect to Pressure Decrement

58

4.1.5

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Production History Match with

Respect to

Tolerance

60

4.1.6

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure History Match

with Respect to

Tolerance

61

xi

4.1.7

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Production History Match with

 

Respect to

Errors in the Rate Data

63

4.1.8

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure History Match

with Respect to

Errors in the Rate Data

64

4.1.9

Synthetic Data #2: Sensitivity of Rate History Match with

Respect to

Errors in the Rate Data

66

4.1.10

Synthetic Data #2: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure History

Match with Respect to Errors in the Rate Data

67

4.1.11

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Well Head

Pressure

73

4.1.12

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to

Well Head Pressure

74

4.1.13

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Skin Factor

76

4.1.14

Synthetic Data: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to

Skin Factor

77

4.2.1.1

Case #1: Production History Match

82

4.2.1.2

Case #1: Reservoir Pressure History Match

83

4.2.1.A

Case #1: Production History Match

86

4.2.1.B

Case #1: Reservoir Pressure History Match

87

4.2.1.3

Case #1: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Well Head Pressure

89

xii

4.2.1.4

Case #1: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Well

 
 

Head Pressure

 

90

4.2.1.5

Case #1: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Skin Factor

 

92

4.2.1.6

Case #1: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Skin

93

4.2.1.7

Case #1: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Perforation Density

95

4.2.1.8

Case #1: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to

 

Perforation Density

 

96

4.2.2.1

Case #2: Original Field Data

 

102

4.2.2.2

Case #2: Converted Rate

 

103

4.2.2.3

Case #2: Production History Match

 

106

4.2.2.4

Case #2: Reservoir Pressure History Match

 

107

4.2.2.5

Case #2: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Well Head Pressure

 

109

4.2.2.6

Case #2: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Well

 

Head Pressure

 

110

4.2.2.7

Case #2: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Skin Factor

 

112

4.2.2.8

Case #2: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Skin

113

4.2.2.9

Case #2: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Perforated Interval

115

4.2.210

Case

#2:

Sensitivity

of

Reservoir

Pressure

with

Respect

to

 

Perforated Interval

 

116

4.2.3.1

Case #3: Original Field Data

 

122

xiii

4.2.3.2

Case #3: Converted Rate

123

4.2.3.3

Case #3: Production History Match

 

125

4.2.3.4

Case #3: Reservoir Pressure History Match

126

4.2.3.5

Case #3: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Well Head Pressure

 

128

4.2.3.6

Case #3: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Well

Head Pressure

129

4.2.3.7

Case

#3:

Sensitivity

of

Rate

with

Respect

to

Density

of

Perforation

131

4.2.3.8

Case #3: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to

Density of

Perforation

132

4.2.3.9

Case #3: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Perforated Interval

 

134

4.2.310

Case

#3:

Sensitivity

of

Reservoir

Pressure

with

Respect

to

Perforated Interval

135

4.2.4.1

Case #4: Production History Match

 

140

4.2.4.2

Case #4: Reservoir Pressure History Match

141

4.2.4.3

Case #4: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Well Head Pressure

 

144

4.2.4.4

Case #4: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Well

Head Pressure

145

4.2.4.5

Case #4: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Tubing Size

 

147

xiv

4.2.4.6 Case #4: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to

Tubing Size

148

4.2.4.7 Case #4: Sensitivity of Rate with Respect to Choke Size

150

4.2.4.8 Case #4: Sensitivity of Reservoir Pressure with Respect to Choke

Size

151

xv

CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

The production optimization of a gas well requires an appropriate selection of the

individual components in the production system. Currently nodal analysis is used to

accomplish this task. Nodal analysis involves calculating the pressure drop in individual

components within the production system so that pressure value at a given node in the

production system (e.g., bottom hole pressure) can be calculated from both ends (separator

and reservoir)

[See Figure 1.1]. The rate at which pressure is calculated at the node from

both ends must be the same. This is the rate at which the well produces. Once the rate under

existing conditions is obtained, by adjusting individual components, the sensitivity of

individual components on the overall production can be investigated; Hence an optimum

selection of components can be obtained at a given time. The major drawback of the

conventional nodal analysis is that it only provides the user with a snapshot picture of the

well production. It does not provide any information as to how the production will change

as a function of time. For example, if tubing size is changed, the nodal analysis may provide

the best tubing size at present time; however, it may not be able to indicate which tubing

size is the best over the life of the well based on the future production. Even generating

future inflow performance curves (which characterize how the reservoir will behave in the

1

2

future at discrete times) may not help since we will not be able to estimate how the rate has

changed over the time intervals.

To include the effect of time on the production performance, the most commonly

used technique is the decline curve analysis. Decline curve analysis involves matching the

prior production data using one of the decline types (exponential, hyperbolic or harmonic),

and using the estimated decline parameters, predicting the future performance under

existing conditions. Decline curve analysis is a very powerful tool, and has been used

extensively to predict the future performance by ignoring the effects of tubing size, choke,

surface pipeline or other components in the production system. In addition, although it is

true

that

decline

curve

analysis

can

predict

the

future

performance

under

existing

conditions, it may not predict how the well will behave in future if the production

conditions are altered. These alterations include, for example, changing skin factor,

changing choke size, or changing the surface compressor.

Conventional material balance techniques which uses diagnostic plots have also

been proven to be useful in understanding the behavior of the gas wells. These plots, for

example, include P/Z (reservoir pressure over compressibility factor) versus gas production

to predict how much gas the well will eventually produce. These techniques can also

account for, through a trial and error procedure, the presence of water influx. The drawback

of the material balance technique is that it does not account for time. It can predict the

production as a function of reservoir pressure, but not as a function of time. Further, it also

only accounts for reservoir component, and not for any other component of the production

system. The effect of alterations on the gas well performance cannot be predicted using the

3

material balance technique. The inclusion of time in terms of predicting the future

performance is critical from economic point of view. This cannot be accomplished using

this technique.

To overcome the drawbacks presented in the above methods, we need a technique

which can:

® Predict the future performance as a function of time in the presence of various

production components including the reservoir.

® Match

the

prior

production

data

in

the

presence

of

various

production

components so that the appropriate parameters can be assigned for future

production prediction. This is similar to decline curve analysis except that we

need to include the production components in the system.

® Quantify the uncertainties with respect to various parameters ( e.g., reservoir

permeability, skin factor, tubing roughness, drainage area, the type of pressure

drop

correlation) by generating alternate possibilities of parameters which can

match the production data.

® Predict the future performance under existing conditions as well as altered

conditions to compare the production scenarios in the future.

® Quantify the uncertainty in predicting the future performance which can be

combined with the price of gas to conduct a risk analysis.

4

® Optimize the producing well configuration so that the net profit over the life of

the well is maximized.

Some specific examples where the proposed technique can be applied are:

® Effect of Installing the Gas Compressor: As the well head pressure declines, there

may be a need to install a gas compressor at the well head. The compressor allows the

reduction of well head pressure, and hence increase in production. Various installation

alternatives that can be considered are the timing (when it will be installed), and what

capacity. Nodal analysis may indicate the possible rate of production at the existing

condition, but it does not indicate how the well will perform in the future. Installation

of the compressor will allow the operator to accelerate the production and increase the

reserves by lowering the abandonment pressure. However, for the cost benefit analysis,

we need to know how the gas production rate will change as a function of the

installation as well as the capacity of the compressor. Currently, no method is available

to evaluate the effect of compressor installation on the gas production as a function of

time.

® Fracturing or Stimulating a Gas Well: A service company will always compare the

production with and without stimulation to sell a particular stimulation procedure.

However, stimulation, typically, does not increase the reserves. It only accelerates the

production. Therefore, after stimulation, the gas well will decline faster then at the

current conditions. For proper economic evaluation, it is critical that we examine the

incremental gas production. – difference between production with stimulation minus

5

production without stimulation

(which is positive at the beginning but will become

negative at later times) as a function of time.

® Changing the Production Components: The prediction of the gas well performance

in the future is critical under existing as well as modified conditions. For example, for a

condensate gas reservoir, we would like to know when the gas well will start loading

under existing conditions so that appropriate production components can be changed

before the actual loading

occurs. These alterations include changing choke size,

changing the tubing size or reducing the well head pressure. Based on the production

scenarios under existing as well as altered conditions, a proper method can be selected

for continued gas production.

® History Matching of Prior Production Data: To instill confidence in the predictive

ability of any program, the user should be able to match the prior production from the

same gas well. Decline curve analysis essentially matches the prior production data by

using a specific model and then predicts the future performance based on prior data. In

reality, we know that significant uncertainties exist with respect to the input parameters

used for predicting the past performance. For example, the same prior production data

can be matched by either altering the permeability or skin factor, or by changing the

tubing correlation or the roughness factor. Changing the drainage area or thickness or

the porosity or saturation can all alter the possible reserves the well is capable of

producing. However, of these four components, the productivity of the well can only be

significantly affected by the thickness of the reservoir. If we want to quantify the

uncertainties in predicting the future performance, we need to develop alternate

6

scenarios – all matching the prior performance. Subsequently, these scenarios can be

used to predict the future performance of a gas well under existing as well as modified

conditions. This type of information is extremely useful in economic risk and

uncertainty analysis.

In our approach, we will assume that the operator has already conducted a decline curve

analysis using many of the commercial programs readily available. Therefore, the type of

decline (exponential, hyperbolic or harmonic) is already known. If the information is

unavailable, we can use the recommended values by Fetkovich et al 26,27 . For example,

Fetkovich et al. recommend exponential decline for high pressure gas wells (>5000 psia),

Hyperbolic decline with b value between 0.4 and 0.5 for typical gas wells, and a value

greater than 0.5 and less than 1.0 for multiple layered reservoirs.

The system considered in this work is shown in figure 1.1. It represents a single well

producing from a gas reservoir up to the separator. This system is divided into the following

completion and piping components:

ß reservoir

ß perforations

ß gravel pack

ß tubing

ß bottom hole device

ß subsurface safety valve (SSSV)

ß well head choke

7

ß surface pipeline

ß separator

8

Figure 1.1: System Description and Pressure Losses (after Brown et al.) 1
Figure 1.1: System Description and Pressure Losses (after Brown et al.) 1

9

Assumptions

The major assumptions made with respect to the flow of gas in the reservoir and the

piping system are:

ß The production system operates under pseudo-steady state conditions. The well

is flowing at a steady flow rate for a fixed average reservoir pressure and

separator pressure. This implies that the gas well produces with a fixed

liquid/gas ratio.

ß The drainage mechanism of the reservoir is assumed to be natural depletion

mechanism.

ß The production exhibits a certain type of decline during the period of time

considered in the history match computations. That decline can be exponential,

hyperbolic or harmonic according to the behavior of the reservoir under

consideration. This behavior is assessed by using the decline curve analysis

theory and the Fetkovich type curve.

ß For wet gas reservoir, it is assumed that the reservoir pressure is above the dew

point pressure. This assumption implies that the flow is single-phase gas in the

reservoir.

ß The well head pressure is reasonably constant throughout the period of time

considered for the history match.

10

ß It is assumed that the gas flows from the reservoir into the well only through a

tubing consisting of a constant inside pipe diameter. The pressure drop between

the tubing shoe and the producing interval is assumed to be negligible.

Other limitations involved in this work depend on the type of correlation selected to

compute the pressure losses across the individual component in the system. These

limitations are presented in Chapter III.

This thesis is divided into several chapters. After this introduction chapter, Chapter

II describes the

algorithm for the dynamic nodal analysis technique and details the

mathematical models as well as the regression analysis used in this technique. Chapter III

discusses the implementation of this technique into a computer program and provides

sensitivity studies with respect to input parameters. Chapter IV presents the results of the

application of the computer program to several field cases and validates the dynamic nodal

analysis technique. Finally, in Chapter V, conclusions and recommendations are provided.

11

CHAPTER II

PROCEDURE

2.1 Mathematical Modeling

The mathematical scheme used to perform dynamic nodal analysis for gas reservoirs

can be summarized in two different parts: the history match and the forecast analysis.

2.1.1 History Match

The procedure used to compute the history match is summarized in the following

steps:

1. Assume

that

the

production

history

is

known.

Thus,

for

each

observed

production time T obs1, T obs2, …, T obs j ,…, T obs n , the corresponding observed rate

Q obs1 , Q obs2 , …, Q obsj, …, Q obsn is known.

2. Assume that at time T j the following data are known:

ß reservoir pressure P j .

ß fluid properties as a function of pressure and temperature.

ß The type of decline (harmonic, hyperbolic or exponential) as well as the rate

of decline. If these are not known, assume exponential decline.

12

ß The pressure drop correlations as a function of rate for each Q.

3. The gas in place at this time T j is computed as:

where

G

 

=

V

b

*f *

S

g

j

B

gj

 
 

Z

*

T

R

*

P

B

gj

=

j

P

j

*

T

sc

sc

 

(2.1)

.

(2.2)

4. Calculate the rate Q j at which the well will produce under the existing conditions. This

is done by using the nodal analysis technique. As stated earlier, in this study the node is

chosen at the bottom hole. The nodal analysis technique is presented in section 2.3 of

this chapter.

5. Assume a small decrement in reservoir pressure DP j . The new reservoir pressure is then

P j+1 = Pj- DP j . At this reservoir pressure , calculate the new gas in place G j+1 :

G

j

+ 1

=

V

b

*

f *

S

g

B

g j + 1

.

(2.3)

The total amount of gas produced when the reservoir pressure decreases from P j to P j+1

is:

6. Calculate the rate

D

G

=

G

j

-

G

j +1

(2.4)

Q j+1 at which the well will produce under the present reservoir

pressure P j+1 . This is done by nodal analysis at bottom hole.

13

7. Knowing the total amount of gas produced (DG) and the gas flow rate Q j and Q j+1 at

reservoir pressures P j and P j+1 , we can calculate the elapsed time DT required to reach

that production.

For exponential decline:

D

For harmonic decline:

D

For hyperbolic decline:

D =

D

=

Q

j

-

Q

j

+

1

=

Q

j

-

Q

j

+

1

 

D

G

 

G

j

-

G

j + 1

 

D

T

=

1

ln

Q

j

 

D

Q

j

+ 1

 

D

=

Q

j

ln

Q

j

 

D

G

 

Q

j

+ 1

 

T

=

1

[

Q

j

-

Q

j + 1

]

 

D

 

Q

j

+ 1

(1

-

Q

j

b

)*

D

G

*

È

Í

Í

Î

1 -

Ê Q

Á

Á ˜

Ë ¯

ˆ

˜

1

j + 1

Q

j

- b

 

È

 

ˆ

- b

˘

=

b

1

*

D

*

Ê Q

Á

Á ˜

Ë ¯

Í

˙

Í Î ˚

˙

-

1

+

j

+ 1

Q

j

˜

T

˘

˙

˙

˚

(2.5)

(2.6)

(2.7)

(2.8)

(2.9)

(2.10)

The total calculated time when the reservoir pressure is P j+1 can be calculated as:

T

j

+1

=

T

j

+ D

T

.

(2.11)

14

8. Assume a new reservoir pressure P j+1 :

P j+1 = P j -DP where DP is the pressure decrement.

Repeat the process from step 4 to step 7 until the total calculated time T j+k is greater or

equal to the observed production time.

9. At this point, we have the model predicted times

T 1 , T 2 , …, T j , …T j+k , …

and the corresponding rates:

Q 1 , Q 2 , …, Q j , …, Q j+k , …

For each observed time T obs j , we calculate the corresponding model predicted rate Q’ j

by interpolating the model predicted rates.

At this point, we check how the calculated flow rate Q’ j compares with the historical

observed production rate Q obs j at the same time T obs j . This check represents the history

match of the observed data.

If significant differences exist between the calculated and the observed production, then

some selected reservoir parameters have to be adjusted in order to match the historical

performance.

In

order

to

match

the

historical

observed

performance,

a

non-linear

regression

calculation is performed to minimize the difference between calculated and observed

production. This regression analysis is discussed in section 2.2 of this chapter.

15

Once a satisfactory match between the predicted and the observed performance is

obtained, we can proceed with forecast of future performance calculations.

2.1.2 Future Performance Prediction

1. The future performance of the well under the existing conditions as well as under

altered conditions can be calculated. The procedure is the same as described from step 2

to step 8 in the History Matching section. Repeat the steps till an abandonment rate is

reached.

2. Consider different scenarios for variations in production procedures. These include, for

example, changing the number of perforations, stimulating the well, fracturing the well,

installing the compressor at the surface.

3. Predict the future performance under the new operating conditions using the same

procedure as explained in step 1.

4. Repeat step 3 for alternate combinations of input parameters to quantify uncertainties in

the prediction of future performance.

5. Compare the performance under the new scenario with the base case to calculate the

incremental gas production as a function of time.

6. Repeat step 5 for different input configuration.

7. Use information generated in step 5 and step 6 to study the economic feasibility of

making the changes in the production configuration.

16

2.2 Regression Analysis

The basic objective of using the non-linear regression in this problem is to determine the

optimum set, a, of reservoir/completion parameters such that the observed data match as

closely as possible to the calculated data from the model.

In this study, the parameters on which the regression is performed consist of any set of 3

independent variables chosen among the following parameters: permeability, skin, radius of

drainage, pay, perforated interval, radius of perforations, diameter of perforations, porosity,

water saturation, and density of perforations. For example, one can choose a such that

a={permeability, skin, radius of drainage }. In this case the regression calculations will be

performed on the following variables: permeability, skin and radius of drainage.

In this study, the Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm LMDIF1 33 , has been used. This algorithm

has been selected because it does not require to provide the derivatives of the functions to

minimize.

The purpose of LMDIF1 33 is to minimize the sum of the squares of m non-linear functions

in n variables. This is done by the more general least square solver LMDIF. The user must

provide the subroutines that compute the functions. The jacobian is then calculated by a

forward-difference approximation.

As stated earlier, in this work, the variables on which to regress are any set of 3 independent

variables chosen by the user among the following parameters: permeability, skin, radius of

drainage, pay, perforated interval, radius of perforations, diameter of perforations, porosity,

water saturation, and density of perforations.

17

So, n is equal to 3.

The m non-linear functions F 1 (a), F 2 (a), …, F m (a) can be considered as the components

of a vector FVEC. The objective function is then computed as the square of the euclidian

norm of FVEC, that is:

Objective function = SF j 2 .

The functions F j are chosen such that the computation is more resistant to errors in the

observed data and is less sensitive to outliers. The definition of the functions F j is presented

below.

Function F 1

This function compares observed data with the predicted data. Ideally the correlation

coefficient

between

the

Mathematically,

observed

r

(

F

1

Q

obs

and

model

predicted

performance

(

a

)

=

,

Q

mod

r

)

FVEC

(

Q

obs

,

Q

mod

)

-

1

=

(

COV Q

obs

,

Q

mod

)

s

Q

obs

*

s

Q

mod

(1)

= F

1

(

a

)

.

is

equal

to

1.

(2.12)

(2.13)

(2.14)

The advantage of using the correlation coefficient is that it is resistant to noise in the data. It

is not sensitive to outliers. It should be noted that high correlation coefficient does not

necessarily mean that the values are similar.

18

The basic assumption here is that we are modeling the measured data correctly that the

errors in the measured data are normally distributed with mean zero, and the errors are not

correlated.

Function F 2

This function is chosen to represent the fact that ideally the plot of Q mod versus Q obs is a

straight line of slope one ( with intercept equal to zero).

FVEC

(2)

= F

2

(

a

)

= SLOPE -

SLOPE =

(

COV Q

obs

,

Q

mod

)

s

2

obs

1

(2.15)

(2.16)

where COV is the covariance between the observed and model predicted rates. So,

Function F 3

FVEC (2) =

(

COV Q

obs

,

Q

mod

)

s

2

obs

- 1

.

(2.17)

This function is chosen to represent the fact that ideally the intercept of the straight line

Q mod versus Q obs is equal to zero.

INTERCEPT

=

Q

mod

-

SLOPE

FVEC (3)

=

Q mod

Q obs

-

1

*

Q

obs

because ideally the slope is equal to 1: SLOPE=1.

F

3

= FVEC

(3)

.

=

0

(2.18)

 

(2.19)

(2.20)

19

Function F 4

This function compares observed reservoir pressure with the predicted reservoir pressure.

Ideally the correlation coefficient between the observed and model predicted reservoir

pressure is equal to 1. Mathematically,

r

(

P

r ,

F

1

obs

(

a

)

,

P

r

,

=

r

mod

)

(

P

r

,

obs

,

P

r

,

mod

)

-

1

=

COV ( P

r ,

obs

,

P

r

,

mod

)

s

P

r ,

obs

*

s

P r

,

mod

FVEC

(4)

= F

1

(

a

)

.

(2.21)

(2.22)

(2.23)

The advantage of using the correlation coefficient is that it is resistant to noise in the data. It

is not sensitive to outliers. It should be noted that high correlation coefficient does not

necessarily mean that the values are similar.

The basic assumption here is that we are modeling the measured data correctly that the

errors in the measured data are normally distributed with mean zero, and the errors are not

correlated.

Function F 5

This function is chosen to represent the fact that ideally the plot of P mod versus P obs is a

straight line of slope one ( with intercept equal to zero).

FVEC

(5)

= F

5

(

a

)

= SLOPE -

1

(2.24)

20

SLOPE =

(

COV P

r ,

obs

,

P

r

,

mod

)

s

2

P

r

obs

(2.25)

where COV is the covariance between the observed and model predicted rates. So,

Function F 6

FVEC (5) =

COV ( P

r ,

obs

,

P

r

,

mod

)

s

2

P

r

obs

-

1 .

(2.26)

This function is chosen to represent the fact that ideally the intercept of the straight line

P mod versus P obs is equal to zero.

INTERCEPT

=

P

r

,

mod

FVEC (6)

=

-

SLOPE

P

r

,

mod

P

r

,

obs

-

1

*

P

r ,

obs

because ideally the slope is equal to 1: SLOPE=1.

F

6

= FVEC

(6)

.

=

0

(2.27)

 

(2.28)

(2.29)

Also, the user specifies the tolerance FTOL which is used in the regression. The program

terminates when the algorithm estimates either that the relative errors in the sum of squares,

SF j 2 , is at most FTOL or that the relative error between in the regression variables is at most

FTOL. On termination, the regression algorithm output an integer variable INFO whose

value means the following.

INFO = 0: improper input parameters.

21

INFO = 1: algorithm estimate that the relative error in the sum of squares is at most

FTOL .

INFO = 2: algorithm estimates that the relative error between the calculated values of the

regression parameters and the ideal solution is at most FTOL.

INFO = 3: condition for info =1 and info = 2 both hold.

INFO = 4: FVEC is orthogonal to the columns of the jacobian to machine precision.

INFO = 5: number of calls to the function that compute FVEC has reached or exceed

200*(n+1).

INFO = 6: FTOL is too small. No further reduction in the sum of squares is possible.

INFO = 7: FTOL is too small. No further improvement in the approximate solution is

possible.

2.2.1 Parameter Constraints

The Levenberg –Marquardt algorithm 33 that we use is “ unconstrained “ : i.e., variables can

be chosen to minimize the objective function with value between ± infinite. Obviously, for

our problem, we need to ensure that the values of the variables lie in the predefined interval

of uncertainty and that these values are meaningful. For example we may want the regressed

permeability value to be between K max and K min .

In order to keep the values of the regression variables in certain predefined intervals, we can

use a couple of methods. It has been shown that the use of the penalty function improves the

22

convergence of the iterative procedure; however, it is also reported that the penalty function

method may not prevent the values of the regression variables to be out of the predefined

domain when the initial estimates of the regression variables are far from the solution. In

this study, the imaging extension 19 procedure is used.

2.2.1.1 Imaging Extension Method 19

The idea behind the method is to extend the objective function in such a way that the new

objective function is defined everywhere (i.e., unconstrained) and that the solution of this

new unconstrained problem is related to the solution of the original constrained problem.

The procedure for translating the unconstrained variable estimate x LMDIF1 calculated by the

regression algorithm LMDIF1 33 to the corresponding physically constrained value of the

parameter x c is the following:

ß

For x LMDIF1 > x max , compute :

ß

For

x LMDIF1 <

x min

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

N

=

Ê x

int Á

LMDIF 1

-

x

min

Á

Ë

 

x

max

-

x

min

 

, compute :

N

= int

Ê x

Á

LMDIF 1

-

x

min

ˆ

˜

Á

Ë

x

-

max

x

min

 

¯

˜ -

After calculating N, x c can be obtained as:

ß For N odd:

.

(2.30)

 

1

.

(2.31)

23

ß For N even

x

c

= x

min

x

c

+ x

= x

max

(

+ N x

max

LMDIF 1

(

- N x

-x

max

min

-x

)

-x

min

)

LMDIF

.

1

.

(2.32)

(2.33)

For more details about the imaging extension method, the reader is referred to the

reference 19.

2.3 Nodal Analysis Technique

Nodal analysis provides a method to determine the rate at which a producing system will

perform under certain applied conditions. In order to evaluate that producing rate, the

production system is divided into two parts at a fixed node and the performance curves of

each part are compared. These two performance curves are denoted as inflow (flow into the

node) and outflow (flow out of the node) performance curves. For convenience, the node is

chosen at the bottom hole 16 . This choice does not affect the results of the performance

computations.

With the node at bottom hole, the inflow performance curve represents the pressure loss

across the reservoir, the perforations and the gravel pack. It can be mathematically

expressed in dimensionless form as:

where

Ê P

Á

Ë

WF

P

r

ˆ

˜

¯

I

=

1

-

Ê

Á

Á

Ë

P

r

-

P

- Á Ê Á

r Ë

ˆ

˜

WFS

P

˜

¯

Ê P

Á

Ë

ˆ

WF ˜

P

r

¯

I

versus

Q

Q

max

P

WFS

-

P

WF

P

r

Ê

ˆ

1

¯ Á

˜

˜

Ë

Á

=

-

P

r

-

P

WFS

P

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

-

Ê D P

Á

Ë Á P

perf

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

-

Ê D P

Á

Ë Á P

gp

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

(2.34)

(2.35).

24

Q max is the maximum flow rate at which the well can flow.

The outfow performance curve describes the pressure loss in the tubing, the bottom hole

restriction (subsurface device), the safety valve, the well head choke and the surface

pipeline. It can be mathematically expressed in dimensionless form as:

where

Ê P

Á

Ë

WF

P

r

ˆ

˜

¯

O

= Ê Á D P

P

TBG

Ë

r

ˆ

˜ +

¯

Ê

Á

Á

Ë

P

WF

P

r

Ê D P

Á

Á

Ë

REST

P

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

O

versus

Q

Q

MAX

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

+

Ê D P

Á

Á

Ë

P

SV

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

+

Ê D P

Á

Á

Ë

CHOKE

P

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

+

Ê D P

Á

Á

Ë

PIPELINE

P

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

.

(2.36)

(2.37)

A typical plot of the inflow curve as well as the two commonly observed outflow curves is

shown in Figure 2.1.

The overall performance of the producing system is obtained when the inflow and outflow

curves intercept. This implies that the flow rate and the bottom hole flowing pressure are

obtained by solving the equation:

Á Ê

Á Ë

P WF

P

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

I

Ê

= Á

Á

Ë

P WF

P

r

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

O

(2.38)

This equation is solved numerically using the secant method 16 .

As can be seen on Figure 2.1 and Figure 2.2, this equation can have two different roots or

one single root.

25

If the equation has two different roots, the root corresponding to the lower flow rate

represents an unstable production condition while the root corresponding to the higher flow

rate represents a stable production condition. This situation is typical of system producing in

two-phase flow with high gas velocity.

If the equation has a single root, one of the following situations can happen:

The derivative of the outflow curve at the root is positive. In this case the system

produces under a stable condition. This is typical of systems close to single-phase flow.

The derivative of the outflow curve at the root is negative. In this case the system

produces under an unstable condition (liquid loading).

26

26 Figure 2.1. Typical Inflow and Outflow Curves 1 6 .

Figure 2.1.

Typical Inflow and Outflow Curves 16 .

27

Ê P ˆ Á wf ˜ Ë P ¯ r
Ê P
ˆ
Á wf
˜
Ë P ¯
r

0

Figure 2.2

Inflow curve Outflow curve C Unstable rate Ê Q ˜ ˆ Á Ë ¯ Q
Inflow curve
Outflow curve
C
Unstable rate
Ê
Q
˜
ˆ
Á
Ë
¯
Q max

Example of an Unstable Production Condition (Liquid Loading)

28

2.4 Summary

In this chapter, the dynamic nodal analysis procedure has been presented. The mathematical

models used in the history match and forecast algorithms have been detailed. In addition,

the regression analysis method used in the computer program has been discussed. Finally, a

brief description of the conventional nodal analysis technique has been reviewed.

29

CHAPTER III

IMPLEMENTATION

3.1 Computer Program

A computer program has been developed that implements the mathematical procedures

discussed in the previous section. After all the data describing all the components of the

system has been provided, the computer program can conduct the dynamic nodal analysis

calculations (history match, sensitivity analysis) as well as classic static nodal analysis. The

computer program described in this section is tested with synthetic as well as field data; the

results of these test are presented in Chapter IV. The general structure of the computer

program is presented in Figure 3.1. An important consideration in the computer program

development

has

been

to

provide

a

user-friendly

environment

and

an

algorithmic

architecture which is easy to maintain and expand. This is realized by providing a flexible

and interactive procedure to input, modify and view the data describing each component of

the system as well as allowing to save the results in the restart files which can be used for

future sensitivity analysis and forecast studies. The program is easy to maintain because of

its modularity which allows each specific problem to be handled by specific subroutines.

30

Start30 Select option -Dynamic nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis New well Dynamic nodal analysis Select

Select option -Dynamic nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis
Select option -Dynamic nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis
Select option -Dynamic nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis

Select option -Dynamic nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis

New well
New well
nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis New well Dynamic nodal analysis Select option -Input/Display data
nodal analysis -New well -Conventional analysis New well Dynamic nodal analysis Select option -Input/Display data

Dynamic nodal analysis

well -Conventional analysis New well Dynamic nodal analysis Select option -Input/Display data -Modify data -History

Select option -Input/Display data -Modify data -History match -Forecast -Conventional nodal analysis

Conventional nodal analysis

Conventional nodal analysis

Conventional nodal analysis
Conventional nodal analysis
Select option -Input/Display data -Modify data -Forecast -Conventional nodal analysis
Select option
-Input/Display data
-Modify data
-Forecast
-Conventional nodal analysis

Select option -Input/Display data -Modify data -Conventional nodal analysis

Results No Yes Do you want to save results in a restart file? Enter a
Results
No
Yes
Do you want to save results in
a restart file?
Enter a restart file name
End

Figure 3.1

Structure of the computer program

31

In addition, an error file is included which contains eventual error messages if the ranges or

the limitations of the correlations and model selected are surpassed.

3.2 Models and Correlations

In this section the models and correlations used in the computer program to compute the

pressure drops in each components of the system are presented. A special consideration is

given to the limitations involved in these models and correlations.

3.2.1 Reservoir

The flow in the reservoir is considered to be single phase gas. This assumes that the

reservoir pressure is above the dew point throughout the well production time in the case of

wet gas reservoirs. The pressure drops across the reservoir porous media are computed by

an inflow performance relationship (IPR) using Darcy’s law modified by Jones, Blount and

Glazes 12 and expressed in terms of pseudo-real pressure. This equation which takes into

account the turbulent effect as well as the damage effect (skin), relates the reservoir pressure

to the sand-face pressure.

(

m P

R

)

-

m P

(

wfs

)

=

a

*

Q

2

+

b

*

Q

(3.1)

where Q is in MMscf/D. The coefficients a and b are defined as,

a =

3.166 *10

-

6

*

b

*

g

g

* T

H

p

2

*

R

w

* m

(3.2)

32

where b is defined as,

b =

1.424*10 * T Ê Á ln

H

6

K

*

Á

Ë

R

e

3

-

R

w

4

b =

2.33*10

10

K

1.201

.

ˆ

+ S ˜

˜

¯

The pseudo-real pressure is defined as follows:

m P

(

) =

P

Ú

P base

2* P

m

g

* Z

* dP .

(3.3)

(3.4)

(3.5)

It should be noted that, in general, the IPR calculated with data obtained from well test

analysis usually gives a better description of the reservoir performance.

33

Table 3.1 Gas reservoir inflow performance relationship used

IPR

Range of

Requirements

Advantages

Applicability

Darcy's law modified by Jones et al.

single phase flow

Properties describing the reservoir

May be expressed in terms of pseudo-real pressure. Damage and high velocity effects are included.

34

3.2.2 Perforations

The computer program computes the pressure drop across the perforations using Mc-Leod’s

method 11 . This equation takes into account the pressure losses across the compacted zone. It

does not account for the converging effect of the flow near the well bore.

Several assumptions are made in this method such as:

1. The permeability of the crushed zone or compacted zone is:

ß 10 % of the formation permeability if the well is perforated under overbalanced

conditions.

ß 40 % of the formation permeability if the well is perforated under underbalanced

conditions.

2. The thickness of the crushed zone is ½ inch.

3. The small perforation hole is producing under steady state conditions.

Figure 3.2 and Figure 3.3 show a typical perforated hole.

The equation for the pressure losses across the perforations is:

m P

(

wfs

)

-

m P

(

wf

)

=

a

*

Q

2

+

b

*

Q

(3.6)

where Q = flow rate/perforation (Mscf/D). The coefficients a and b are defined as,

a =

3.16 *10

- 12

*

b

*

g

*

T

Ê

* Á

Á

Ë

1

R

P

-

1

ˆ

˜

C ˜

R

¯

Lp

2

* m

(3.7)

35

where

b =

3

1.424 *10 *

T

*

Ê

Á

Á

ln

R

C

ˆ

˜

˜

¯

Ë

R

P

K

P

*

L

P

b =

2.33*10

10

1.201

.

K

p

(3.8)

(3.9)

36

36 Figure 3.2: Typical Perforated Hole (after Brown et al.) 1

Figure 3.2: Typical Perforated Hole (after Brown et al.) 1

37

37 Figure 3.3: Perforated Hole Turned 90* (after Brown et al) 1

Figure 3.3: Perforated Hole Turned 90* (after Brown et al) 1

38

3.2.3 Gravel Pack

The pressure drop across the gravel pack is computed using the Jones, Blount and Glazes

equation modified by Brown for single-phase gas. This simple model takes into account the

pressure losses from the perforation tunnel to the liner. It also accounts for the turbulent

flow regime (high velocity flow). In addition, Brown provides some guidelines about the

estimation of the gravel pack effective permeability as a function of the gravel size. Figure

3.4 displays the typical gravel pack schematic.

The equation is:

m P

(

wfs

)

-

m P

(

wf

)

=

a

*

Q

2

+

b

*

Q

(3.10)

where Q is in Mscf/D. The coefficients a and b are defined as,

a =

1.247 *10

-

10

*

b

*

g

g

*

T

*

L

A

2

* m

(3.11)

39

39 Figure 3.4. Gravel Pack Schematic (after Brown et al) 1

Figure 3.4. Gravel Pack Schematic (after Brown et al) 1

40

where

3

8.93 *10 *

T

*

L

K

G

*

A

1.47 *10

7

 

.

b =

K

0.55

G

b =

(3.12)

(3.13)

Figure 3.5 provides the details to calculate the linear flow path L.

41

41 Figure 3.5: Details of L (after Brown et al) 1

Figure 3.5: Details of L (after Brown et al) 1

42

3.2.4 Tubing String

The pressure drop across the tubing string is computed with commonly used multiphase

flow correlations in the literature. Table 3.2 summarizes the correlations 2 used in the

computer program. Also shown, in that table, are the ranges of applicability of each