A P I TITLE*VT-b

94

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GAS OF THE LIFT BOOK 6
CATIONAL TRAINING SERIES
THIRD EDITION, 1994

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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0732290 0532825 77T

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API GAS LIFT MANUAL
Book 6 of the Vocational Training Series Third Edition, 1994

Issued by AMERICAN PETROLEUM INSTITUTE Exploration & Production Department
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FOR INFORMATION CONCERNING TECHNICAL CONTENT OF THIS PUBLICATION CONTACT THE API EXPLORATION & PRODUCTION DEPARTMENT, 700 NORTH PEARL, SUITE 1840 (LB-382), DALLAS, TX 75201-2831 - (214) 953-1101. SEE BACK COVER FOR INFORMATION CONCERNING HOW TO OBTAIN ADDITIONAL COPIES OF THIS PUBLICATION.

Users of this publication should become familiar with its scope and content. This document is intended to supplement rather than replace individual engineering judgment.

OFFICIAL PUBLICATION

REG U.S. PATENT OFFICE

Copyright O 1994 American Petroleum Institute

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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. at the time of this writing. As the name implies. A second edition was issuedin 1984.A P IT I T L E * V T . Exxon Production Research Company Joe Clegg. with an It includes information on the basic principles of gas lift.lift gas is the only one the artificial lift systems that does not some formof mechanical pump of use to physically force the fluid from one place to another. W.```.`. gas lift of this has certain advantages over the other systems in some instances and occupies a rather unique and important place as a lift mechanism. how be Information is also includedon monitoring...``. It is intended to familiarize operating personnel the useof gas lift as artificial lift system. and trouble-shooting gas lift equipment. and a gas lift system should designed.`.6 94 m 0732290 0532827 542 m FOREWORD Artificial l i f t represents an increasingly important part of the oil business. .`.. R.`--- Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. Exploration & Production Department.. American Petroleum Institute. Because phenomenon.````. regulating. Winkler. It was developed with assistance by volunteer technical reviewers including: J. R.`.. In fact. and gas lift.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. in of This third edition was developed asan editorial update for consistency with recentAPI gas lift standards. Pectin International John Martinez. This manualis underthejurisdiction of theExecutiveCommitteeonTraining and Development. Consultant Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. and editorial errata were published in 1986 and incorporated a 1988 reprint the manual. adjusting. Blann.-`-`. The four basic types artificial lift used in the oil industry are: rod pumping. over 90% of the oil wells in the United States used some form of artificial lift. The first editionof this manual was issued in 1965.`. how various types of gas lift equipment work. Lead Reviewer J. Consultant. Bennett. Production Associates H. the choice of gas lift equipment. hydraulic pumping. of electric submersible pumping.

`--- Book 3: Subsurface Salt Water Injection und Disposal. Methods of evaluation and control measures are described in detail Spiral bound. Orifices.adjustmentproceduresand trouble-shooting diagnostic tools and location of problem areas for gas lift operations. Design criteria and formulae are given for gathering systems. The commonly used gas pressure operated bellows valve is also covered. including bellows charged valves production in pressure (fluid) service should be repaired according to these guidelines. Soft cover. 6 ’ / 2 x 10. 72 pages. Second Edition.```.`. Specification for Gas Lift Valves.6 94 D 0732290 OS32828 489 m Other publications in the API Vocational Training Series are: Book 1: Introduction to Oil and Gas Production.oxygencorrosion. 67 pages. --`````. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.``. 8 ’ / 2 x 1 1 . 1983 (Reaffirmed 1988) Thispopularorientationmanualcontains81pagesandover 100 photographs and line drawings. It is written as a simple. soft cover. spiral bound. and dummy valves. 6l/2 x IO.API T I T L E x V T . and Trouble-Shooting of Gas Lift Installations Coversrecommendedpracticeonkickoffandunloading. treating plants.````. 87 pages.`. Economic considerations are presented. soft cover.`.. RP 1 1V7.. The designer is referredto the API “Gas Lift Manual” (Book 6 of the Vocational Training Series) and to the various API 1 1V recommended practices on gas lift. reverse flow valves. RP 1 1V6. easy-to-understand style to help orient and train inexperienced oil and gas production personnel.operation. 1990 Generalaspects of corrosion. The book is also helpful to students. Second Edition 1978 (Reaffirmed 1986) Ahandbookfortheplanning. orifices. It presents guidelines related to the repair and reuse of valves. Testing and Setting Gas Lift Valves This document applies to repair. Spiral bound. spiral bound. Book 5: Wireline Operations and Procedures..`. It explains and outlines the application of these tools in wireline operations.andelectrochemical corrosion are thoroughly covered. Recommended Practice for Design Continuous Flow Gas Lift Installations Using of Injection Pressure Operated Valves Thisrecommendedpracticeisintended to setguidelinesforcontinuousflowgas lift installation designs using injection pressure operated valves. including those operations conducted offshore. 6I/2 x 1 O .sweetcorrosion. and businesses allied with the oil and gas industry.`. Fourth Edition. The fourth edition represents a complete revision and updating of the previous edition. and setting gas lift valves and reverse flow (check) valves. these practices are intended to serve both repair shops and operators. Maintenance.. Soft cover. API Specs & RPs (Users should check the latest editions) Spec 1 1 VI. . Recommended Practice for Repair..installation. testing. The assumption is that the made designer is familiar with and has available data on the various factors that affect a design.. The book includes a glossary and bibliography. and injection facilities. uncluttered manner. 1 S illustrations. RP 1 1 V5. Recommended Practice for Operation.andmaintenance of subsurface injection and disposal systems. industry office personnel. Other valves.. It isabasicmanual presented in a simple. 1983 (Reaffirmed 1988) This handbook describes the various surface and subsurface wireline tools and equipment used in the oil and gas industry. Book 2: Corrosion of Oil and Gas Well Equipment.-`-`. Second Edition.. 90 illustrations. Alternative equipment and methods are discussed and illustrated. Reverse Flow Valves and Dummy Va1ves Covers specifications on gas lift valves.

..........................................................-`-`.......................................................................... INTRODUCTION TO ARTIFICIAL LIFT AND GAS LIFT BASIC PRINCIPLES OF OIL PRODUCTION.......................................................................................................................................... Technical Development of Gas Lift Equipment......................................................... 27 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.......................................................................... WELL OUTFLOW PERFORMANCE PREDICTION .........................................WELL PERFORMANCE INTRODUCTION .................... ARTIFICIAL LIFT .............................................. 25 Poettmann and Carpenter Correlation .``.............`................... Vogel’s Example Problem.......................................... 26 Published General Type Correlations....`... ................................................................................. Continuous Flow Gas Lift............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 23 Empirical Data ............................................................................ Differential Valves ....................................................................................................... 23 Dimensionless Parameters ..........................................`...I............................ INFLOW PERFORMANCE PREDICTION .................................................... 23 Importance of Reliable Well Test Data... 23 Accuracy of Flowing Pressure at Depth Predictions ...... Early Experiments ............................... Types of Artificial Lift Systems ....................................................................................MULTIPHASE FLOW PREDICTION INTRODUCTION .................................... Effect of Surface Operating Conditions ...................... Productivity Index (P. Bellows Charged Valves ................................`--- .........A P I TITLE+VT-6 94 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 2 9 315 TABLE OF CONTENTS API GAS LIFT MANUAL CHAPTER 1 ......................................... HORIZONTAL AND INCLINED MULTIPHASE FLOW CORRELATIONS ................................................................................................. Choosing an Artlflclal Lift System .............................................. Use of Inflow Performance Relationship Curves (IPR) ........ 25 Baxendell and Thomas Correlation............ 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.............................................. CHAPTER 2 .... Chronological Development ........ Vogel IPR Curve .......................................................................... Example Problem.............................................. HISTORICAL REVIEW OF GAS LIFT DEVELOPMENT ......................................... 23 Basis for Developing Multiphase Flow Correlations................................ 1 i 1 1 1 2 2 2 3 4 4 6 6 6 6 8 8 9 11 12 12 12 12 13 17 17 19 21 21 22 22 CHAPTER 3 .............```....... ................................................................................................................................................ 26 Typical Pressure Gradient Equation for Vertical Flow................................................................................................................... DEVELOPMENT OF THE MODERN GAS LIFT VALVE ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 24 PUBLISHED VERTICAL..... 24 Ros-Gray and Duns-Ros Correlations ......................................................................................................................................................................... Choice of Gas Lift System ........................................................................................................................................................................................`...... Comparison of Conduit Size................................ Inflow Performance Relationship (IPR) Technique.....................................................................................`.........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................) Technique ............. Types of Gas Lift ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Intermittent Flow Gas Lift............. PREDICTING THE EFFECTOF GAS LIFT .............................................................................................................................. 24 Papers Evaluating the Accuracy of Multiphase Flow Correlations............................................................................... ........................................ ADVANTAGES AND LIMITATIONS OF GAS LIFT ................................... THE PROCESS OF GAS LIFT ...... Factors That Affect Oil Production... 26 GENERAL TYPE OF MULTIPHASE FLOW CORRELATIONS ......... Computer Programs for Well Performance Analysis..........................................................................................````................ 25 Two-Phase Homogeneous No-Slip Mixture Correlations............................ --`````....................................... 25 SIMPLIFIED MULTIPHASE FLOW CORRELATIONS BASED ON TOTAL ENERGY LOSS FACTORS OR NO-SLIP HOMOGENEOUS MIXTURES ...

..................................................... Converting Rgoto Rg.................`............................................................................................................................................................................... Basic Components of Gas Lift Valves................................................................................................. STABILITY OF FLOW CONDITIONS AND SELECTION OF PRODUCTION CONDUIT SIZE ........................................................ Mandrel and Valve Porting Combinations.......... Conditions Necessary to Assure Stable Multiphase Flow ................................................ ............................................................................................................................. Opening Forces ......................................CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT DESIGN METHODS INTRODUCTION ..........................................................................................................................................`..............................................................................................................................................................................................................`... Valves Used for Continuous Flow .................................................................................................. CHAPTER 5 ...................................................................````...............................................`............................. Effect of Tubing Sizeon Minimum Stabilized Flow Rate ....................................................................... 35 35 39 39 39 39 41 41 45 49 49 49 50 52 54 54 57 57 58 59 59 60 60 60 61 61 6..................... Wireline Retrievable Valve and Mandrel ..........................-`-`........................................................................................ Gas Injection in the Annulusor Tubing .. Dynamic Flow Test ................................................................................................................................................................................ CHAPTER 6 .....................................GAS LIFT VALVES INTRODUCTION ....................................................................................................................... Test Rack Settings................................................. Piping and Distribution Systems .................................... Centrifugal Compression................... Gas Metering ............................................ Displaying Gradient Curves to Prevent Crossover...................................................... Valve Spread ......................................................... Gilbert’s Curves............................................................................................ Temperature Correction ...................................1 61 62 62 63 63 63 63 64 65 67 69 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````....................................................................................................................................... 27 27 28 28 32 32 32 33 34 CHAPTER 4 .... Flow Through the Gas Lift Valve .................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Test Rack Opening Pressure...................................................................................... Pressure Correction ...................................................................................................................... 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295....................................................................................................................................................................................................... Probe Test .............. Production Pressure Effect ........... BASIC FUNDAMENTALS OF GAS BEHAVIOR......... TYPES OF GAS LIFT VALVES ......... Closing Pressure .... APPLICATION TO OILFIELD SYSTEMS ........................................................................................................... Classification of Gas Lift Valves by Application .............. Subsurface Applications.........TABLE OF CONTENTS (Continued) DISPLAYS OF FLOWING PRESSURE AT DEPTH GRADIENT CURVES ........................................................................................................................................................................ Bellows Protection ............................................................................. System Design Considerations.............................................``.................................................. Reciprocating Compression ........................................................................................................ SURFACE GAS FACILITIES.............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. VALVE CHARACTERISTICS................... ...............................................................................................................................................`.............................................`--- Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002............................................. Graphical Determination of Minimum Stabilized Production Rate..................................................... Closing Force ..... VALVE MECHANICS................................... Basic Valve Designs ..... Valves Used for Intermittent Lift ............................................................................. Minimum Fluid Gradient Curve ...... Valve Load Rate ......................................................................................................................................................................................```............................. Gas Conditioning ............................................................................GAS APPLICATION AND GAS FACILITIES FOR GAS LIFT INTRODUCTION ............................................................

............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. Flowing Pressure and Temperature Survey ....................................................................................................................................................... Manual Controls ............ Subsurface Pressure Surveys.............................. 102 OPERATING SEQUENCE........................................................................................................... Downhole Temperature for Design Purposes ............................ Safety Factors in Gas Lift Design ............................................................................................ Recommended Practices Prior to Unloading...... Testing Well for Oil and Gas Production ..................................... DUAL GAS LIFT INSTALLATIONS..............................................`........................................................................................................................... Recommended Gas Lift Installation Unloading Procedure .......................................................................................... Measurement of Gas Volumes ............................... GETTING THE MOST OIL WITH THE AVAILABLE LIFT GAS ............ 102 TYPES OF INSTALLATIONS...`...........................................................................................................................................................................................`........................................................ Fluid Level Determination by Acoustical Methods ....... METHODS OF OBTAINING SUBSURFACE DATA FOR CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT ANALYSIS .....................``............................................................................................... Semi-Automatic Controls.EXAMPLES OF PRESSURE RECORDER CHARTS FROM CONTINUOUS FLOW WELLS ................................ CHAPTER 7 -ANALYSIS AND REGULATION OF CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT INTRODUCTION ...................................... DESIGN OF CONTINUOUS FLOW INSTALLATIONS........................................................................ INTERMITTENT FLOW GAS LIFT INTRODUCTION ...........````.................................................................................. DESIGNING GAS LIFT FOR OFFSHORE INSTALLATIONS ........................................................... Recording Surface Pressure in the Tubing and Casing ...... Types of Design Problems ....................................................................................................................................................................... Optimizing Gas Lift Systems .............................................API T I T L E t V T ................................................ VARIOUS WELLHEAD INSTALLATIONS FOR GAS INJECTION CONTROL ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Actual Conditions Different From Design Conditions............................................................................. Subsurface Temperature Surveys in Casing Flow Wells ........................ Automatic Optimization of Injection Gas Use....... Precautions when Running Flowing Pressure and Temperature Surveys ................. METHODS OF OBTAINING SURFACE DATA FOR CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT WELLS ...................... APPENDIX 7A ...-`-`......... 69 70 72 72 72 77 79 81 82 83 83 84 84 84 85 85 85 85 86 86 87 87 87 88 88 88 88 90 91 91 92 92 92 93 93 95 96 CHAPTER 8 .......................................`--- ...................................................... Example Graphical Design ........................................................................................ Temperature Surveys in Tubing Flow Wells ................................................................. Analyzing the Operation of a Continuous Flow Well ................. Visual Observation of the Surface Installation............................................................... --`````...............................b 94 m 0732290 0532833 T73 W TABLE OF CONTENTS (Continued) TYPES OF INSTALLATIONS ............................. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295...................................... WELL INJECTION GAS PRESSURE FOR CONTINUOUS FLOW SYSTEMS .................................................................................... CONTINUOUS FLOW UNLOADING SEQUENCE........................................`........ Surface and Estimated Subsurface Temperature Readings....................................`.......................................................................... 103 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002................................................. ADVANTAGES OF CONTINUOUS FLOW OVER INTERMITTENT FLOW GAS LIFT ....... Computer Calculated Pressure Surveys ............```..............................................................................................................................................................................................

.............................. DESIGN OF INTERMITTENT LIST INSTALLATIONS .............................................................................................................. APPENDIX 9A ............................................................................. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295............. Maximum Rate .........................................`...................... Unloading Operations Using A Time Cycle Operated Controller ................................................................ Corrosion ..................................................................................................................... Percent Load Method .................. EXAMPLES OF INTERMITTENT GAS LIFT MALFUNCTIONS .......................................................................................... TROUBLE-SHOOTING ..................................................................................................................................`...````...... CONTROL OF THE INJECTION GAS ..................................................................... UNLOADING AN INTERMITTENT INSTALLATION.........................................``......................................................................... SUGGESTED REMEDIAL PROCEDURES ASSOCIATED WITH REGULATION OF INJECTION GAS ................................................................................ The Time Cycle Controller ............................................................................................................... ADJUSTMENT OF TIME CYCLE OPERATED CONTROLLER ............................................................................................................ Initial U-Tubing ................................................... Design of a Gas Lift Chamber Installation ........................................... Wellhead Configuration ....................................................................... Choke Control IMPORTANCE OF WELLHEAD TUBING BACK PRESSURE TO REGULATION OF INJECTION GAS...... Procedure or Determining Cycle Frequency .......................................................................................................................................................................................... Valve Will Not Close..................... Application of A Combination Pressure Reducing Regulator and ...........................................................................................`--- CHAPTER 9 ........................................................................................... REGULATING AND ANALYZING INTERMITTENT FLOW GAS LIFT INSTALLATIONS INTRODUCTION ........ Location of Time Cycle Controller ......................................................... Use of Plungers i n Intermittent Lift Systems..............................................`.............................................................................. Separator Pressure .............. Variations of Percent Load Method ...................................................................```................................................................ Emulsions ..................... Unloading with Choke Control of the Injection Gas ....PROCEDURES FOR ADJUSTING............................................................................ CHAMBERS ................................................... Installation Will Not Unload ............................................................................ Production Pressure Operated Gas Lift Valves .. 103 103 104 105 105 105 108 109 109 109 110 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````....................................... Surface Choke in Flowline ....... Flowline Size and Condition...................API TITLE*VT-b 94 m 0732290 0532832 90T TABLE OF CONTENTS (Continued) FACTORS AFFECTING PRODUCING RATE ............................................................................................................................................................. SELECTION OF CHOKE SIZE FOR CHOKE CONTROLOF INJECTION GAS ....................................................... Fallback Method ............................................................................. VARIATION IN TIME CYCLE AND CHOKE CONTROL OF INJECTION GAS ........................................................ Recommended Practices Prior to Unloading..................-`-`. Choke Control of the Injection Gas ........................... Application of Time Cycle Operated Controller with Choke the in Injection Gas Line ................................. Application of Time Opening and Set Pressure Closing Controller .................................................................................................................................. Fallback ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 112 112 112 113 113 113 113 114 114 114 115 115 115 116 116 116 116 117 117 117 117 117 117 117 117 118 118 118 120 Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002................................................................................`...`................................................. .....................

.......... 135 138 REFERENCES .......... Well Tubing .................`.............................................................................................................`............................................................................................................. Standing Valve .....................................................................................................................................................................................````...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Lubricator ..................................... Plungers .................................................................................................................... 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295................```............................................................. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. TYPES OF PLUNGER LIFT .............`........................................... SELECTING THE PROPER EQUIPMENT .................................. 132 SYMBOLS ....................................... Second Flow Outlet .. Master Valve ..................................................................................`................................................................................................ Bumper Spring .................................................................................................... PROPER INSTALLATION PROCEDURES ...........................................A P I TITLEaVT-b 74 m O732270 0532833 846 TABLE OF CONTENTS (Continued) GLOSSARY .............................``....... SUMMARY ................................................................... USE OF PLUNGERS IN GAS LIFT SYSTEM THE INTRODUCTION .....................................................................................`--- CHAPTER 10 ......................................-`-`................................ 124 124 124 125 125 125 126 126 130 131 131 131 131 131 ....... Retrievable Tubing (or Collar) Stop ..... APPLICATIONS ...................................................................................................................................................`........................... --`````...................................................

09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.-`-`. Choosing an Artificial Lift System The choice ofan artificial lift system in a given well depends upon a number of factors. These are L@.. in The reservoir’s natural energy must then be supplemented by some form of artificial lift. . SubGas mersible Electric Pumping and Subsurface Hydraulic Pumping.. No other system of artificial lift uses the natural energy stored in the reservoir as completely as gas lift. Types of Artificial Lift Systems There are four basic ways of producing an oil well by artificial lift...````. Fig.. The actual energy that causes a well to produce oil results from a reduction in pressure between the reservoir and the producing facilities on the surface. it is under pressure from the natural forces that surround and trap it.`.. 1-2. --`````.``. because of a decrease in reservoir pressure or an increase in wellbore and surface pressure. Experience has shown that produced gas will support a gas lift systemif the daily gas rate from the reservoir is at least 10% of the total circulated gas rate. *ELLHEAD 10 PROCESSING AND TREATING STILL LOWER PRESSURE / LOWEST PRESSURE PRESSUHF PRESSURE Factors That Affect Oil Production Fig. wellscan be gas lifted overa wide range of producing conditions by regulating the injection gas volume at the surface. 1-1 .`.A P IT I T L E x V T . is the availability gas..The production process in an oil well ARTIFICIAL LIFT In many wells the natural energy associated with oil will not produce a sufficient pressure differential between the reservoir and the wellbore to cause the to flow into the well production facilities at the surface. natural energy will not drive oil to the surface sufficient volume. If the pressuresin the reservoir and the wellbore are allowed to either equalize. If an installation is adequately designed.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. no flow from the reservoir will take place and there will be no production from the well. If a hole (well) is drilled into the reservoir. or from an outside source.`. The driving force which causes these fluids to move out of the reservoir and into the wellbore comes from the compression the fluids that are stored of in the reservoir. an opening is provided at a much lower pressure through which the reservoir fluids can escape. eitheras dissolved gas in the produced oil.`.`. In other wells..```. If gas of is readily available. then gas lift is often an ideal selection for artificial lift. The surface and subsurface equipment required for each system is shown in Fig. as far as gas lift is concerned. Sucker Rod Pumping. Primary among them.6 94 m 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 3 4 782 m 1 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION TO ARTIFICIAL LIFT AND GAS LIFT BASIC PRINCIPLES OF OIL PRODUCTION When oil is first found in the reservoir. 1-1 illustrates this production processas it occurs in an oil well.

1-4A). It can be considered an extension of the natural flow process.. relatively high pressure gas is injected downhole into the fluid column. Reduction of the fluid density and the column weight so that the pressure differential between reservoir and wellbore will be increased (Fig.`.. I - \ “CONTROL EQUIPMENT -GAS LIFT VALVE --`````.Artificial lift systems Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.``. This injected gas joins the formation gas to lift the fluid to the surface by one or more of the following processes: 1. These are called continuous flow and intermittent flow. .`--- PACKER STANDING VALVE IOPTIONALI HYDRAULIC PUMP PUNP GAS LIFT (COURTESY DRESSER-GUIEERSONJ Fig. a natural flow well. In as the fluid travels upward toward the surface..```. When a well produces water along with the oil and the amount of free gas in the column is thereby reduced. Continuous Flow Gas Lift In the continuous flow gas lift process. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.````. reduces the density of flowing fluid the and further reduces the weight of the fluid column above the formation. This is shown in Fig. the fluid column pressure is reduced.`.. gas comes out of solution.h 2 Lift 9 4 W 0732290 0532835 b L 9 W Gas THE PROCESS OF GAS LIFT Gas lift is the form of artificial lift that most closely resembles the natural flow process.A P IT I T L E x V T .. .`. 1-3(A).`. and the free gas expands.-`-`.... Types of Gas Lift There are two basic types of gas lift systems used in the oil industry. being lighter than the oil it displaces. The free gas. This reduction in the fluid column weight produces the pressure differential between the wellbore and the reservoir that causes the well to flow. I-3(B). the same pressure differential between wellbore and reservoir can be maintained by supplementing the formation gas with injection gas as shown in Fig. 1-2 .

`.API T I T L E x V T ..```.-`-`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. 1-5. fluid is allowed to accumulate and build up i n the tubing at the in Fig.. therebyincreasingthedifferentialbetweenthereservoirwellbore and the (Fig.`. ' \d r 4 I (A) ' OIL & GAS FROM FORMATION OIL & GAS ' I FROM FORMATION F LUI D COLUMN WEIGHT REDUCED BY FORMATION GAS IN A NATURAL FLOW WELL FLUID COLUMN WEIGHT REDUCED BY FORMATION AND INJECTEDGAS: A GAS LIFT WELL (B) Fig.`.``. As its name implies.6 99 m 0732290 0532836 555 m Lift Gas and Lift Introduction Artificial to 3 Intermittent Flow 2.````. Expansion of the injection gas so that pushes liquid it ahead of it which further reduces the column weight..In the intermittent flow system.. 1-4B)..Reduction in fluid column weight by formation and injected gas Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. --`````. can be produced by a form gas of lift called intermittent flow.`--- .`.. Displacement of liquid slugs by large bubbles of gas produces intermittently or irregularly and is designed to acting as pistons (Fig. produce at the rate at which fluid enters the wellbore A typical small continuous flow gas lift system is shown from the formation. Gas Lift If a well has a lowreservoirpressureoraverylow producingit rate. 1-3 . this system 3 .. 1-4C)..

and to unload water from gas wells.`. Continuous flow gas lift will usually be more efficient and less expensive for wells that produce at higher rates where continuous flow can be maintained without excessiveof use injection gas.Three effects of gas in a gas lift well Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Gas lift is suitable for almost every type ofwell that requires artificial lift. Periodically.`. It can be used to artificially lift oil wells to depletion... The length of the gas injection period will depend upon the time required to push one slug of liquid to the surface.``..`--- Expansion of Gas Fig.LIQUID Reduction of Fluid Density GAS (C) Displacement of Liquid Slugs by Gas Bubbles --`````.````.`.`.. regardless of the ultimate producing rate.`. 3. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. a large bubble ofhigh pressure gas is injected into the tubing very quickly underneath the column of liquid and the liquid column is pushed rapidly up the tubing to the surface. 2. Installations can be designed for lifting initially from near the surface and for lifting from near total depth at depletion. to kick off wells that will flow naturally. intermittent flow gas lift is suited only to wells that produce at relatively low rates... 1-4 . The advantages of gas be liftsummarized can as follows: usu- 1. The producing rate can be controlled at the surface. . Sand in the produced fluid does not affect gas lift equipment in most installations.-`-`. This action is similar to firing a bullet from a rifle by the expansion of gas behind ADVANTAGES AND LIMITATIONS OF GAS LIFT Choice of Gas Lift System Because of its cyclic nature.```. Gas lift installations can be designed to lift from one to many thousands of barrels per day.A P I TITLEaVT-b 4 Lift 94 m 0732290 0532837 491 W Gas the rifle slug. Flexibility cannot be equaled by any other form of lift. Initial cost of downhole gas lift equipment is ally low. 4.. bottom of the well. The frequency of gas injection in intermittent lift is determinedby the amount of time required for a liquid slug to enter the tubing.. to back flow water injection wells. .

Gas lift is ideally suited to supplement formation gas for the purpose artificially lifting wells of where moderate amounts of gas are presentn the produced fluid. Corrosive gas lift gas can increase the cost of gas lift operations if i t is necessary to treat or dry the gas before use. repaired maintained. This limitation has been circumvented on some wells through theuse of gas-cap gasas a lifting sourceand the return of the gas to the cap through injection wells.`.````.. GLYCOL DEHYDRATOR STATION --`````.. Gas lift is not adversely affected by deviation of the wellbore. On the other hand..`. SURPLUS GAS T O SALES 2. The relatively few moving parts in a gas lift system give it a long service life when compared to other forms of artificial lift.A typical gas lift system Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`. 7.```. Gas must be available. exhaust gases. 1-5 .``.. Operating costs are usually relatively low for gas lift systems.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. .. i 9.-`-`.. 3. In some instances air.`.`--- GAS/OI L SEPARATOR MANIFOLD INJECTION GAS M A N I F O L D (METERING & CONTROL) ØI Fig. 6. gas lift also has certain limitations which can be summarized as follows: l . This and equipment can be driven by either gas or electricity. and nitrogen have been used but these are generally more expensive and more difficult work with to than locally produced natural gas.`.. Wide well spacing may limit the use of a centrally located source of high pressure gas.APTITLE*VT-6 I 94 m 0732270 0532838 328 m 5 Introduction to Artificial Lift and Gas Lift 5 . 8. The major item of equipment (the gas compressor) in a gas lift system is installed on the surface where it can be easily inspected.

provisions for circulating some level of casing integrity than would be required for of the compressed gas for gas lift will not.. Fig. if the associated gas will be gathered and compressed. significantly increase the initial cost.1957:Introduction valves. etc.`. Brear in 1865 (Fig. Priorto1864:Somelaboratoryexperimentsperformed with possibly one or two practical applications.l br SUBMERGENCE W Fig.. 1-6).. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. The first practical application of 4. However..Early gas lift nomenclature 5. 6. of wirelineretrievablegaslift Chronological Development The following chronological development gas liftwas of given by Brown.Brear Oil Ejector (May 23.. Also. 1929-1945: This era included the patenting of about 25. 6..S. In very low pressured reservoirs. Also in this era. Conversion of old wells to gas lift can require a higher as is usually the case. ing bottomhole pressure is desired. 7.`--- . the pressure-operated valve has practically replaced all other types of gas lift valves. Numerous patents were issued for foot-pieces. More efficient rates of production as well as proration caused the development of the flow valve.. --`````. when low flowpreparation than does single well pumping systems. in most pumping systems.````. Installation of a gas lift system including compreslift cannot achieve as great a pressure drawdown as sors usually requires a longer lead time and greater can some pumping systems. FLOW LINE . Several flooded mine shafts were unloaded. of straight gas lift with wide in Oklahoma (See Carl Emanual Loscher (German mining engineer) applied compressed air as a means of lifting liquid in laboratory experiments in 1797. 1920-1929: Application air was lift in 1846 when an American named Cockford publicity the from Seminole Field Pennsylvania. ing cost of the gas lift system will usually far out weigh any additional cost of the initial installation.```.`. 1-6 .000 different flow valves.. in from wellslifted some 1-7). Such famous fields as Spindle Top were produced by air lift. the initial surface installation for gas lift mittent lift and chamberlift forms of gaslift can usuwill sometimes be more expensive than equivalent ally achieve pressure draw downs comparable to pumping installations. 1-7 . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. the reduced operatpumping systems. However. HISTORICAL REVIEW OF GAS LIFT DEVELOPMENT Early Experiments 3.A P I TITLE*VT-b 9q m 0732290 0532839 2b4 m 5. Canalizo and Robertson in a paper published in 1961. oil The firstU. patent for gas lift called “oil ejector”was an issued to A.`. many additional companies have been formed with mostof them marketing some version of a pressure-operated valve. (Manyof the sketches shownin this chapter are taken from this paper.-`-`. 1864-1900:Thiseraconsistedoflifting by compressed air injected through the annulus or tubing. 1865) Fig. 2.) 1. 1945 to present: Since the end of World War II. the use of interIn addition. cases.`.``.. 1900-1920: Gulf Coast Areafor hire” “air boom.`. continuous flow gas 4.

``. 1-8 . 1-10 and Fig. The earlykick-off valves were designed to operate ona 10-20 psi pressure differential until the development of the spring-loaded differential valve which operated at about100 psi differential. 1-9 .Jet collar \ Fig.Taylor kick-off valve I FLOW LINE %:\ O :I: N TURN TUBING TO CLOSE a+- . 1-10 .-TU BI NG TUBING -=-":="" -" I " " FLAPPER TYPE SPRING Fig. Straight gas injection which employed no valves and consisted primarily of U-tubing the gas around the bottom of the tubing.`. The kick-off valve was a crude forerunner of the modern gas lift flow valve. 1-9) were placed up the string to allow gas to enter higher and thereby reduce the exup cessive kick-off pressures required for kicking around the bottom... 1-8..`..`--- AS Fig.Kick-off valves Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. 1-11) were next employed to providea means for closing off gas after a lower valve was uncovered.A P I TITLE*VT-6 Lift Gas and 94 m 0732290 0532840 T8b m 7 Lift Introduction Artificial to TechnicalDevelopment o Gas Lift f Equipment The technical development of gas lift equipment can be grouped into stages which are described as follows: 3 . 1.`. GAS " TUBING 2 Jet collars (Fig.-`-`.. 1-11 ...```.````.Early gas (air) lift without valves Fig. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. . Kick-off valves (Fig. Several types of early gas and air lift hookups are shown in Fig. --`````.`.`..

A-A ?-- il-" v (A) Mechanically controlled valves CASING (B) Bryan differential valve FLOW LINE TUBING DISK TYPE VELOCITY 4 + GAS IN FLOW LINE (C) Velocity controlled valves (D) Spring loaded differential valves Fig.`..```.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`... .. 1-12 . 1-12) which was operated by the difference in pressure between the injection gas in the casing and the fluid in the tubing.Early types offzow valves --`````. The differential valve opened when there was an increase in fluid pressure relative to injection gas pressure and closed when the gas pressure increased relative to the fluid.. the closest thing tothepresentday gas lift flow valve was the differential valve (Fig.`. Little or no surface control was possible in a differential valve installation.. This principle of operation meant that the differential valves had to be spaced close together in order to assure proper operation of the installation.`.``.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.-`-`.API ITLESVT-6 T 8 94 m 0732290 0532843 912 Gas Lift m DEVELOPMENT OF THE MODERN GASLIFT VALVE Differential Valves Until 1940..````.. SEC.

the valve could be operated from the surface by changes in the injection gas pressure.. Chatter is prevented by the valve was opened by an increase in injection gas pressure and closed by a decrease in pressure. The specific gravity differential valve employed the difference in specific gravity between a 16 foot column of kerosene and a 16 foot columnof well fluid for operating pressure.`. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.A P IT I T L E + V T ..the valve’s length and excessive diameter limited its transportability and application. designed his valve.-`-`.. King’s valve.14. King introduced his bellows charged gas lift valve. This meant that fewer of the bellows type gas pressure operated valves were required for each installation. Gas Charged Pressure Chamber Bellows 4 Fig. 1-1 3..`. including an anti chatter mechanism.6 9 Lift Gas and Lift Introduction Artificial to 74 D 0732290 0532842 857 W One type of differential valve.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. allowed for the first The bellows in the King valve is protected from excessive time the gas lifting of low pressure wellswith a controlled well pressure by sealing the bellows chamber from the well change in the surface injection gas pressure. since the valve relied on the relatively high injection gas pressure for operation.T h e principal of operation of the bellows valve was also far superior to the differential valve for most applications in that the bellows valve was closed by a decrease in gas pressure.``.Specific gravity type differential valve Bellows Charged Valves In 1940. whereas the differential type valve opened with a decrease in gas pressure. W. 1-13 . which was very popular around 1940. element. which 1. 1944 is shown in Fig... This meant that it was no longer necessary to operate a valve from the surfaceby rotating or moving the t u b i n go rw i r e l i n ec o n n e c t e dt ot h es u r f a c e . thereby allowing the spacing between valves to be much greater than the differential pressure operated valves. 1-14 . bellows charged gas lift valves.`.. is shown in Fig. He recognized the need for complete is very similar to most present day unbalanced..However.King valve (First pressured bellows valve) OPERATING VALVE VALVES ABOVE OPERATING VALVE Fig. R. singlebellows protection. It was very successful in continuous flowwells and may still be operatingsuccessfullyinsomewells.`.`--- Stem 8 Seat .```. A drawing taken from King’s patent issued on King had good insight into valve construction when he January 18. --`````.````. Since King’s fluids after full stem travel. This valve was originally called the Specific Gravity Differential Vulve.

```..`. POSITIVE STOP FOR STEM BELLOWS SECTION GAS INLETS STEM 8 SEAT INSERT REVERSE CHECK Fig.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. . Fig..``. The baffle design also supports the bellows.`.`... Similar construction is used by several manufacturers in their present gas lift valves.Typical modern bellowscharged gas lift valve --`````.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.-`-`... The success of the King valve is evidenced by the fact that the basic principles used in the design were quickly adopted by almost all valve manufacturers and are still used with little modification in today’s gas lift valves. Gas lift valves and mandrels are discussed in detail i n Chapter 5 of this manual. Note the similarity between this valve and the Kingvalveshown in Fig.`. 1-14. 1-15 is an illustration of a typical modern bellows charged gas lift valve.A P I TITLE*VT-b 10 74 m 0732290 0532843 775 Gas m Lift small orifice... 1-15 .````.

`--- . all flow in the reservoir up to the wellbore 2and inflow performance must be equal. and wells can be designed based on which they call Inflow and Outflow performance.````.carefully considered when sizing production equipment. That is.`. --`````.`. we can is designated as inflow performance and all flow up the produce no more fluid from the reservoir than we can to lift tubing and into the production facilities is designated outthe surface and vice versa. Both inflow and outflow performance can be preflow now divide well performance into two basic categories dicted quite accurately. outflow performance trated in Fig.Inflow and Outflow Performance in a flowing well Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. it is flow performance. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295... '"1 U 4 NFLOW PERFORMANCE " " " I ' I I I I " Fig.6 94 m 0732290 0532844 621 m Well Performance 11 CHA 'TER 2 WELL PEF IFORMANCE INTRODUCTION tivity and fluid composition.. Most students of fluid ment.`.-`-`. As illusthese predictions. produc.`. In any given well...```. well's outflow performance A Well performance is controlled by a large number of is a direct function of the size and type producing equipof factors that are often interrelated... extremely important that a well's inflow performance be A well's inflow performance is controlled by the characteristics of the reservoir such as reservoir pressure. 2-1 .A P I T I T L E t V T .``. 1.`.. Because of this fact.

This may not always be true.O) where flow efficiency is defined as the ratio of the actual to the ideal productivity index. From these curves he was able to develop a reference IPR curve which not only could be used for most solution gas drive reservoirs in arriving at oil well productivity. method assumes that all future production rate changes will be i n the same proportion to the pressure drawdown as was the test case. psig Flowing bottomhole pressure.1 pws P.I. This involves measuring a well's producing rate. the well (2)- 0.`. that is. Gilbert.I. V.=J) technique.`. BLPD Static bottomhole pressure. as the number of barrels of liquid produced per day (BLPD) for each pound per square inch (psi) of reservoir pressure drawdown. . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. which is a straight ]ine IPR curve.12 Gas Lift INFLOW PERFORMANCE PREDICTION A well's inflow performance is usually expressed in terms of productivity which simply indicates the number of barrels of oil or liquid that a well is capable of producing at a given reservoir pressure. psig = ql = P. Productivity index. Vogel developed an empirical technique for predicting well productivity's such under reduced conditions and he called his method of analysis Inflow Performance Relationship (IPR) after the terminology used in an earlier paper written by W.Pf w - J = 1 BLPD/psi 100 BLPD 1000 psig . His work was based entirely upon results obtained from wells producing in solution gas drive reservoirs..I.. is given in the following example..-`-`. if we draw the FBHP down to 500 psig from the Of 'Ooo Psig the produce at the lowing rate: J = q1 Note that the initial bubble point pressure (PB) has been substituted for the static bottomhole (Pws) pressure in the above equation to emphasize that the Vogel IPR curve only applies when Pwf= PS The change i n production with a change in the flowing bottomhole pressure above the initial bubble point reservoir pressure is defined by the productivity index equation.I. but would give muchcould accurate projections more than be obtained using the P. However.0 . This can be written as an equation using current engineering symbols as follows: J where: J = 91 Equation 2. then using this information to calculate a P. Inflow Performance Relationship (IPR) Technique The P.. The bubble point pressure is the condition of temperature and pressure where free gas first comes out of solution in the oil.. defines P.````. Productivity Index (P. When the pressure in the formation drops below the bubble point pressure.I. or rearranging the equation: 91 = (J) X (Pws . gas is released in the reservoir and the resulting two-phase flow of gas and oil around the wellbore can cause a reduction in the well's productivity.. especially in a solution-gas drive reservoir producing below the bubble point pressure. J.`. and flowing bottomhole pressure at that rate.900 psig Equation 2.I. the absolute permeability and porosity of the formation remain in the same and unaltered from the drainage radius to the wellbore radius. One way of expressing well productivity iswith the Productivity Index (P.. Find: ofP. E.) 500 psig --`````. Vogel IPR Curve The Vogel IPR dimensionless curve (see Fig.2 Solution: J = Pws ql ..8 (+) Equation 2. 2-2) is based onthe following equation: 90 (qohax = 1.2 - Given: A wellthat produces 100 BLPD andhasan SSBHP of 1000 psig and a FBHP of 900 psig.I. Using the same example.0.``.. Equation 2.```. .`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. = Pwf = The calculation of a well's P.1 The P. BLPD/psi Liquid Production Rate.Pwf) = 1 X 500 of Rate (ql) = 500 BLPD at FBHP (Pw.1 for the well. The second requirement to assure validity of the Vogel IPR relationship is that the flow efficiency (FE) must be equal to unity (FE = 1.`... Ideal implies no skin effect. Drawdown is defined as the difference in the stabilized static bottomhole pressure (SSBHP) and the flowing bottomhole pressure (FBHP).I.`. good experience has been obtained using the Vogel IPR in all two-phase flow conditions.Pf . method. P.' Vogel2 calculated IPR curves for wells producing from several fictitious solution gas drive reservoirs. technique allows us to determine the well production if the pressure is drawn down further.=J) Technique One definition of Productivity Index and the one that is used in artificial lift.

./(q. A worksheet for performing IPR calculations is given in Fig. (90) max. Gage pressures will be used in these calculations.. Also. The maximum production rate. If a well produces free gas. the IPR curve will not berestricted to all oil production if free gas is present with liquid the phasethe at flowing bottomhole pressures in the wellbore. P.. P.```.. The incremental increase in production for the same incremental increaseinflowingbottomholepressuredrawdown becomes less at the lower flowing bottomhole pressure.`. Flowing bottomhole pressure.) Solution: 1. Daily production rate = q o = 65 BOPD 3.50 (90) max 114 162. WITH 100% DRAWDOWN..f can be calculated for any value of q. --`````.. SPE 1476) Since this discussion is an introduction to the application of the widely-used Vogel IPR curve and not a detailed presentation on the concepts of well damage and inflow performance.) (90) max Fig... Pressure Ratio = pwf = P. is calculated using the given test q o and corresponding P.API T I T L E * V T .. Pwf= 1500 psig Find: l . less than (qo)max.90) = 146 BOPD max When the valve for (90) max is determined.70 = 0..5 (2000) = 1000 psig Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.90 From theVogel IPR curve: Rate Ratio.= 0.0. . Daily production rate for a flowing bottomhole pressure equal to 500 psig (See Figures 2-4 and 2-5 for a graphical presentation of the Solution.5 (0.-`-`.`. Maximum production rate for 100 percent drawdown (Pwf= O psig) 2.75 2000 = 0. = PB and FE 1. 2-2 .````. the value of q.40 P. and a significant flowing bottomhole drawdown below the initial bubble point pressure is required for the desired daily production rate..`. 500 = 0.Vogel’s curve for inflow performance relationship (from Vogel’s papel.25 2000 . Pwr= 0.1500 . q. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.``.= 0.= 0. flowing the bottomhole pressure for a production rate of 114 BOPD for the above well can be calculated as follows: Rate Ratio = 90 . the value of P. Also. As an example. From the Vogel IPR curve: Rate Ratio. for all values of Pwrcan be calculated.. 2.5 Vogel’s Example Problem The following data for illustrating IPR calculations were used in Vogel’s paper: Given: I . 2-3. q o (90) q o = 162. Averagereservoirpressure.r. q o ~ PRODUCING RATE AS A FRACTION OF MAXIHUH PRODUCING RATE MX..b 74 m 0732270 053284b 4 T 4 13 Well Performance 2. Pressure Ratio = - Pr w ... the example calculations will be based on the assumptions that P. more accurate production predictions can be expected using the Vogel IPR curve than using a straight line productivity index relationship for water-cut wells.`. = 2000psig ( p w s = PB) From the Vogel IPR curve: Pressure Ratio.`--- The maximum daily production rate represents the maximum deliverability of the well if the bottomhole pressure could be decreased to atmospheric pressure (O psig) by turning the well upside down and producing through a frictionless conduit.

`. j (3) TEST RATE = .80 !.. 2-3 ... = PSkI .Worksheetfor performingI P R calculations Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..i: 0.``.. x = (5) = from this curve 0.````..WORK SHEET FOR NONDIMENSIONAL INFLOW PERFORMANCE CURVE WELL NO.```. ..o0 I Plot BHP(7) versus BFPD(8) for IPR Curve between BHP = O & BHP = P & BFPD .20 0. ' I 0.:i. ..60 0..20 '!:: 1 I O O j .. FROM BHP SURVEY 1 ..`..`.]..80 1 . ..`--- ..-`-`.. I :.40 0.`. . . I : ! I .40 " :.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.o0 GIVEN: ( 1) P . ~ BFPD I::. Rate (6) Fig.. = O & BFPD I Max. --`````.60 II > 0. 0..

000 a r m 2 O Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. 2-4 .. . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.-`-`.....A P I TITLEWVT-6 94 m 0732290 532848 0 277 m 15 Well Performance IPR 2.````.`..```..`.`.`.``.Example problemsolution Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`--- FRACTION OF MAXIMUM PRODUCING RATE FRACTION OF MAXIMUM PRODUCING RATE FRACTION O F MAXIMUM PRODUCING RATE FRACTION O F M A X I M U M PRODUCING R A T E Fig.`..

Continuation of example problem Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002....`..4 A 6 5 BOPD ___- @ A = 146 BOPD = q o - 162 BOPD x 0.`. 2-5 .`.````. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295..`--- .`..```.``.FRACTION O F MAXIMUM RODUCING ATE RACTION P R F SINCE TEST RATE AT 1500 PSlG WAS 65 BOPD OF M A X I M U M R O D U C I N G A T E P R X = 162 BOPD = (qo) MAX (G) IPR FRACTION OF M A X I M U M P R O D U C I N G R A T E @ ” 0.9 = 0. --`````...`.9 146 BOPD = q O Fig.-`-`.

1970 psig @ 5800 ft. Well data for the example problem follows: Casing Tubing Static BHP (Today) Flowing Wellhead Back Pressure Injection Gas Pressure Water Cuts (Assumed) Pressure Gradient Curves Tubing Setting Depth Formation Gas Oil Ratio Productivity Index Formation Depth Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API 7-inch O. maximum flow rates can probably best be obtained under annular flow conditions. The rates should be fairly equally divided over the entire range to give somewhat equal distribution of points along the entire length of the curve. generalized well gradient curves. The gradient curves used in this example are not typical.`--- . but the actual number will depend on the width of the producing range being considered. conduit size. can be used if they closely match the actual producing conditions. Generalized curves. and produce at the rates indicated. oil-water-gas. (outside diameter) 2’/~inch O. fluid velocity. Fortunately these computer calculations have been plotted into generalized pressure gradient curves that are immediately available to the operator and engineer. The intersection of the depth line with the Rgl line for naturalflowconditions (800 R.``. 2-6B shows the gradient curves for the 4000 B/D fluid rate at 100% oil. Since the producing characteristics of continuous flow gas lift wells are essentially the same as those for a naturally flowing well. and the given reservoir conditions. Six to ten rates should be sufficient.````. and a similar reading. 2-6A. 0-25-50-75% EPR Correlation (Orkiszewski) Near 5800 ft. ~ Example Problem All of the correlations for predicting multiphase flow require extensive calculations and from a practical standpoint can only be done with a computer. This may not be true...`. --`````.`..water-gas) or taking into account all of the fluid characteristics along with the conduit configuration and other factors affecting the flow. and the maximum rates for 2’/8 inch tubing will be checked later. Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Computer programs available from several sources make the calculation and plottingofsuchcurvesbothfastandinexpensive. Efforts to predict well outflow performance have been going on for many years and these efforts have culminated in much research and development work being done in the area of multiphase flow correlations. Note that the pressures shown in Table 2-1 are for both 100% oil and various water cuts. An example of one such gradient curve is shown in Fig.Separate curves must be used each well rate. 800 CFA3 5.`. Such varied parameters as fluid characteristics. 2-6A. The well under consideration is a high productivity well. The suite of gradient curves should cover all ranges of flow rates that are possible for the particular conduit being considered. Fig. The pressure readings are now tabulated in the manner shown in Table 2-1. the flowing bottomhole pressure Pwfcan be read at a given depth for a specific rate and gas to liquid ratio (Rg]).```... To begin the analysis it is assumed that for this well. A page of gradient curves calculated for this particular wellandrepresentingthe 3000 BOPDrateis shown in Fig. wellhead back pressure. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.0 BFPD/psi Drawdown (Straight Line) 5800 ft. The flow correlations that have developed from this work attempt to predict the pressure at depth in a flowing vertical column of multiphase fluid (oil-gas...A P I TITLE*VT-b 74 m 0732270 0532850 925 m Well Performance 17 WELL OUTFLOW PERFORMANCEPREDICTION Well outflow performance depends upon many complex factors which are often as difficult to simulate as those for inflow performance. has been noted on it. but were calculated for these specific conditions. Fig. well configuration. surface pressure and other effects. 230 psig 1500 psig @ Surf. 2-7 is a plot of these values and the resulting curves represent the minimum flowing pressure at the formation depth that will be required to overcome gravity. for many of the variables in two phase flow cause only a small change and can be generalized. for100%oil) has been noted with an arrow.`. In this case a line has been drawn representing the producing formation depth at 5800 ft.Fortunately. and pipe roughness all contribute significantly to outflow performance. The first step is toobtain or calculate a suite of vertical two-phase flowing pressure gradient curves for the conduitsizes to beexaminedbasedonproducing conditions to be expected. available in many textbooks.. friction. The following example demonstrates the use of these curves to predict outflow performance and well performance.-`-`. Using a suite of these gradient curves calculated for several different well rates. A separate suite of gradient curves is required for each water cut..D. The development and useof multiphase flow correlations for outflow performance predictions are discussed in Chapter 3 . The points shown in Table 2-1 are now plotted on Cartesian Coordinate paper with flowing pressure at the formation depth being scaled along the vertical (Y) axis and the producing rate plotted along the horizontal (X) axis. the flow correlations that have been developed work equally well in either system.`. The pressure at this point has been read as 930 psig. in this case 940 psig. water cut and Rgl. Gradient curve readings are con-tinued in fashion points thisuntil sufficient are obtained to represent a full range of producing rates.D.

) Fig. .Rglas Indicated FBHP @ 5800 ft.000 4.500 5.`.`--- I 1 4 I 1 I TYPICAL GRADIENT CURVES FOR 3000 B/D RATE (COURTESY EXXON PRODUCTION RESEARCH CO.18 Lift Gas Rate.`..```.000 10.000 6..`.[ = 200) 2190 2140 2100 2060 2020 2000 1960 1980 2000 2080 Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. 2-6 .000 2..500 3.-`-`.. psig 100% Oil (R.000 8.500 4..`..`.````.Natural Flow .000 3.Gradient curves TABLE 2-1 TABULATION OF POINTS FROM GRADIENT CURVE FOR NATURAL FLOW 7" x 27/8" Annulus .``.000 12..500 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.) TYPICAL GRADIENT CURVES FOR 4000 BID RATE (COURTESY EXXON PRODUCTION RESEARCH CO. BPD 2.I = 800) 990 940 930 935 940 960 970 1O00 1080 1180 1320 2240 25% Wtr (Rgl = 600) 1260 1180 1130 1110 1120 1120 1135 1160 1240 1320 1440 50% Wtr (Rgl = 400) 1655 1535 1465 1420 1390 1375 1370 1370 1440 1500 1600 75% Wtr (R.

A P I TITLExVT-6 9 4

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4. On the same sheet of graph paper, plot the well productivity line based on either the straight line productivity index or the IPR technique by beginning at a point representing the static bottomhole pressure (SBHP) on the vertical axis. This example uses the straight line P.I. method. An example using the IPR curves is given in Fig. 2-13. In this case, the point is 1970 psig at 5800 ft. Continue the plot of the productivity line by reducing the flowing bottomhole pressure by the amount of drawdown calculated for various rates. For example, at a rate of 5000 B/D and with a P.I. of 5.0 BFPD psi, the drawdown from the static pressure of 1970 psig is 1000 psig. Therefore, the point to be plotted for the extension of the productivity line is 1970 psig less 1000 psig or 970 psig and is plotted opposite the 5000 BFPD rate.
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the flowing pressure curves represent the maximum producing rate by natural flow which is possible under the given reservoir and well conditions if flow is up the 2l/8” x 7“ annulus. In this example, shown in Fig. 2-7, the maximum rate indicated is 5000 B/D at zero water cut and 4250 B/D at a 25% water cut. Note that the drawdown line does not intersect the 50% and 75% waters curves. This indicates that the natural flow is impossible regardless of rate where the water cut is 50% or more. Natural Flow then would cease on this well when it reaches a water cut somewhere between 25% and 50%.
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PREDICTING THE EFFECTOF GAS LIFT
The effectof injecting additional gas into a fluidcolumn from an outside source for gas lift purposes can be determined in the following manner. plotted for the maximum gas injection rate alongside the curve plotted for natural flow (800 Rgl) for the 100% oil case. A dotted line is also shown on Fig. 2-8 to indicate the 1200 Rgl curve which represents a plot of the flowing pressure for a case where injected gas is limited to 400 cubic feet per barrel (CF/B)(1200 - 800). 3. The maximum producing rates which are possible under various conditions are indicated the intersecby tion of the productivity line with the flowing pressure versus rate curves. In this case the maximum rate for unlimited gas lift is 5600 B/D, and for limited gas lift (400 CF/B injected gas) is 5450 B/D. These compare to a maximum natural flow rate under the same conditions of 5000 B/D. A comparison of maximum producing rates possible under both gas lift and natural flow conditions is shown in Table 2-3.

1. Using the same gradient curves and the same method as for natural flow, determine the flowing pressure at the formation depth for the total gas liquid ratio (formation gas + injected gas). If there is no limit on the amount of gas that can be injected, the Rgl which produces the minimum gradient line at each producing rate can be used. In the example problem, thatis a R,, of 3000 at the 3000 B/D rate. Since this minimum gradient will represent differentR,~values at different rates, the calculation of injection gas requirement will depend on the minimum gradient for the rate being considered. Table 2-2 shows a tabulation of the minimum downhole pressure readings at the various rates.
2. Plot the pressures versus rates tabulated in Table 2-2 on Cartesian Coordinate paper in the same manner as in the example for natural flow. Fig. 2-8 shows a curve

4. Using the above example, it is now possible to evaluate the benefits accruing to gas lift under the given conditions. Also, it is possible to determine the optimum gas injection rate by comparing the oil produced

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TABLE 2-2 TABULATION OF POINTS READ ON GRADIENT CURVES FOR GAS LIFT 7" x 27/8" Annulus Maximum Gas Lift R,, Values FBHP @ 5800 ft, psig

-

-

Rate, B/D

Oil

100% 690 680 680 700 720 750 810 870 1030 1180 1350

25% Wtr Wtr 740 740 750 760 790 860 890 950 1120 1280 1420

75% 50% Wtr

2,000 2,500 3,000 3,500 4,000 4,500 5,000 6,000 8,000 10,000 12.500

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Fig. 2-8 - Comparison of naturalflow with gas lift, 100% oil, no injection gas limit

Fig. 2-9 - Comparison of naturalflow with gas lift, 25% water, no injection gas limit

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(5450 B/D)under the limited gas injection rate of 2180 MCF/Day to the oil produced (5600 B/D) at a maximum gas injection rate of 4770 MCF/D. Plots of curves comparing gas lift and natural flow at 25%, 50% and 75% water cuts and with no injection gas limit are shown in Fig. 2-9, 2-10 and 2-11.
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Comparison of Conduit Size The effect of conduit size on maximum producing rate can be seen by comparing bottomhole flowing pressure versus rate curves prepared forthe various pipe sizesunder consideration. In the example problem, flow through 2'/~ inch tubing was considered as an alternative to annular flow. Fig. 2-12 shows a plot of the flowing pressure versus rate curves for various water cuts in 2 7 / ~ inch tubing. The maximum flow rate at each water cut is shown in the table on Fig. 2-12. The effect of changing static bottomhole pressures or formation productivity on producing rates can be determined by replotting the productivity line for the new productivity and with a new static pressure starting point. Effect of Surface Operating Conditions

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Fig. 2-10 - Comparison of naturalflow with gas lift,50% water, no injection gas limit

To calculate the effect of surface operating conditions, such as back pressure, on well production, curves should be prepared for avariety of possible surface operatingpressures and a comparison made of the producing rates under each condition. Such comparisons are useful in determining the production to be gained from reducing pressure losses in production facilities. They may also be used for determining the optimum design operating pressure at the wellhead.

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PnEssunes I " " " " " " " " 4 I 100 I I 1 I I 1 Mo 300 400 500 600 700 Boo I PRODUCTION R A T E (BBL. An example of such a plot is shown Although the example problem uses the straight line P.-`-`. in effect..``. the computer versions usually allow the user to input a wide variety of producing parameters and to study the effect of each of the parameters on well performance.Computer plotsof gas lift well performance Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.````..`. 2-13 .0 BFPD/PSI 3 2dOO 40b0 60b0 d o 0 l0. IPR curves can also be used for determining the point of intersection.Curve number (1) is an IPR curve and curve number (2) indicates the calculatedpe$ormance characteristics of the outflow system Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.. . technique for predicting inflow performance. 2-13. 2-12 .I. 2-14 . 2'h -inch tubing YELL ORTA lU6ULRR FLOU 2 716 I N . These programs are usually available as adjuncts to gas lift design programs but can be used as separate tools for well performance analysis.`. 2-14. Most of the computer programs follow very closely the manual technique discussed in this chapter.90 - cas INJ.Natural flow.. in Fig.A P I TITLEaVT-h 94 9 0732290 0532855 407 22 Gas Lift m which is.AOO 12. However./DAYI Fig. Computer Programs for Well Performance Analysis 2500 I I l " I l I 2-7/8' TUBING Computer programs are available that compare well inflow performance (productivity) with the vertical flow characteristics of the production installation to determine the maximum production rates that are possible under various producing conditions.`...bOOI O0 G A S L I F T PERFORMANCE PRODUCING RATE (BFPD) Fig.`.The great advantage of the computer programs is that they allow the generation of a large number of such curves comparing various producing parameters in a very short period of time...`--- le 500' H PI = 5. YRTERCUT 90 f FWHP = YO0 PSIG SC IWJ CRS = 0. This demonstrates the effect of injection gas pressure on producing rate and injection gas requirements.```. the balance point between inflow and Use of Inflow Performance Relationship Curves (IPR) outflow performance.`. NATURAL FLOW M A X FLOW RATES %H20 BFPD O 25 50 75 2500 2400 2100 500 L Fig. Many of the computer programs will also plot the information in a graphic form similar to that shown in Fig. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

. the calculated pressure loss be in error and discontinuiwill ties in the slopeof the flowing pressure gradient curvesmay be apparent. the density of the mixture can be calculated for any desired pressure without a complex gasslippage or liquid holdup correlation. Generally. the investigator does all of the experimental work in l'/d-inch nominal tubing.`. Usually a correlation is identifiedby the investigator or investigators. Each flow regimehas a different set equaof tions and correlating parameters for calculating a pressure loss. therefore.. Dimensionless groups are commonly used in the analysis of experimental data because the number of measured or assumed values for variables can be greatly reduced by combining severalvariables into a single dimensionless group of variables.``.```. A typical multiphase flow correlation consists numerous of equations and curves defining the relationships between different independent dimensionless groups. For the purpose of this discussion.`. Reynolds number is example of a dimensionless an parameter or group. --`````. Most wells are produced through a tubing string. Flowing pressure at depthsurveys with calibratedinstrumentsandaccurate stabilized production data measured during the surveys are Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`. The distribution of the liquid and thegasisbasedonthedailyproductionratewithno accumulation of liquid in the production conduit. There is a continuing effort to develop new correlations and to improve those that exist. depending upon which is the production string.-`-`. Selecting the best correlation for specific well production rates and conduit sizes is not always a simple matter. No-slip homogeneous flow implies that the gas and liquid have the same velocity.A P I TITLE*VT-6 94 m 0732290 0532856 343 m 23 Multiphase Flow Prediction CHAPTER 3 MULTIPHASE FLOW PREDICTION INTRODUCTION There are several words and terms in this chapter which may be new or confusing to the reader who is not familiar with multiphase flow studies. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. These simplified methods for calculating multiphase flow pressure loss. For example. The total energy loss factor is analogous to a single-phase friction factor. thus the group becomes independent of the unit system. which may be called correlating parameters. interpolation of empirical data will present no problem but extrapolation can be quite dangerous. The value must be established empirically by actual measurements... but a discussion of the more unique terminology should aid the reader.. the pressure loss calculations for multiphase flow and singlephase flow are similar. In other words. do not require the establishment of the flow regime or pattern. Predictions beyond the range of a correlation may be totally in error.. The variables are combined in such a manner that all units will cancel. Interpolation means the determination of values between measured data. When there is no purely mathematical relationship that will accurately predict the value of a variable or parameter associated with multiphase flow..````. A general computer program is developed based on these test data for 1'/4inch nominal tubing and extended to high rates through large tubing such as 4'h-inch O.`.D. Production conduit is a general term which can mean tubing or tubing-casing annulus. Many of the important correlating parameters mustbe determined empirically because mathematical solutions do not exist. with a total energy loss factor or a no-slip homogeneous mixture and friction factor. The flow regime for multiphase flow must be determined before the pressure loss can be calculated for the more general type of correlation. These relationships represent measured data that have been organized in a manner that will permit calculation of the flowing pressures at depth or pressure loss through a flowline based on a production conduit size and the fluid rates and properties. Dimensionless Parameters Most multiphase flow correlations involve numerous dimensionless groups or parameters. Basis for Developing Multiphase Flow Correlations Several of the earlier multiphase flow correlationswere based on a total energy loss factor or a no-slip homogeneous mixture for high rate production. Empirical Data The word empirical refers to measured data. There is no one multiphase flow correlation available today that is universally accepted by the petroleum industry for accurately predicting flowing pressure gradients in all sizes of production conduits for the ranges of gas and liquid rates encountered in oil field operation. If the flow regime cannot be accurately determined. Accuracy of Flowing Pressure at Depth Predictions Accurate flowing pressure at depth predictions in production conduits are essential to efficient continuous flow gas lift installation design and analysis. multiphase flow implies the presence of free gas and a liquid which may be oil and or water.`. definition of all terms is not A necessary for understanding the basic concepts..`--- . Multiphase flow in a production conduit represents complex relationships between many variables and dimensionless groups. whereas extrapolation refers to predicting values beyond the range of the measured data.

A multiphase flow data bank as a benchmark test for all multiphase flow correlations does notalwaysapply. For accurate predictions the flow pattern should also be relatively stable without severe heading or surging. Flowing pressure gradient curves and computer calculated flowing pressures at depth which are based on a proven multiphase flow correlation will assure consistent predictions in the stable flow range of the correlation.`--- Papers Evaluating the Accuracy of Multiphase Flow Correlations Therearetechnicalpapers I h . The importance of selecting the recommended orifice beta ratios for accurate gas measurement cannot be overemphasized because the volumetric gas rate is one of the most important parameters for defining the flow pattern or regime. An example is the use of low production rate data to check the Baxendell and Thomas correlations.`. essential to verify the applicability of a multiphase flow correlation. Generally.````. application and possible limitations are not always available for all multiphase correlations. 17* l x * thatreportedly evaluate the accuracy of several widely used correlations for vertical multiphase flow. The production conduit must be full open: i. Themultiphase flow correlations this discussion arenot applicable in when an emulsion exists.`. --`````. The reported data base. and Beggs and Brilll5.`. The morewidely applied correlations includeBakerlo. A statistical error analysis is performed on the difference between the published measured pressure loss and the calculated pressure loss using computer programs written by these authors. Eaton13. Duns and RosJ..-`-`. internal company improvements and modifications in multiphase flow correlations and computer programs are not public knowledge.A significant portion of the data may be out of the recognized production rate or production conduit size ranges. the area open to flow cannotbe restricted by PUBLISHED VERTICAL. Lockhart and Martinelli”. to be applicable to their multiphase flow correlations.`.```. Field personnel may report the average daily production rate as gas-liquid ratio for a well based on previous production test or an average daily rate for the last 30 days rather than obtaining accurate production test measurements during the survey. The number of detailed investigations of horizontal and inclined multiphase flow are less numerous in the literature.`. Baxendelland Thomas4.. by noted the investigators. Further investigation of the reported production test data may reveal the reason for the discrepancy.. the flowing pressure at depth predictions based on computer calculations are generally more accurate than the “so called” field measurements. Importance of Reliable Well Test Data Reliable well test data implies accurate gasmeasurement.. and the beta ratio controls the differential pen reading for a given volumetric gas rate.Johnson6. the only way to properly evaluate a multiphase flow correlation or set of flowing pressure at depth gradient curves to compare reliablewell test is data with calculated pressures at depth or with pressures determined from published gradient curves.andMoreland9.. authors of these papers use published data from several sources.. These vertical multiphase flow correlations are the Poettmann and Carpenter3. A differential reading in the upper two-thirds of the range of the element is essential for accurate gas measurement with an orifice meter..``. Only published information can be used to describe the various multiphase flow correlations. The proper equations for multiphase flow calculations depend upon a correct predictionof the flow regime forthe general type of multiphase flow correlations. In other words. . Flanigan12... A practice of reducing the flow rate to run a survey is not uncommon when the wireline operator has difficulty lowering the subsurface pressure gage into the production conduit. Beta ratio is the ratio of the size of the borehole in the orifice plate to the internal diameter of the meter tube. An operator should always double-check the field data before condemning a widely proven multiphase flow correlation. When the actual reported field data are inconsistent and not repeatable.e. The conclusions from this type of error analysis can be misleading to the reader. HORIZONTAL AND INCLINED MULTIPHASE FLOW CORRELATIONS This discussion is not intended to replace a text book on multiphase flow. HagedornandBrown7. Thesemay include flowing pressures at depth and production data from original publications for multiphase flow correlations being compared. Generally. Only the multiphase flow correlations that have received at leastlimited acceptance by the petroleum industry are mentioned in this chapter. There have been many instances when a multiphase flow correlation or set of gradient curves has been rejected based on reportedly reliable well test data after the calculated flowing pressures at depth didnot approximate the measured pressures at depth. Dukler. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. There are required wellandtubularconditionsbeforeaccurateflowingpressure-at-depth predictionscan be anticipated. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. et ali4.Orkiszewski*. The Beggs and Brill correlation for inclined flow may be used for vertical flow calculations by assigning a 90 degree angle of inclination.API TITLErVT-6 94 m 0732290 0532857 28T m 24 Gas Lift scale or paraffin deposition.

The energy loss factor for vertical and horizontal multiphase flow approached a near constant value at very high daily mass rates in a manner analogous to high Reynolds O I 2 S 4 & 6 7 4 ou x 10-4 O Fig... The final version of the Ros paper was presented by Duns5. which was based on an extensive laboratory investigation by Ros2' was presented at a Joint AIChE-SPE Symposium and a revised version of the same paper was published in the Journal of Petroleum Technology". The number of variables which affect these Poettmann and Carpenter Correlation pressure predictions are reduced because the fluid properThe first widely accepted multiphase flow correlation ties and conduit sizes are the same for the correlation and was developed by Poettmann and Carpenter and was pubthe actual wells.. The total energy loss factor curve was extended for daily mass rates which were significantly higher than the original Poettmann and Carpenter data. 3-1. which can be purchased from Shell Oil Company.`.```. The energy balance equation combined a pseudo no-slip homogeneous mixture density gradient and the Fanning equation for single-phase flow where the friction factor was replaced by the total energy loss factor. a ranking of the available correlations in terms of general overall applicability is questionable. The results from two computer programs based on the same multiphase flow correlation can be quite different.A P I TITLErVT-b Prediction Flow '74 m 0732270 0532858 116 m 25 Multiphase The Baxendell and Thomas correlation ishigh rate extena sion of the Poettmann and Carpenter total energyloss factor curve. All low rate data would be on the Poettmann and Carpenter portion of the curve and not on the extension by Baxendell and Thomas.Extension of the energy loss factor curve by Baxendell and Thomas4 (Copyright 1961. flow than all prior publications combined. Since extension energy loss curve was based on well data from the same lation are simple and are reportedz2.`. The original Poettmann and Carpenter lished in 1952. The calculations for this type corre-accurate for wells in Venezuela. The calcuflowing pressures at depth in areas of high rate production on when the correlation is based on accurate stabilized flowinglated flowing pressures at depth for high rates based the extended total energy loss curve proved to be exceedingly well data from the same field or similar well production of the rates and conduit sizes.. Another consideration is the manner in which a computer program is written and the correlations that are being used to calculate thefluid properties. 3-1 . to be more accurate 23 fields i n which the correlation was being used.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.````.`. .. --`````. reasonable in many instances than the more complex general type of accuracy in flowing pressure at depth predictions could be correlations. SPE-AIME. is being compared to other correlations when in fact the Duns and Ros Correlation is being compared. therefore. The Duns and Ros paper is based on laboratory data only and is not the Ros-Gray correlation that was modified to eliminate discrepancies between calculated and accurately measured data from over600 actual stabilized well tests. The authors assumed that the flattened portion of single energy loss factor curve or a simple homogeneous no-slip flow model should be considered for calculating the energy loss factor curve represents the truly turbulent conditions where little or no gas slippage occurs.`. anticipated.`--- Baxendell and Thomas Correlation Baxendell and Thomas modified the Poettmann and Carpenter correlation using measured data from high rate wells in Venezuela.`. Their correlation was based on a total single energy loss factor that accounts for all losses including liquid holdup from gas slippage and for friction and acceleration.The initial paper. First published in the JPT 1961) Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002... Ros-Gray and Duns-Ros Correlations Authors may infer that the Ros-Gray correlation. The work of Poettmann and Carpenter did total energy loss factor curve and the extension by Baxenmore to initiate additional research in vertical multiphase dell and Thomas is shown in Fig.``.-`-`. SIMPLIFIED MULTIPHASE FLOW CORRELATIONS BASED ON TOTAL ENERGY LOSS FACTORSOR MO-SLIP HOMOGENEOUS MIXTURES A simplified multiphase flow correlation based on a total numbers for fully turbulent single-phase flow on a Moody diagram. The conclusion remains that one particular multiphase flow correlation may prove to be more accurate than others for certain production conduit sizes and rates.

`. The density term includes a liquid holdup correction for gas slippage. The flow regime may be single-phase or bubble flow at the higher pressures nearer the surface. There may be more than one flow pattern existing between the lower end of the production conduit and the surface.1 Pressure . GENERAL TYPE MULTIPHASE FLOW CORRELATIONS A general type of multiphase flow correlation is reportedly applicable for all sizesof typical oil field production conduits and for the liquid and gas rates encountered oil in field operations..`--- SLUG BUBBLE Typical Pressure Gradient Equation Vertical Flow for Although the exact final equations and correlating parameters vary between investigators.. Brown22 notes that a simplified correlation developed from multiphase flow data for an actual production conduit size may assure more accurate pressure loss calculations than the more complicated general type of correlation based on laboratory controlled multiphase flow data for conduit sizes which are Gas Lift generally smaller and shorter than the actual conduits. Total energy loss factors are easily calculated from flowing pressure surveys.Density Friction Acceleration Gradient + Term Term Term Term SINGLE PHASE LlOUlO + Fig.`. or flow pattern.`.. The accuracy of the method for predicting liquid holdup is particularly important for the gas and liquid velocities associated with the lower production rates. The flow pattern schematic from Moreland9 in Fig. Liquid and gas viscosity's and surface tension are usually required input or are defaultvalues in the computer programs for the general types of multiphase flow correlations.`.````. to define the proper equations for calculating the flowing pressure gradient in the incremental pipe length under investigation. 3-2 . The advantages and accuracy of a simplified total single energy loss factor correlation or a two-phase homogeneous no-slip flow model based on actual measured data from high rate production wells should not be overlooked.6 94 m 0732290 0532859 052 m 26 Two-Phase Homogeneous No-Slip Mixture Correlations Several technical papers have been published that illustrate the application of two-phase homogeneous no-slip correlations for high rate wells. the basic typical pressure gradient equation for vertical multiphase flow consists of the following terms: Equation 3.... Accurate pressures at depth predictions are claimed by the developers of most general correlations for even relatively high viscosity crude oil..Typical flow patterns for vertical of gasflow liquid mixtures9 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. The general correlation requiresidentian fication of the flow regime. 3-2 for vertical flow of gas-liquid mixtures illustrates the need for proper flow regime identification. The pressure gradient equationfor at least one flow regime will include liquid holdup based on gas slippage. and an energy loss factor curve can be shifted to improve the accuracy of the calculated flowing pressures at depth..`.``.API T I T L E S V T .```. The accelerationterm is often neglected in all flow regimes except where highfluid velocities exists such as ANNULAR MIST FROTH --`````.-`-`. The importance of properly definedfluid property relationships for calculating flowing pressure gradients was demonstrated by Cornishz3. Liquid holdup represents the relationship between the volume occupied by the liquid and the total volume of the production conduit within the incremental pipe length under investigation.

Aziz.Flowing pressure at depth curves will be drawn for gas-liquid ratios (R. The original The flow regime. An explanation for basis of the gasvelocity number (RN) value on the abscissa. Fig. The accepted categoriesor flow regimes fortwoother investigators. 3-3..`. to This family.`. a maximum R.. a production rate. First published in the JPT June 1967) DISPLAYS OF FLOWING PRESSUREAT DEPTH GRADIENT CURVES Most displays of flowing pressure at depth gradient curves use the same parameters but may be plotted somewhat differently..I values with higher production rates. which is Region II on and III can be approximated by linear interpolation on the the Ros flow regime map in Fig. or flow pattern.````.-`-`.. (AI BUBBLEFLOW Gas Veloclty Number RN I\-.e. al. or set. of the liquid and gas terns and develop correlations for each pattern.. this conclusion by Hagedorn can be found in the paper by where R is the ratioof the in-situ superficial velocity of the Orkiszewski which notes that slug flow occurred in 95 gas to liquid phases./ FLOW SLUG-ANNULAR ANNULAR-MIST TRANSITION Fig. . The liquid phase is continuous in correlation include separate sets equations for the differof Region I.`. higher Rglvalues are associated with lower production rates and lower R. The work because his tests were conducted in a shallow 1500Ros flow regime boundary equations have been used by foot well. a and water cut which may be zero. Many phases. The flow regime must be established percent of the cases studied. The contribution of acceleration is reported to be very small in the other multiphase flow regimes.] only when the water cut is zero.`. In general.. For example..```. 3-3 is thepublished Ros flow regime map based computer programs based on the Hagedorn and Brown on laboratory data. whereas a R.. 3-4.`.D. Apparently. The first step after selecting the proper set of gradient curves is to convert the Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. 3-4 -Ideal flow regimes or categories for multiphase flow as illustrated by OrkiszewskP (Copyright 1967 SPEdata’ AIME. Generally. Orkiszewski. v . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. . L I . mapgenerallyis paper by Hagedorn and Brown’ stated that it was unnecesdivided into at least three major regions which are defined sary to separate two-phase flow into the various flow patby the continuity. phase flow are ideally depicted by Orkiszewski in Fig. Hagedorn not did before the proper equations andcorrelationscanbe encounter the bubble flow regime during his experimental selected for the flowing pressure gradient calculations. Published General Type Correlations The multiphase correlations developed by Ros.The Rgois equal to the R. tubing.I and not gas-oil ratio (Rgo)..I of 1000 to 2000 scf/STB may be the maximum for a higher production rate of 2000 STB/day through the same conduit size.].``. RI SLUG FLOW \ . : . i..1 of 10. Y . . .`--- Converting RgO Rg. et. a setof gradient curves will be displayed for a given conduit size. and gas is the continuous phase in Region III. --`````. all oil production.1) ranging from zero for single-phase liquid to a maximum practical R.or lack of continuity. depending uponthe conduit size and production rate. The ent flow regimes and use the Hagedorn and Brown correlapressure gradient in the transition area between Regions II tions for only the slug flow pattern.000 standard cubic feet of gas per stock tank barrel (scf/STB) would be displayed for a production rate only of 100 STB/day through 2’/rinch O. 3-3 -Rosflow region boundaries based on laboratory Fig.. are considered general.API TITLErVT-6 74 m 0732270 0532860 8 7 4 W 27 Multiphase Flow Prediction in the annular mist regime. of curves should always be defined in terms of R.

I. A set of typical flowing pressure gradient curves for 600 STB day through 23/s-inch O.Gilbert’s flowing pressure gradient curves for 600 BPD through 27/g-inch O.I curves at low flowing pressures. A higher flowing pressure at depth is predicted for R.] curves always represent total R.However.`. Gilbert’s curves were based on numerous flowing pressure surveys run in the VenturaField in California.D.. Note that the depth axis is shifted 5000 feet for the Rgl curves of 3000. The minimum fluid gradient curve and higher R. The minimum fluid gradient curve ignores the reversals in the individual R.D. Rgl = fo (Rgo) Equation 3.I below the range of a severe reversal in the flowing pressure gradient curve and the actual flowing wellhead pressure will exceed the lower pressures where a severe reversal would occur.`. The design calculations may lose some accuracyif gas lift operations should occur in the reversal portion of a high R. No multiphase flow correlation was offered for calculating these flowing pressures at depth. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. The optimum R. tubing is shown in Fig.`.I curves and represents a flowing Fig..`. scf/STB These R. the flowing pressure at the depth tangency for of the higher R..I curves will be one and the same above the pointof tangency. scf/STB f.%PI TITLExVT-b 94 m 0732290 0532863 700 m 28 Gas Lift pressure gradient curve definedby the loci of tangency’s of the higher R.I.I below the point of gas injection and is the injection plus the formation R.I about the point of gas injection. which is the formation R. Gilbert’s Curves Gilbert1 published one the first sets flowing pressure of of at depth gradient curvesin 1954. tubingz5 is shown in Fig.] curves to form a single curve. 3-6.. This increase in flowing pressure gradient is referred to as a reversal in the slope of a gradient curve.```.````. As the R..-`-`.I curves crossing over the low R.O . The optimum curve represents minimum possible flowthe ing pressure at depth for a given conduit size and production rate. 3-5. 3-7. fraction Rgo = gas-oil ratio.`. Gas lift installation designs and analyseshavebeenbasedongradient curve displays with a minimum fluid gradient curve without any reported significant error in predictions of flowing pressures at depth or injection gas requirements.D..I curve will result in the higher R. is 240 scf/STB.I of 5000 scf/STB than for 2400 scf/STB based on these gradient curves.] curve. Gradient curves displayed with a minimum fluid gradient curve are easier to apply for certain design determinations.. An example of overlaying of gradient curves24 is illustrated in Fig.. Although flowing pressure gradient curves for several conduit sizes were published by Gilbert. tubing.I = gas-liquid ratio. and accurate pressure determinations are difficult confusing at thelower and flowing pressures where the curves are crossing over one another.`--- Minimum Fluid Gradient Curve Many published gradient curves are displayed with a minimum fluid gradient curve rather than shifting the origin of the depth scale to prevent overlaying crossing and over of R. curves increases which infers that these points of tangency occur at increasing chart depths. --`````. . 3-5 . When the R. A reversal in the slope of a high R.``. the only full-page size curves presented the API in paper were for 27/~-inch O. 4000 and 5000 scf/STB.D.I exceeds 2400 scf/STB..mostefficientgasliftinstallations will operate with a total R. Gradient pressure. tubing.I increases. as defined by Gilbert for this daily production rate of 600 barrels through 2’/8-inch O.D.] curves at low flowing pressures at depth.. The Gilbert flowing pressure-depth curves were the forerunners for the present method of displaying gradient curves. tubing’ Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.water cut). the flowing pressure gradient begins to increase rather than decrease. = oil cut (1 . psi total Rgoto total Rgl before determining a flowing pressure at depth. One set of Gilbert gradient curves for 600 barrels per day through 27/8-in~h O.2 Where: R.

`.``.```.A P I TITLExVT-b 94 0732290 0532862 b 4 7 9 29 Multiphase Flow Prediction 8 16 PRESSURE 24 . 3-6 . OIL GRAVITY WATER SPECIFIC QRAVITY 0...441 IN.O7 6- 8- 0- 2- 4- 6- 8- 'O - Fig.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.-`-`.Vertical flowing pressure gradient curves without depth displacement to eliminate overlapping of the high R..65 150 O F 36.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. .100 PSI 32 40 40 66 2- VERTICAL FLOWINQ PRESSURE GRADIENTS (ALL OIL) TUBING SIZE 2. 1500 BLPD 4- PRODUCTION RATE Q A 8 SPECIFIC GRAVITY AVERAQE FLOWINQ TEMP.````..`.D..0 O API 1 . I.`....I curves24 --`````.

```.6 94 m 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 6 3 583 30 Gas Lift O 4 8 12 16 20 24 28 1 I 2 (ALL a u Tubing Size 2 i ...Vertical flowing pressure gradient curves plotted withminimum fluid gradient curvez5 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.````.7 .-`-`.`.. --`````.`.API T I T L E t V T .`.D. n Producing Rate 600 Bblr/Day Oil A I Gravity P 35" APt Gs Specific Gravity a 0. 1. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.. 3.``...`--- ..65 VERTICAL FLOWING PRESSURE GRADIENTS 1 I 3 4 8 a Fig..

`.```... reversal overlapping6 displaced on the depth scale to prevent gradient --`````.A P I TITLExVT-6 94 m 0 7 3 2 2 9 0 0532864 4 1 T 31 Multiphase Flow Prediction O 5 10 15 20 25 30 10 Fig..`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295..`.``.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..`.-`-`.````... ..`. 3-8 .Vertical flowing pressure gradient curves based on the Shell Ros-Gray correlation with the higher curves Rg.

predicted the from Fig.````.-`-`.```.`. 4. curve will be displaced sufficiently on thedepthscaletopreventthe nexthigher Rgl curve STABILITY OF FLOW CONDITIONS AND SELECTION PRODUCTION CONDUIT SIZE OF Multiphase correlations developed flow are based on Graphical Determination of Minimum Stabilized stabilized flowing well data..= 400 scf/STB Flowing Wellhead Pressure (Pwh) psig = 100 Fig. 3. 5..dailyproduction rate for a constant Rgl of 400 scf/STB actual flow conditions may be quite different than would be and a flowing wellhead pressure of 100 psig is shown in curves.. . 3-8.32 Gas Lift from crossing over the preceding lower RE..... 3-9 . 3-9.. Although smooth gradient curves may be pubA plot of flowing bottomhole pressure at 6000 feet versus lished for low liquidrates with low total gas-liquidratios.Flowing B H P versus daily production ratefor a constant gas-oil ratio --`````.``.I curves. Displaying Gradient Curves to Prevent CrOSSOVer The most accurate displayof gradient curves will include the reversal in the flowing pressures at depth for the higher R.100 STB/day Well 1. The R.I curves as for a set of gradient curves with a minimum fluidgradientcurve. Tubing Length = 6000 ft Water Cut (fo)= 0% (All Oil) Formation Rg.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.. A set of Ros-Gray curvesh are shown in Fig. 2.`.`. Flowing pressures at depth are determined in the same manner for the displaced R. A minimum pressure flowing bottomhole of 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 $3 - O 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1 011211431 5 1 Daily Production Rate .D. Information: Tubing Size = 2%-inch O.`. A correlation extended be can Production Rate beyond its range of validity without the user recognizing the limitations.curve. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

2..`--- a con- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. evaluating the gas lift operations in wells that have a wide range in daily production rate.. Information: Tubing Length = 6000 feet Formation Rg.`. The unstable flow conditions exist An explanation for the conditions necessary to assure at daily liquid rates less than the rate for the minimum stable multiphase flow can be related to a minimum free flowing bottomhole pressure. The cyclic conditions are perpetuated and intensifiedby the fluid flow increase as the daily liquid production rate decreases for the same production conduit size.```.``. The in-situ gas velocity must exceed a minimum 500 STB day in this example to assure not slipping into the value that prevents excessive gas slippage and correspondingly high liquid holdup which causes a well to load unstable region.. Also. a minimum gas velocthe flowing bottomhole pressure increases which in turn ity necessary to prevent excessive liquid holdup explains results in a further decrease in liquid rate. The gas rate velocity increases as as a loading and unloading state of flow before all flow the production conduit size decreases for the same daily ceases and the well is classified as dead. 3.`.`.`. Since there is this minimum gas rate requirement.A P I TITLE*VT-b Prediction Flow YY m 0732290 0532866 292 m 33 Multiphase approximately 860 psig at 6000 feet occurs at a daily proConditions Necessary to Assure Stable duction rate slightly greater than 500 STB day. A cyclic heading or surging condition develops as the daily production falls below the liquid rate up and die.-`-`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Most wells will reach a severe surging condition that can best be described why stable flowing conditions can be established in smaller conduit sizes for low wells. the total gas-liquid ratio to sustain stable flow must for this minimum flowing bottomhole pressure. .. 3-10 . For this reason. O 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Daily Production Rate ..````. The flowMultiphase Flow ing bottomhole pressure increases at lower and higher daily liquid production rates..= 400 scf/STB (All Oil) Flowing Wellhead Pressure = 100 psig Fig.Flowing B H P versus daily production rate for three different tubing sizes of the sume length und stunt gus-oil ratio --`````. a compariprinciples defining a vertical or inclined multiphase flow son of injection gas-liquid ratios is not recommended for system and the intlow performance relationship defining the deliverabilityof a reservoir.100 STB/day Well 1. As the liquid rate decreases..`.. The unstable range should be volumetric gas rate requirement for a given production conavoided by producing at a daily rate that is safely above the duit size.

tubing in Fig. The majority of the gas lift manufacturers have computer programs available to design and analyze gas lift installations.A P I TITLE*VT-b 34 94 m 0732290 Gas Lift O532867 L29 volumetric gas rate..`. Many companies have their own in-house multiphase flow computer programs. If 1 660inch O. 3-10.`.. a tubing size can be too large for a low capacity well or too small for a large capacity well. tubing string and require artificial lift with a larger size tubing. The widely used multiphase flow correlations in these computer programs have been verified by actual field measurement to be reasonably accurate when reliable well data are used for input....D.```. If the daily production rate occurs in the unstable range of flow for a given tubing size. the predicted flowing bottomhole pressure is approximately 1360 psig at 6000 feet 1 O0 for STB day through 2’/s-inch O. In conclusion.D. For example. Effect of Tubing Size on Minimum Stabilized Flow Rate A well may flow with a 2’/s-inch O. --`````..``.-`-`.thepredictedflowing bottomhole pressure would decrease to approximately 1000 psig forthesamedaily production rate of 100 STB day. CONCLUSIONS The ability to predict accurate multiphase flowing pressures at depthin a vertical production conduithas improved significantly since the work of Poettmann and Carpenter in 1952. These programs should be utilized by field production personnel for continuous gas lift installation design and analysis.. The calculations for inclined flow will be more complex by requiring profiles of production conduit lengthversus angle of deviation. Accurate gradient curves can be used to select the proper conduit sizefor a well based on the desired daily production rate.````.`. a lower flowing bottomhole pressure can be attained for the same daily production with a smaller conduit size. 3-9.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. the advent of multiphase flow correlations which are applicable to the conduit sizes and the daily production rates associated with gas lift operations has changed the design and analysis of continuous flow gaslift wellsfrom an art based on experience to a predictable science. Research in multiphase flow continues with increased emphasis i n gathering systems including flowlines and inclined flow.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.In other words. .D.`. (l’/a-inch nominal) tubing were run in the same well. The number of wells having deviated production conduits will increase as new wells are drilled from offshore platforms. Improved multiphase flow correlations will be developed for deviated production conduits. The intake flowing bottomhole pressure versus daily production rate for three commonly used tubing sizes is illustrated in Fig.

Gas lift valves downhole will respond to injection gas pressure and production pressure in the wellbore as well as pressure and temperature inside the bellows of thegasliftvalve. This is stated in the following equation: " PI = TI P2 Equation 4. before equation 4. An example of this is the nitrogen which is contained in the bellows of a gas lift valve. dehydrators. For example. It is important to understand that a single component like nitrogen gas and a mixture of components such as natural gas will behave differently. BASIC FUNDAMENTALS OF GAS BEHAVIOR The pressureof a liquid or gas system can be measured. --`````. Gas lift systems utilize gas pressure more than one type in of application. i. Natural gas used to produce liquids by gas lift is controlled. .. In this application.A P I TITLE*VT-6 Application Gas 9Y m 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 b 8 Ob5 m 35 and Gas Facilities Lift Gas for CHAPTER 4 GAS APPLICATION AND GAS FACILITIES FOR GAS LIFT INTRODUCTION Gas handling facilities such as gas compressors. Also..e.`. Injection gas for gas lift wells can be affected by various operating and producing conditions including gas supply and production system back pressure.compressed..`--- because the nitrogen cannot expand outside the bellows. meters. if atmospheric pressure is 15 psi. an understanding of gas fundamentals and operating practices is necessary to the successful operation of a gas lift system. At each link the gas expands and loses some of its pressure energy.`. and then goes through a gas lift valve.`. The pressure is taken with a gage and is referred to as gage pressure. as a gas that contains even small quantities of hydrogen sulfide can be very corrosive to certain equipment and present a hazard to human life. gas goes from the compressor. In the first type of application the gas can expand. A gas expands when heated. and pipelines are the highest cost portions of the gas lift system. where it expands and mixes with the produced liquids.`.. In all calculations throughout this chapter.. Temperature affects the gas in the closed container as well as in the open. A pressure gage is the device thatis commonly used to measure the pressure of the liquid/gas mixture produced from the well as well as the pressure of the gas injected into the well. expansive application. Temperature increase after compression and the subsequent effect on flow through a pipeline or a gas lift valve are the most common examples of these phenomena. Gas measurement requires a record of the flowing temperature of the'gas through an orifice meter. For example.``. The indicator of heat change is the measured degree of temperature... In the sealed container. This equipment usually requires more operating and maintenance effort than any other part of the gas lift facilities. However.In theUnited States it is measured in pounds per square inch and designated psig. the effects of temperature must be reviewed.`. a temperature increase causes a pressure increase inside the bellows Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. These conditions must be accurately predicted. Operating practices involving gas are different from those for oil because of the increased pressure and compressibility of the mixtures involved. degrees Rankine ("F plus 460).```.measured. In the calculations shown here. through a pipeline to the well. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. 1000 psig converts to 1015 psia.````. The gas flow equation is adjusted for the flowing temperature of the gas and corrected to a standard temperature of 60°F. The difference between gage pressure and absolute pressure is very small at high pressures. Thesealed container is a system in which pressure. temperature. 150°F plus 460 is equal to 610" Rankine (absolute). The second type of application involves a sealed gas container. Gage pressure plus atmospheric pressure (usually about 15 psi) is referred to as absolute pressure and designated psia. or bellows.-`-`.1 can be applied.In each of these cases the gas behavior differs. and volume are related.. the temperatures are absolute. the temperature in degreesFahrenheit (F) is convertedtodegreesRankine (R). Therefore. Production conditions such as surface wellhead back pressure and surface temperature are usually estimated i n gas lift design and planning because actual measurements will not be available.1 Tz In gas lift calculations this equation could be used to determine the change that takes placein the nitrogen pressure in the bellows when a gas lift valve is set in a testrack at a temperature of 60°F and then is placed downhole at a much higher temperature.andprocessedwith mechanical devices..

. These charts and tables are not valid if significant quantities of impurities are present the in psia 1015 P2 natural gas mixture. Fig.013) x [(150"F) + 460'1 + 460'1 Z2 P2 = 847 psia (Use this PZ to estimate another and repeat calculation) The volume (V) is now includedin the pressure.````.. In the example i n which and 4-3 are available for estimating the Z Factor.992) x [(60"F) Equation 4. for natural gases. (usually specific gravity).885 many components. the valve bellows pressure in the test rack at 60°F is calculated SO that the valve can be set to have a bellows pressure of 1000 psig when it is operating downhole at 150°F. Special charts are needed for those (0. ZI = 0. Deviation is a function of the pressure and temperature and. therefore.8 1.. The atmospheric pressure is approximately 15 psi. in order to improve the accuracy of the results.013 At condition 2: P? = unknown(butassume865psia) Tz = 2 2 60°F 0. the gage pressure is 850 psig.81) x (520"R) conditions. Atcondition2. Assume PZ are available that list deviation (Z) factors for nitro= 850 psia (835 psig). then Z = 0.`. and it is readily available. PI . 4-1. 4-1 and for sweet natural gases from Fig.```.``.992 = Now apply equation 4. 4-2 and 4-3. temperaIf similar calculations are made with natural gas. 2 gen and for natural gas mixtures denoted by some property Now apply equation 4. temperature.2 (1.7condition at little in size VI is equal to VZ and so volume is eliminated 1: from the equation...`. (use the above data).`. The Z factor remains. PZ = 7 9 2 p s i a ( u s e t h i s PZ to estimate another ZZ It becomes very apparent that the accuracyof the calcuand repeat) lation depends on having reliable information for pressure. At condition 1: --`````.`. 4-2 ture.2 1015 psia P1 VI Z II T - P2 V? Z? T? - Pz (0.`.-`-`. The previous example is modified as follows: The gas is nitrogen. which is Z also different from the factor for a natural gas mixture Z of From Fig. 4-3. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. and deviation relationship. N2 is non-toxic 2 actual gas stream being considered. P I = 1015 psia (1000 psig) the type of gas must be identified because theZ factor for T I = 150°F methane is different from the factor for nitrogen.. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. For bellows is considered a sealed container that changes very example.API TITLEUVT-b 36 '34 07322'30 0 5 3 2 8 b 9 T T 1 Gas Lift Deviation factors can be obtained for nitrogen from Fig. assume the gas specific gravity is 0. Charts assumed pressure is needed to estimate ZZ. The deviation or compressibility factor appears in the (Z) following equation: ~- FromFig. . P2 isunknown.885) (610"R) x (0. and Z factors.2.`--- In this example. ZI = 1. T? = 60°F.butan So the Z factor is related to the particular gas vapor. To apply the Z factor. These compressibility(deviation account factors factors)nonthe for behavior of ideal accuracy and improve the gas of calculationsforoilfieldsystems. A compressibility factor (Z) is used to denote deviation from ideal conditions. This example does not take into account the deviation from ideal behavior..PZ ~or TI (1000 psig +psi) 15 (150°F T? or + 460) - P? + (600F - 460"F) (1015 psia) ( 6 1 O'R) P Z (520"R) then P? = 865 psia PI = TI 1015 psia (1000 psig 150°F + 15 psi) This is the absolute pressure with ideal behavior. The user should be careful to Note: Nitrogen (N?) is used in the gas lift valve bellows ensure that the table or chart being used represents the because N behavior is well known.. itis also a functionof gas specific gravity (gas specific gravityis based on composition).

`.````.`...``..`. .`. “Phase Relations of Gas-Condensate Fluids” Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.A P I TITLE*VT-6 Facilities Application GasGas and 94 m 0732290 0532870 713 m for Gas Lift 37 Fig.```.. PSlA Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002... Bureau of Mines Monograph 10 Volume 2.Compressibility factors for Nitrogen.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`--- N PRESSURE. 4-1 .`..-`-`.

``. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.300 psi) Courtesy Exxon Production Research Company Fig.-`-`.. 4-2 ....```. 4-3 .`.`.Z-Chart (100 .`.A P I TITLEUVT-b 9 4 38 Lift m 0732290 0532873 b5T Gas m 1 PROBLEM EXAMPLE: GIVEN: Tavo 100°F = Fig.````.2000 psi) data from CNGA Bu1 T5-461 and Standing-Katz AIME Transactions 1942 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.`..`--- ... --`````..Z-Chart (300 .

volume. liquid gravity. temperature) relationship. One correcting method is to use Table 4-1 by H . Another area related to gas behavior occurs in the design and sizing of surface compressors and dehydration facilities. The pressure inside the bellows will vary as the temperature varies. Various correlations are available for estimating the changes in the properties of crude oils as the pressure and temperature of the production system change. Tables and charts provide the data needed for calculations. a recombined separator liquid and gas sample is used.848) x (820 psig) = 695 psig Pressure Correction The dome. equations are not used directly.`. W.`. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Temperature Correction The temperature correction is actually an adjustment from wellbore temperature to a test rack temperature of 60°F. estimates of downhole gas pressure. Offset wells in the same reservoir can be a good source of information relating to crude oil and dissolved gas characteristics such as gas-liquid ratios and gas composition.A P I T I T L E a V T . calculate the dome pressure at 60°F in a test rack if Pmt = 820 psig at 140°F. Most manufacturers cool the gas lift valves to 60°F in a cooler and thus have a consistent and repeatable temperature at which to set the nitrogen pressure in the bellows: however. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. In the shop the valve is placed in a special test rack fixture and the valve is set by calculating a test rack opening pressure and thenslowly bleeding the nitrogen from the bellows until the test rack opening pressure just barely opens the valve. install. If a sample from the reservoir cannot be obtained.`. estimating the gas passage through a gas lift valve and.. downhole fluid pressure.-`-`. in the gas lift valve is used to provide a controlled closing pressure so that the gas lift --`````.`. although some valves use a spring or nitrogen pressure plus a spring. for a downhole temperature at valve (from Table 4-1) @ Downhole Temperature(fromvalvemechanicscalculation) Subsurface Applications Techniques for estimating gas behavior may be applied to subsurface applications in computing injection gas pressure profiles. It will be at some higher temperature and the downhole bellows pressure (Pbdt) at temperature must be converted to a bellows pressure (Ph”) at 60°F. ~~ .. and gas-oil ratio. as previously mentioned. These composition values are crucial for the design of centrifugal compressors because the internal wheel design is highly dependent upon gas specific gravity and the changes that occur in the gas as it goes from a low pressure to a high pressure. Another possible error may result from poor behavior prediction of the bellows gas. Most of the time. In all cases the fundamental methods described here are used to estimate gas behavioral changes. and downhole temperature are used to calculate the bellows pressure needed for the closing force. nitrogen is used to lessen chances of error because it has well-knowncompressibility factors and is safe to handle.. As previously discussed. in setting a bellows (dome) pressure in a gas lift valve. In order to more accurately describe gas behavior. a reservoir fluid sample is analyzed in the laboratory for PVT (pressure.````. good data on gas properties are necessary to accurately predict gas behavior within ranges in temperature and pressure. Computers are often used. As mentioned previously..```. Often multiple gas samples are taken for chromatograph composition analyses and used for compressor sizing and design. producing a data graph for estimates. and operate these surface facilities.6 74 W 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 7 2 576 Gas Application and Gas Facilities for Gas Lift 39 APPLICATION TO OILFIELD SYSTEMS Gas behavior applications are important in the production of oil and gas because there are changes in temperature and pressure as the oil and gas move from reservoir to the surface.``. PM = Bellows Pressure (psîg) As an example. These correlations make it possible to predict the amount of free gas that will be present in the system under any given condition of pressure and temperature.. or bellows. This analysis provides the gas and liquid composition as well as other useful information on gas and oil properties such as gas specific gravity. Conceivably the “gas” may be a liquid in the reservoir at high pressure and temperature and change to the gas phase inside the wellbore as it moves toward the surface. Millions of dollars are spent to design.. Therefore. this nitrogen pressure within the bellows (approximately constant volume sealed dome) is dependent upon temperature. Winkler and the following relationship: phv = C x Phdt T Equation 4. valve operates much like a back pressure valve on a separator.`--- This calculation gives the bellows pressure setting at a laboratory (shop) standard condition.. The wellbore temperature estimate is critical because the nitrogen pressure setting in the valve is dependent upon this temperature estimate.. The reciprocating compressor is also dependent upon this gas composition but is not as sensitive to changes. The closing force in the valve is provided by the nitrogen pressure in the bellows for most valves. Pbv = (0. The valve mechanics equations.`.3 Where: P v = Bellows Pressure (psig) @ 60°F b CT = Temperature Correction Factor. the gas lift valve in the well will not beoperating at 60“.

878 .674 .889 .683 .659 ..840 .680 .873 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 .732 .738 .655 .672 .763 .953 .927 . ..`.843 .863 .829 .`.769 .828 .722 .75 1 .985 .76 1 .79 1 .882 .903 .759 .933 .909 .963 .776 .801 .996 .783 .710 .777 .980 ..69 1 26 1 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 27 1 272 27 3 274 275 276 277 278 279 280 28 1 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 29 1 292 293 294 295 296 297 29 8 299 0 3O .842 .925 .819 .267 + Based on SPE paper 18871 by H.865 .825 .794 .657 .74 1 .861 .656 .724 .679 .931 .654 .733 .847 .823 .894 .654 .701 .993 .734 .855 .890 .800 .817 .764 .693 .663 .853 .298 X Pbv/lOOO .805 .781 .707 .660 .808 .934 X Pbv/1000 .698 .702 .705 .896 .7 1 1 .700 .0.786 . W.839 .947 .054 X Pb~2/10000000 1.715 .703 .803 .968 .708 .998 .813 .735 .949 .690 .667 .784 .885 .834 . 1989 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.689 ..974 .924 .793 .720 .768 .767 .-`-`.`.836 .676 .688 .665 .740 .755 .779 .856 . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.````.868 .965 .96 1 .`.706 .666 .910 .77 1 .746 .982 .745 .959 .686 .696 .937 . --`````.905 .816 .727 .99 1 . Algorithm for more accurately predicting nitrogen-charged gas lift valve operation at high pressures and temperatures.976 .704 .775 .739 ...814 .772 .832 .929 .685 .795 .876 .68 1 .754 .2.820 .697 . Presented at SPE production operations symposium in Oklahoma City.65 1 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 I27 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 1O 0 .67 1 .736 .652 .670 .692 .730 .840 X P~v2/10000000 2.899 .787 .831 ..26/1000 + and for P v greater than 1238 psia b M = 1.957 .669 .749 .668 .883 .``.753 .`.798 .955 .694 .94 1 .880 .695 .X26 ..850 .729 .662 . Eads.804 .677 .870 .673 .750 .914 .901 .912 .721 .66 1 .726 .714 .822 .675 .987 .922 .728 .a10 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 20 1 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 21 1 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 "F 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 Ct "F CI "F Cl "F 22 1 222 223 224 225 226 227 228 229 230 23 1 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 24 1 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 25 1 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 Cl "F C.```. Winkler and P.765 .892 .85 1 .860 .797 .756 .788 . OK.O + ("F-60) x MPb] And for P v less than 1238 psia b M = 3.664 .858 .773 .907 .848 Where: Cl = 1/[1.9 16 .939 .978 .`--- . T.653 .723 .871 .95 1 .682 .945 .887 .658 .972 .9 18 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 .943 .758 .875 .807 .845 .743 .687 .747 .780 .790 .717 . March 13-14.760 .898 .935 .A P I TITLErVT-6 40 94 m 0732290 0532873 Lift Y22 m TABLE 4-1 TEMPERATURE CORRECTION FACTORS FOR NITROGEN BASED ON 60°F P v = 1000 psig b Cl "F .7 13 .81 1 .7 16 .678 .866 .970 .744 .7 12 .989 .920 .719 .837 .

-`-`. second. An estimate of the pressure loss due to the collars (stacking) can be made. the design requirement becomes one of estimating the pressure at depth for the gas specific gravity used in the system. Since the typical well has negligible friction due to use of large casing. --`````. When the reservoir fluid has Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. a case is run with the diameter equivalent to the collar outside diameter. That is. the problem is usually found in wells with small casing. allows air pressure to be applied to the valve seat as the drawing shows in Fig. In the Gulf Coast area. casing).A P I TITLE*VT-6 94 0732290 0532874 369 41 Gas Application and Gas Facilities for Gas Lift Test Rack Settings This method of setting test rack opening pressure P. the pipe body diameter is assumed to be uniform and the pressure (friction) loss with depth is calculated. Although the gas pressure usually increases with depth.``. the exceptions are the cases just reviewed where significant friction losses actually result i n a pressure decrease (with depth) because the friction loss is greater than the weight-generated increase. Usually.`.`. ATMOSPHERE Pa Fig. pressure is as follows: Equation 4. One aspect of design is the change of gas pressure with depth. as the velocity of the gas increases inside the pipe. The gas pressure will'decrease as it passes through the adjustable choke upstream of the wellhead assembly. . The wellhead gas pressure is required for design purposes.`--- In a typical well. In most systems compressing low pressure separator gas to injection pressure. this small clearance (approximately O. The methods used to predict the pressure loss inside the small casing are only approximate because the non continuous outside diameter on the tubing is difficult to model.30-inch O. First. the gas profile will increase with depth because the weight of the gas increases the pressure.```.. a pipe diameter equivalent to the tubing pipe body is used and the pressure profile is observed.. This effect is observed and results compared. Thus. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. the friction caused by the gas flowing between the pipe body and the small casing and. Bellows One of these cases occurs when gas is injected at volumetric flow rates high enough to cause friction loss.`. The calculated test rack opening P.4 Equation 4. 4-4 . These curves show the gas pressure profile with depth and each line represents a different surface gas pressure. Tables or figures. However.D.D. 14-inch) causes a flow restriction and loss of pressure similar to a choke (sometimes called gas stacking). Gas pressure loss in miniaturized casing is made up of two components: first.5 The test rack opening calculation is based on the corrected bellows pressure at 60°F Pb and the valve data A b and A... Another example of friction loss occurs at high annular (casing) fluid flow rates where gas is injected down the tubing and into the annulus at a high rate for lifting purposes. injection gas is put into the tubing-casing annulus of the gas lift well and the gas pressure increases with depth due to the weight (density) of the gas. there are cases in which gas pressure could decrease with depth..7 to 0. can lead to a significant friction loss in the gas flowing down the tubing. The effect of excessive friction loss on the gas lift valve is a downhole gas pressure that is different from the value used i n the design. collars used inside 2. the more serious problem of friction caused by gas flowing between the tubing coupling (collar) and the casing. the valve operation would be erratic or perhaps the valves would prematurely close because the pressure at the valve is lower due to the choking effect of the collars. The pressure in the bellows acts downward (over the bellows area) and the test rack opening pressure acts upward (over the bellows area less the port area).`.Setting test rack opening pressure Gas Injection in the Annulus or Tubing High pressure gas for injection into the well is usually supplied to the gas system from the gas compressor (or high pressure gas well) and the gas pressure and rate must be measured and recorded so that actual values are known rather than assumed. Often.`. In most cases. 4-4... Second.. 1'/4-inch nominal tubing with 2.8.. the high pressure gas specific gravity will be from 0.````.. such as Figures 4-5 and 4-6 give the increased pressures with depth. The effect of friction is particularly noticeable in miniaturized casing (for example.. These high rate applications. such as in some Middle East wells.441-inch I. the pipe resists the flow and friction develops between the gas and the pipe walls.

`..`.A P I TITLE+VT-6 42 94 m 0732290 0532875 Gas Lift 2T5 m Pressure. 4-5 .-`-`.`.. ~~ . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.````.```.`. 7 SG Gas --`````....``.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. PSlG 800 O 900 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500 1600 1700 1O00 2000 3000 4000 5 5000 tl e 6000 7000 8000 9000 10 O00 900 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500 1600 1700 Fig...`..Gas pressure profile with O.

.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. .-`-`..`--- 4000 5000 u . Q) G e 6000 n 7000 8000 9000 10 O00 900 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500 1600 1700 Fig.`...`.```..`. PSlG 800 O 900 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400' 1500 1600 1700 1O00 2000 3000 --`````.`.8 SC Gas Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..Gas pressure profile with 0.``.API TITLE+VT-b '74 m 0732290 0532876 L31 m Gas Application and Gas Facilities for Gas Lift 43 Pressure.````. 4-6 ..

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Fig. 4-7 - Injection Gas Gradients

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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significant C4 to c components, the gas specific gravity at 6 injection pressure will be approximately 0.8. Gas sampling at the injection gas meter and chromatograph analysis will give a reliable gas gravity. Figure 4-5 shows gas pressure versus depth for a specific gravity of 0.7 while Fig. 4.6 gives pressure versus depth for a specific gravity of 0.8. For other conditions, a gas gradient chart is shown in Fig. 4-7. The graph can be used to estimate the gas gradient (psi/ ft) for use i n a gas pressure at depth calculation. Start with the surface injection pressure (1000 psig), go to the gas specific gravity (0.8), and read the gas gradient (0.04 1 psi/ft). At a depth of 5000 ft., the gas pressure would be 1000 + (0.041 x 5000) or approximately 1205 psig. The user can read the figures at 0.7 and 0.8 gas specific gravity or use the chart to estimate pressure gradient. This pressure at depth is important to design and gas passage calculations.

Fig. 4-8t.4) - Gas flow capacities (0-9750 MCF/D) for known upstream pressure, downstream pressure, and fice size. Courtesy Camco

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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Flow Through the Gas Lift Valve Gas passage through a gas lift valve is the common method for introducing gas into the fluid stream. If gas flow through the valve is restricted, the density of the fluid column (in continuous flow)will not be sufficiently reduced or the slug (in intermittent flow) will not be efficiently displaced. Thus this flow through the gas lift valve is a critical item. However, for thelow rate wells typical of some Gulf Coast locations, gas passage has not usually been a problem. For the high flow rate international oil fields, valve gas passage characteristics are important to successful operation of the well. Gas passage through a particular valve is difficult to predict. Some data, based static probe tests dynamic on and flow tests (mentioned in the section on gas lift valve mechanics), are available. However, this section will cover differential pressure: that is, the difference between the gas pressure at the location and the fluid pressure at the same location, and the flow capacity of the valve as a square-edged orifice. This orifice assumption is always not valid because the stem and the seat do not always have an open area equal to a square-edged orifice.

Orì-

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A P I TITLErVT-6 79
46

m 0732290 0532877 940
Gas Lift orifice. A square-edge orifice is the device used in positive chokes for controlling the production from flowing oil wells and gas wells. Accuracy diminishes when applied to gas lift valves. However, the flow equation is usually the best method readily available for estimating gas passage through a valve orifice (port). Charts such as shown in Fig. 4-8 (A) (B) and (C) have been prepared using the Thornhill-Craver equation. They give the gas flow capacity for a known (upstream) gas pressure, (downstream) fluid pressure, and port size (orifice). These charts typically are based on a fixed temperature(usually60°F) and gasgravity(usually0.65).Gas volumes must be corrected for other conditions. Variations i n gas gravity and higher temperatures in the well influence chart accuracy. If the gas temperature approaches fluid flow temperature, volume flow rates through the valve are less than the estimate obtained from the chart. Because of this, downhole gas rates are usually

Differential pressure is the difference between the gas pressure at the valve and the fluid pressure at the valve. A high differential pressure drives the gas into the fluid column. Conversely, at a very low differential pressure, sufficient gas cannot pass and enter into the fluid. Often a minimum of 50 psi is used as a difference between the operating gas pressure and the production. However, inability to accurately estimate the gas pressure at depth and the fluid pressure at depth can result in a differential less than 50 psi. Under such a condition, the well does not unload, or the point of gas injection doesnot transfer, to the next valve. High gas flow rates through a valve demand higher injection gas pressure and higher differential pressure. At an operating point, a minimum pressure differential of 100 to 200 psi should beusedbetweenthegas and thefluid columns for design purposes. Gas flow capacity is usuallyestimatedwiththe Thornhill-Craver equations for flow through a square-edge

GAS

THROUGHPUT IN

MCFD

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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A P I TITLE*VT-6 Application Gas 94 m 0732290 0532880 Gas Lift bb2 m 47 and Gas Facilities for corrected to the chart conditions before estimating the port size requirement from the chart.`. As the valve goes from a full-open position to a closed position. Focht fice size.`.`--- . Courtesy F: í? and ori- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. The user of the charts should be aware that a gas lift valve probably does not have the exact gas passage characteristics indicated on the chart.`. The small gas passage rate prevents aeration of the fluid column or prevents slug formation for intermittent lifting....``.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. This restriction to gas flow may affect unloading operations and the well may not operate according to initial design. provides informa4-9 tion for correcting thegas volume to other conditions of gas gravity and temperature. --`````. downstream pressure. A reduction in the gas pressure outside the bellows causes the stem to start to close in response to the nitrogen pressure force inside the bellows. The restriction to gas flow through a gas lift valve is caused by a port being only partially open. Fig.`. Efforts areunderway within the industry to correct this problem and one valve manufacturer has published empirically determined dynamic valve performance data for its continuous flow valves.. GAS THROUGHPUT IN MCFD Fig.000 MCF/D) for known upstream pressure.`.````.Gas flow capacities (0-20. the effective orifice (port) area never corresponds to a completely full-open square-edge orifice that is the basis for the Thornhill-Craver charts unless thevalve is full open..-`-`.```. 4-8(C) .

4-9 .20 1.```.16 1.o0 1. O R .Correction factor chart for gaspassage charts.30 1..`..`.``.36 1.0) 300 2 80 200 240 290 zoo 1ao 1 60 140 120 1O0 60 60 40 . .-`-`.`.`--- = 1..50 11 .````....`.0644 Where: G = Ga8 Gravity (Air T = Temperature. i o 1. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.10 1.A P I TITLE*VT-6 48 94 W 0732270 0532BBL 5T9 Gas Lift BA818: Correction Factor = 0. CORRECTION FACTOR Fig. --`````. i 6 1.O6 1.@O 36 1. From Camco Gas Lift Manual Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..26 1..`.

However. fewer operating problems. This trunk line or ring method typically minimizesinvestment requirement for a large field area because the main trunk line is less expensive than a --`````. For example.`.. Dehydration must remove 96 lb / million scf for the gas to flow at 40°F without “freezing. using an estimate of lowest possible gas temperatures on cold winter nights. liquid slugs. It provides local distribution to each well and permits several compressor stations to be connected in parallel so that the loss of any one station does not shut down the entire system. 4. and liquid drop-out (condensation) accumulating in low spots in the line. dehydration.Typicalsituationswherethisoccurs are: (1) separation at very low pressures where the gas stream going to compression has a high fraction of heavy hydrocarbons. The money spent for computer technology is repaid by higher production rates. the acceptable amount of water is usually set by the operator. Methanol (and other liquids) depresses the “freezing” temperature.12. 4-10. If other sources must be used. Gas requirements now and for the future can be estimated. Hydrocarbon removal may not be necessary in all cases but water should always be removed for good system performance. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Only a very rich gas composition causesliquidhydrocarboncondensation. Catalytic heaters may also be used at input chokes or other points where gas expands and cools below the “freezing” temperature.A P I TITLE*VT-b Application Gas 74 0732270 0532882 435 and Gas Facilities Lift Gas for m 49 SURFACE GAS FACILITIES System Design Considerations Gas lift wells are not the only component. Sometimes the heavy hydrocarbon components must be removed by local field processing.. hydrocarbon processing or sweetening might be required before transporting the gas to the wells.. the water content is 9 lb / million scf.`. method is applicable to large land or offshore (remote wellhead platform) systems. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. the take-off point.. treating facilities. The lowest anticipated temperature can be used to predict hydrates with the Katz curves. can be used to cool the gas stream and condense the liquid hydrocarbons. (2) where cold environmental temperatures cool the gas and condense the heavy elements. effective use of gas. Gas Conditioning Water Vapor andthe heavier gashydrocarbons will condense i n a distribution system and cause either hydrates (freezing) or liquid slugging. A refrigeration system. Fig. the At distribution header sends the flow to each well through a directly connected pipeline.-`-`. A good source for gas lift gas is a constant pressure. The second. injection line. With such a system gas is made up from the other stations (provided that sufficient compression capacity exists) when one partof the system is down for any reason. Maximum production. dry gas such as that obtained from a gas processing (NGL) plant. ortrunk line. The gas distribution system can be one of two basic designs: (1) A direct connection from the compressor station to each well.`.`. The advantage of a direct connection system is that any pipeline problem affectsonly one well. These methods can reduce the size of the requiredglycoldehydrationsystemillustrated in Fig. flowline size and tubing casing size can be selected.” If the “freezing” temperature occurs infrequently. A cooling facility remove hydrocarbons often removes to a significant amountof water vapor i n the gas. the gas does not have to be “bone” dry. A modification to the main trunk line systemis the use of a distribution ring so that gas can flow to a local distribution header from either direction. Secondly. This gas source is good because the pressure is constant and the gas canbe compressed to a higher pressure. and hydrates. then gasdehydration with trimethylene glycol absorption is most commonly used to remove the water vapor from the gas stream. hydrate formation (frozen water and hydrocarbons).``. a dry gas without hydrocarbon liquid and water reduces operational problems such as corrosion... such as gas well gas or separator gas. Water in a gas lift system causes corrosion. ora compressionlexpansion cooling method. and lowest investment and operating expense resultwhen the entire system is planned properly. water removal (105 lb I million scf gas) can be estimated. and (2) A main trunk line with individual distribution headers to local wells.```. If no sour gases are present. the water content is 105 lb / million scf gas. . flowline. and lower investment.. compressors and meters.`. However. However.`--- large number of individual lines. At a “freezing” (hydrate) conditionof 40°F and 1000 psia. investment for gas lift facilities depends on gas sourceand quality. injection pressure. separators. when sour gases are not present. major field studies should include a comparison of the economics of each method since the cost of pipe and installation varies with the location. If a processingfacilityisunnecessary. Current computer technology provides methods to analyze systems so that the“best” values for separatorpressure. Fig. then any one of a number of processes such as compression. If “freezing” occurs at the lower temperatures.````. methanol can be injected for a limited time until the gas temperature rises above the “freezing” point.. if necessary. Itis very useful for small systems that have limited number of wells and short a pipelines. at 1000 psia and 120”F. 4-1 1. they are part of a gas lift system that includes the reservoir.

However.. Katz.```.7 sp. careful monitoring should be used to assure that such systems are functioning properly at all times.`. These impurities are also potential safety hazards.. --`````. extractsboth C02 and HzS (sour acid gas) with an amine absorption process.. gas with H2S and or CO2 can be used provided a good glycol dehydration facility removesthewatervapor. Gas at 1000 psia. The sweet gas returns to the system while the amine solutions are treated remove the C02 and H2S. When proper inhibition systemsand metallurgy are used in the gas lift and well facilities.`--- .Hydrate-formation conditions for natural gas.7 sp. gravity will “freeze” Fig. fuel contamiand nation...-`-`. gas) 2.In this system.7 sp.`.API T I T L E * V T . gr.`.````. excessive compressor maintenance. the amine solutions are contacted by the gas flow stream the acid and gas constituents are extracted. 4-10 . One typeof sweetening facility.`. gravity does not “freeze” (this point is just below the hydrate formation condition for 0. 40” F.... Reciprocating Compression The reciprocating compressor isa very flexible machine in gas lift applications and has proven very popular over EXAMPLE: l ..`.``.6 50 94 0732290 0532883 Gas Lift 371 m Gas with excessive carbon dioxide (COZ)or hydrogen sulfide (HzS) can cause operating problems such as corrosion. Handbook of Natural Gas Engineering Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Gas at 1000 psia. 0. 70” F. 0. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. et al. applied when gas cannot be used in the field.

````. et al. 4-11 .Water content of natural gas in equilibrium with water.... 120" F has a water Content Of 105 Ib/million scf 2.. 4'O°F has a water Content Of 9 Ib/million scf -70 -60 -50 -40-30 -20-10 O 1 20 3040 0 60 80 1 0 1 0 1 0 160 0 2 4 Temperoture. Katz. Handbook of Natural Gas Engine Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. deg F 200 230 260 300 400 500 600 700 W a t e r content of natural gar in equilibrium with liquid water.`.A P I TITLE*VT-6 94 m 0732290 0532884 208 m Gas A d i c a t i o n and Gas Facilities for Gas Lift 1..-`-`.`.. Fig ..`--- . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Gas at 1000 psia. Gas at 1000 psia. --`````.`..``.`.```..`.

The estimating technique requires an overall compression ratio (discharge absolute pressure divided by suction absolute pressure) and a breakdown of this ratio into stages.````. For high flow rates at international locations.. Reciprocating compressors are capable of handling varying suction discharge pressures and changes in gas specific gravity or gas flow rate.8.52 Lift Gas rate. Reciprocating compression is typically used where a low suction pressure must gas be compressed to a high discharge pressure and the volume flow rate is sufficiently low that a centrifugal machine would not apply.0 and 3. These 300 rpm units are available in sizes up to 3000 horsepower. The reciprocating compressors attain their rate flexibility (and field desirability) by unloading cylinder ends or by adding clearance chambers (bottles).`.can be used to estimate horsepower 13 requirements. These compressors can be skid-mounted installed on and location quickly then moved when service is terminated..Courtesy of PETEX --`````. The drivers for the compressors are usually gas engine units but may be electric motors if the proper voltagepower source is available. The horsepower is read from the curves (given a compression ratio gas specific and gravity) as an uncorrected horsepower permillion cubic feet of gas compressed.) the years in most Gulf Coast systems. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. The high speed-skid mounted units typically have a separable compressor driven by a 1000 rpm engine of 1500 (or less) horsepower. Higher ratios tend to raise the discharge temperature in the compressor cylinder to a value that causes maintenance problems.`. These curves. The centrifugal compressor can take the gas from a low Fig..Glycol Dehydration Unit.`.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Typically. Horsepower read from the curves is corrected using the temperature and deviation factors of the gas at actual flowing conditions.. along with a more detailed description for estimating compressor horsepower. Curves in Fig 4.. and throughput Centrifugal Compression Centrifugal compressors are more popular where higher throughput volumes are required. or offshore. Their primary limitation is their low throughput gas volume.. A centrifugal compressor is a high speed rotating machine driven by a turbine or an electric motor that also operates at high rotating speeds.``.-`-`.. integral units (power and compressor cylinders on the same frame) are installed i n stations with numerous support utility systems.`.. a centrifugal machine may better fit the application. gas specific gravity. low speed. The larger. . are contained in the GPSA Engineering Data Book (see reference number 32. the compression ratioper stage should be between 2. Horsepower will depend on the pressure change from suction to discharge.`. 4-12 .```.

7 4.`. Overall CR = 1250/55 = 22. Brake HP/million CU. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.```.`. Need additional HP for coolers/pumps) 5..`.`. Use 3 stage machine to keep discharge temperature lower and reducemaintenance problems..`--- .A P I TITLEaVT-6 94 0732290 0532886 Facilities Application GasGas and 080 for Gas Lift m 53 EXAMPLE: l . Discharge Pressure = 1250 psia (1235 psig) 3... --`````.``. See GPSA for temperature and Z factor correction 6. Suction Pressure = 55 psia (40 psig) 2....-`-`.````. 4 . GPSA-Engineering Data Book Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`. ft..1 3 -Approximate Horsepower Required to Compress Gases. Approximatepowerrequiredto compress gases Fig. 195 = (This is gas compression only.

and compression.6 Where. of gas flow stream alteration. The differential reading can be set and adjusted by an adjustable choke placed just downstream of the meter. The suction discharge pulsation bottles for reciprocating compressors must be designed to dampen pressure pulses as well as withstand vibration (to prevent cracks due vibrato tion). Where water is used for testing. The glycol system should contain heat exchanger cooling between the gas stream and the glycol as well as a method for easy access and maintenance of the glycol reboiler. pressor wheels do not operate satisfactorily at conditions othermeanssuchasvortexsheddingmeters. is required in order to feed gas to downstream coolers and separators prior to glycol dehydration.. during system testing (after construction) a nitrogen purge and nitrogen pressure test can be used rather than water (howThe typical method for recording the flow ratethrough an orifice is to use the chart recorder. One of the main requirements in gas handling facilities is to provide separationand scrubbing that prevents liquid carryover into a compressor. Frequent pigging may also be required to remove water standing in low spots.`. making this an easy method for estimating gas throughout and adjusting the choke.`. temperature and gas specific gravity. temperature.the user must be very conscious of changes that might alter either specific the most commonly used devices for measuring gas. the greater the differential pressure across the sion ratio. Even with these precautions. Gas Metering an electric motor that also operates at high rotating speeds. a Methanolflushcanbeusedtoremoveanywaterthat remains in thesystem. Typically. Manifold suction headers should minimize pressure losses to 1 psi. Differential reading. The square root chart equation is: Qg (thousand scf/d) = Cp x C x (24 Hour Coefficient) h Equation 4. nor do they have the vibrations detrimental to offshore platform facilities. away from the compressors. Piping and Distribution System Piping. centrifugal compressors.-`-`. orifice plate.. both inlet separation and suction scrubbers are necessary. .`.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. can develop a significant amount of horsepower and yet be a physically small package as compared to reciprocating compressors.However. and other factors areused to calculate the flow rate (Fig. An adequate discharge delivery system. Cp= Gas pressure reading for a square root chart C = Gas differential reading for a square root chart h 24 Hour Coefficient = A constant calculated for the meter tube. In addition. The centrifugal compressor can take the gas from a low suction pressure through a discharge pressure adequate for gas lift injection purposes if the throughput volume is adequate for the machine and if multiple compressor wheels with interstage cooling are used. pressure reading. orifice size.. Fig. Orifice meter measuring of gas lift gas is one of the easiest One critical point in centrifugal compression: the comand most inexpensivemeasurementmethods.. gas is proportional to the differential pressure across the orifice plate. specific gravity of the and orifice. they do not have the massive frames of the reciprocating machines. cooling. The orifice can be used to measure gas because the flow rate of gravity. 4-15).``. The flow rate is proportional to changes in the differential reading. The centrifugal machines. The need for later liquid removal may be avoided by not putting liquid into a gas system. The higher the flow rate through a given Horsepower estimates are based on the overall compresorifice size. pressure. The methods. specific gravity. liquid removal taps should be located at convenient low elevation spots in the station or in the pipeline distribution system.. 4-14 shows GPSA contained in the GPSA Engineering Data Book section on nomenclature used in these calculations. Gas distribution piping should also contain facilities for liquid removal. For example. For example. or pressure of the gas. --`````. temperature.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. because of their high rotating speed.`. dehydration.A P I TITLExVT-6 54 94 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 8 7 7 TL Gas Lift ever. Two readings from the square root chart are used instead of the actual gas pressure at the meter and the differential pressure across the orifice.. all must be designed logically to minimize investment and yet provide good operating and maintenance qualities.````. Another example is liquid hydrocarbons or water. Thus. separation.```.`. Rate estimating examples in the GPSA book progas. The machine may operate at a This discussion will be limited to the use of orifice meters with either chart recordersor flow computers since they are very low efficiency or perhaps not at all. for making these initial estimates are vide this calculation information. or positive displacement meters can also be used. The system design should also include cooling and dehydration processes that would eliminate liquid condensation in the system.turbine significantly different than initial design. temperature. assume the gas specific gravity drastically changes because meters. Charts can be either square root chartsor standard charts but square root charts are most commonly used.. tests with water are safer).

= expansion factor to compensate for the change in density as the fluid passes through an orifice YCR = critical flow constant Z = compressibility factor Fig. mercury meter = sealfactorforliquid. of water maximum pressure range of pressure spring. To correct the calculated basic orifice factor to the actual flowing Reynolds number = steam factor S Tb Tf Y = to mercury meters temperature base factor.pr = k = = c.````. Applied only to mercury meters units conversion factor for pitot tubes pressure base factor applied to change the base pressure from 14. d = = D e E F F.API ITLE*VT-6 T 9 4 W 0732290 0532888 9 5 3 W Intermittent Flow Gas Lift 55 a A = maximum transverse dimension of a straightening vane passage = cross sectional area of any passage within an assembled straightening vane ratio of the orifice diameter to the internal diameter of the meter run.. orifice edge thickness.. = h.`. = = = = = K L M MF = = = Fb = Fg = P = Pf = P.`.. = = c.. Generally ignored between O" and 120 "F basic orifice factor specific gravity factor applied to change from a specific gravity of 1. usually in CU ft/hr or gal/hr maximum differential range. in. h. orifice plate thickness. 4-14 . Corrects for the metallic expansion or contraction of the orifice plate. L-10 charts meter factor. pipe diameter (published) Of Orifice meter run. Pulses generated per unit volurne through a turbine or positive displacement meter length of straightening vane element meter factor.. Q Qh Fgt Fwl = = = = = = = = = = = F.. Fpm = pressure factor Fv p F. Proportional to the thermal coefficient which varies with density and temDerature correction factor for effect of temperature on steel orifice diameter. Ctl = = = dh. C U ftlday rate of flow.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.e number of pulses or counts liquid pressure correction factor.0 (air) to the specific gravity of the flowing gas gravity temperature factor for liquids gauge location factor manometer factor. Proportional to the liquid compressibility factor. "R = flowing temperature. To change the temperature base from 60 "F to another desired base flowing temperature factor to change from the assumed flowing temperature of 60 "F to the actual flowing temperature temperature correction factor applied to displacement meter volumes to correct to standard temperature specific gravity at 60 "F specific gravity at flowing temperature pressure. Section 2 correction factor for effect of pressure on steel gravity correction factor for orifice well tester to change from a gas specific gravity of 0..`.6 liquid temperature correction factor. Fpb Rh R. Correction for the change in volume resulting from application of pressure.```. which depends upon both relative density and temperature. in. in. c. F. psia pressure reading on L-10 chart gas flow rate.73 psia F..GPSA Nomenclature used in gas metering --`````..Appliedonly = Ftb P = C' = Ftf = CNT = CpI = F . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. inches of mercury differential pressure measured across the orifice plate in inches of mercury at 60 "F differential reading on L-IO chart (see p. dimensionless the product of multiplying all orifice correction factors volume indicated by th. psia static pressure at either the upstream or downstream pressure tap. See API. GI = Gf = H = h. F. Chapter 12. a number obtained by dividing the actual volume of liquid passed through the meter during proving by the volume registered by the meter pressure. to meter volumes to 'Orrect to standard pressure = supercompressibility factor required tocorrect for deviation from the ideal gas laws = d 1/Z = Reynolds number factor. 3-42) differential pressure measured across the orifice plate in inches of water at 60 "F pressure extension. in.-`-`. . Manual of Petroleum Measurement Standards. The square root of the differential pressure times the square root of the absolute static pressure ratio of specific heat at constant pressure to the specific heat at constant volume a numerical constant.`. in.. liquid compressibility factor orifice thermal expansion factor.. Fsl = steam factor.``. = G. psi square of supercompressibility absolute temperature of reference or base condition.

83 for Pt = 888 psig.. = 100 "F 5. Q = 9.Itcandisplaythevalueas a cumulative amount or provide an instantaneous rate reading. meter tube = 2. and specific gravity factors.162 from Rh = 100 R p = 1000 7. an electronic device.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.7 2.`. orifice diameter.`--- EXAMPLE GASRATE (Factors from GPSAl f' Io ? Lo r Q (thousand scf/d) = hu*Pu*24 Hour Coefficient 1. 4-15 .6.```. the volume is tabu--`````. Fb = 210.`. This totalizer method measures the cubic feet of gas input into the well for any lapsed time.5.. 24 Hour Coeff = 0. FPV= 1.A P I TITLE*VT-b 56 94 0732290 0532889 8 9 T Gas Lift lated in cubic feet (or some multiple) much like a positive displacement counter. is sometimes used tocalculategasrate.Example problem square root (L-IO) chart. The device has dials that can be adjusted by the a electronicsspecialist to correspond to temperature. Fg = 1.. sCf/d) (See Figure 4-14 for GPSA Nomenclature usedthis in section) Fig.9636 from T. M = 3.. Gas Pressure at Meter (Pr) = 888 psig from Pg at Meter = (hu)2 Rp/l O0 .`.M = 19.`.1547 from Gf = 0.75 (Gas SP.000. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. a four-hour test.5 = 1200 (thous.22 from orifice = 1..``. . meter tube. GR.`.Fpv-Fb-Ftf*Fg. or a seven-day period. Althoughthe flow computerdisplays the flowrateasa percent of full scale.. Tt = 1O0 "F 3.5 8. be it six-hour test.19. more importantly.14.024.. Ftf = 0.````.067 4. The flow computer.) 6.5.-`-`. This feature is extremely useful for both short term as well as longterm analysis of the well because well testing accuracy is improved.O98 from Z = 0.

5-1 . Thepound is the force and one square inch is the unit area. Both the pressureregulatorandthegas l i f t valveillustratedare controlling the upstream pressure.Elements of a Pressure Regulator and a Gas Lift Valve VALVE MECHANICS Pressure is force per unit area.`. stem tip. etc) to cause the desired valve action.`. The regulated upstream pressure is a function of spring force and effective diaphragm or bellows area. Force (Pounds) = Pressure (psi) x Area (sq.`. The diaphragm of the pressure regulator andthe bellows of the gas lift valve provide an area of influence for upstream pressure greater than the port area. Practically all gas lift valves use the effect of pressure acting on the area of a valve element (bellows. 5-2). DIAPHRAGM / UPSTREAM DOWNSTREAM Pressure regulator (A) Gas lift valve (B) Fig. A knowledge of pressure.. llVlS0 covers the manufacture of gas lift valves. As the value of psi changes.. the stem tip moves away from the seat. Gas lift valves are basically downhole pressure regulators. " + Equation 5. The commonoil field unit of pressure is pounds per square inch (psi). The force that results from this combination of upstream pressure and diaphragm or bellows area acts in a direction to overcome the force of the spring.```.A P I TITLEmVT-b 74 m 0732270 0532890 501 W 57 Gas Lift Valves CHAPTER 5 GAS LIFT VALVES INTRODUCTION The heart of anygas lift system is the gas lift valve.) If A = in. 5-1A)... the force changes (not the one square inch of area). asin the gas lift valve (Fig. 5-1B). forces the stem tip against the seat. When this force of pressure times area exceeds the force of the spring. A spring in the regulator (Fig. API Spec.````.. AndP = 10 psi F =PxA Then F = 10 x 3 = 30 Pounds --`````.-`-`. force... If a pressure and area are known (Fig. The functional elements of a pressure regulator and a gas lift valve are similar..`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.1 . in. and area is required to understand the operation of most gas lift valves.. opening the valve.`. the total force (F) action on the entirearea is found by multiplying the pressure times the area (A).`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.``.

.`. A metal bellows forms the seal in Fig. A bellows type seal is used in the majority of gas lift valves. The lower end of the bellows is welded to a solid plug.`.`. In Fig.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. the piston has an O-ring seal. All of the illustrations in Fig.`. The basic valve (Fig. 5-3(C). 5-3 . and a port that is opened or closed by a stem tip. 5-3 have the same basic components.. 5-3(B)..Basic Gas Lift Valve Components --`````.-`-`. Small leakage by the O-ring over long periods and friction of the O-ring cause this form of piston sealing to be impractical.. The upper end of the bellows is welded to the valve. a chamber (dome) formed by one end of the bellows and the wall and end of the valve.h P 58 94 0732290 0532871 448 Gas Lift n A Basic Components of Gas Lift Valves Most valve designs use the same basic components.. 5-3(A) has no seal. Fair isolation of the dome is obtained with the O-ring. The stem tip is larger than the port and is attached to the bellows by the stem.``. so the dome cannot be isolated.Force Diagram DOME PISTON STEM TI P PORT No piston seal O-Ring piston seal Bellows piston seal (A) (B) (C) Fig. ~~~~ .A T IIT L E x V T . Convolutions (wrinkles) i n the bellows provide the flexibility required for movement.```. 5-3C) usually includes a bellows. The arrangement of the components may vary. 1 t F Fig..````.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. 5-2 . The piston in Fig..`.

) Divide both sides by 1 . = Pressure inside the dome space sealed by the The area of the stem tip in contact with the seat (A. The area acted onby pressure PI is the bellows area minus the area of the stem tip isolated by the seat (Ab-A.````.```.6 F = PI (Ab . The stem tip is forced into contact with the upper edge (seat) of the port. Opening Forces A valve (Fig. Total opening force.Closing Force Diagrams - /Ab) .: Ab - Schematic (B) Fig. This occurs when the opening force is slightly greater than the closing force. Pressure (PI) applied through the side opening and pressure (PZ) applied through the valve port are the pressure sources to produce the two opening forces... Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. . Opening force resulting from PI acting on the bellows area less the port area (Ab . /Ab) Equation 5. Opening force resulting form PZ acting on the stem tip area in contact with the seat (port).`.9 .5 Equation 5.API TITLExVT-b 94 0732290 0 5 3 2 8 9 2 3 8 4 Gas Lift Valves m 59 Closing Force Many gas lift valves (Fig.4 bellows and valve housing.A.(A.. 5-4 ..) is acted upon by pressure (Pz) applied through the port.``. therefore..Ratio of port area to bellows area. 5-4) have gas pressure (Pb) trapped in the dome. The total opening force is the sum of these two forces: F" = F n I + Foz Equation 5. Pb A b = Pb Equation 5.Ap) Equation 5.-`-`.).8 + P2Ap = Pb& Solving for PI (injection pressure required to balance opening and closing forces prior to opening an injection pressure operated valve under operating conditions. the force holding the stem tip against the seat is: --`````. 5 .`--- When the stem tip is seated on the port. the opening force and the closing force are equal. is isolated from PI by the stem tip and seat.`.) in contact with the seat (Fig.. Fig.Ap) = Pb Ab Divide each term byAb: -Ap2 P Equation 5.2 = Closing force.11 Is the pressure in contact with the valve bellows. Is the pressure in contact with that portion of the stem tip sealed by the seat (port). = Area of the bellows. The opening force resulting from pressure PI applied through the side opening is: Fol = PI (Ab .`. 5-5A): PI (Ab .`. just before opening (Fo= R).Ap) Equation 5.5 ) starts to open when the stem tip moves out of contact with the valve seat. 5-5A) forms part of the bellows area (Ab).A.P2 Pb (Ap 1 . The area of the stem tip (A.Ap) o + P2Ap Just before the valve port opens. F. The opening force contributed by this combination is: FAp= P2 0 2 Equation 5. Is the area of the portion the stem tip sealed by the seat. F. The stem tip and seat portion of the port are finely matched (often lapped) to form a seal. (Obtained from manufacturer's specs.`.Ap). PI (Ab .7 Equation 5. This pressure acts on the area of the bellows and creates a force (Fb) that is applied to the stem. When the dome pressure (Pb) and bellows area (Ab) are known. = F. PI does not act on the entire bellows area (Ab).. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Two forces usually work together to overcome the closing force (Fc)..3 AbF.

`.6 94 60 0732290 0532893 Gas Lift 210 Probe Test A probe test of gas lift valve will establish the load rate of the valve. 5-6 . This is the case as the valve closes.. The amount the valve opens with increases of PI or P2 depends upon the volume of the dome and the stiffness of the bellows. and PZacting on the stem tip area that is sealed by the seat. The gas lift design requirements dictate the type valve (hard or soft) required...Closing Pressure Diagrams Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. The reciprocal of the load rate. made by the same manufacturer. These two conditions can vary between manufacturers. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. An increase in PI or PZ will move the stem tip proportionately further from the seat and allow more gas passage... inches of stem travel per psi of opening pressure (inchedpsi). The pressure (PI) determined by this equation is the balance pressure. The result obtained is the amount the valve opening pressure (PI) is reduced in psi. PI would have to be somewhat greater.AP) over which the valve opening pressure (PI) acts. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. In addition.``. The valve probe test consists of attaching a depth type micrometer to a valve i n a fashion that will allow the measurement of the stem tip displacement from the valve seatwhilepressure is applied. A displacement measurement is taken at each pressure increment.`.`. A probe test is used to obtain the load rate of a particular valve design. Production Pressure Effect Pictorial (A) Schematic (B) Fig. is another form of load rate presentation. prevents rapid full opening of most valves.`--- Pictorial Schematic Fig.. .Ap). Slight increases in PI or P2 normally cause only slight additional valve opening. the valve (Fig. The Production Pressure Effect (PPE) represents the amount that the opening pressure (PI) is reduced as a result of the assistance of PZ. Valve Load Rate PPE (sometimes referred to as tubing effect) is obtained by multiplying production pressure (Pz) by the area over which it is applied (Ap) and dividing the force obtained by the area (Ab . Actually the valve stem tip is still on seat and only slight leakage by the stem tip and seat maybe observed.API T I T L E t V T .. “soft” valve A will have greater opening or closing stem travel changes with respect to the same increase or decrease in PI or P2. A “stiff’ valve has slight changes in opening and closing stem travel with respect to an increase or decrease in PI or PZ. Pressure is incrementally applied above and below the stem tip in contact with the full bellows area.Opening Force Diagrams As discussed earlier.`. The compressibility of the nitrogen charge in the dome and the spring rate of the bellows (load increase per unit travel).-`-`. excessive friction. A decrease in PI or P2 will load the stem tip harder against the seat and cause a tighter stem tip to seat seal. and bellows yielding.```.. 5-5A) is opened by the forces of PI acting on the area of the bellows less the area of the port (Ab . it establishes the maximum stem tip travel (to mechanical stops) and discloses stacking of the convolutions. Without P2 to assist opening.````. 5-5 . as well as between valves of different styles. One definition of load rate is the measure of the amount of opening pressure required for each inch of valve stem travel (psihnch).`.

2 3 4 5 6 Flowing P r o d u c t i o n Pressure .12 If the PPEF reported as a decimal. = 0. Valve specifications and performance test conditions are included in Fig.625 inches Port I. One. This of is the production closing pressure of the valve.-`-`.`. Information obtained from the dynamic flow test and the probe test for a particular valve are used together to predict gas passage and valve action at conditions other than test conditions.D.77 sq. --`````.Equation 5.`..Ad&) is called the Production Pressure Effect Factor (PPEF). Some texts refer to this ratio as Tubing Effect Factor (TEF). if reported as a percentage. 5-6) will be equal to the injection gas opening pressure (Pl) if the production pressure remains constant. Injection gas volumetric throughput is plotted against flowing production pressures using a constant injection pressure of 535 psig and 550 psig. VALVE CHARACTERISTICS Dynamic Flow Test A dynamic flow consists of flowing gas through a gas test lift valve and measuring the gas passage at different pressure conditions. Even if surface injection gas is stopped after the operating valve is opened.41 inches Angle of Tapered Seat = 45" Performance Tests: Constant Injection Gas Pressure= 535 and 550 psig Test Rack Closing Pressure = 485 psig Slope of ThrottlingRange = 9.`.```.. 5-7 . at a production pressure equal to the injection gas pressure of 535 and 550 psig. It is obtained by subtracting the closing pressure from the opening pressure. Fig. At this point the valve is open.. the pressure in the annulus must bleed down from the opening pressure to the closing Gas Lift Valve Specifications: Effective Bellows Area = 0.````.D.. PPEF P E = P2 P 1O0 Closing Pressure The closing pressure of the valve (Fig.16 Equation 5.100 p s i g Valve Spread Spread is the difference between opening and closing pressure of an injection pressure operated gas lift valve when its primary opening and closing action is controlled by changes in injection gas pressure. on Stem = 0. 5-7 represents data that were plotted from a typical dynamic flow test of an unbalanced single-element bellowscharged gas lift valve. but the lack of an injection pressure to production pressure differential prevents gas flow..``. Valve spread controls the minimum amount of gas injected into the tubing during each cycle in an intermittent gas lift installation. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. in.15 Equation 5.`--- .3 Mscf/Day/psi'ApPf Fig.14 The ratio (1 .Gas lift valve dynamic flow test (Courtesy Teledyne Merla) Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.. 5-7. Equation 5. The second point of no flow is at a production pressure 218 and 294 psig. is PPE= Pz PPEF And. Ball O..13 Equation 5. The curve shows that gas flows at each of two no distinct production pressure values for each injection pressure. The minimum closing pressure is equal to the dome pressure (Pb) only at a time when the production. injection and dome pressure are equal.`.

. (See Temperature Corrections.6 94 62 0732290 0532895 093 9 Gas Lift pressure of the valve. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. The pressure change that occurs as a result of heating or cooling the fixed column of gas can be calculated.`. The opening pressure (PI) of a particular valve in the well. most of this work is done at 60*E In practice..PRESSURE SOURCE. Chapter 4.and Table 4-1. under operating conditions.``. 3.````. The design also specifies the production pressure and the temperature at the valve when it opens.) It is not practical to set a valve to the required opening pressure at the temperature the valve will be operating in the well... If not controlled. 4. a. a bellows charged valve is submerged in water maintained at 60°F prior to adjusting the opening pressure to the required value. In an intermittent lift well. --`````. Bellows Protection . and can rapidly result in fatigue failure of the bellows. Test Rack Opening Pressure PI = P1 . (P. 5-8 . Some of the techniques incorporated are as follows: 1..and Table 4-1.`. Chapter 4. the amount of gas injected during bleed-down may be more than is required for efficient operation.```. Chatter can alter the bellows' physical characteristics.PZ(&/Ab) b 1 . Limit bellows travel. It is common for the bellows to be exposed to external pressures significantly higher than normal operating pressure. Hydraulically reform bellows convolutions at higher than normal external pressure.P v @ 60°F 1 . The design of a gas lift system establishes the desired opening and closing pressure of a valve. pressure in the vicinity of the control elements (bellows and port) can fluctuate due to the dynamics of flow. Before obtaining the test rack opening pressure. Hydraulic stop using a confined liquid. (See Temperature Corrections. A spring loaded valve does not require cooling before setting the test rack opening pressure. Although any reasonable temperature could be P t = PI (1 .`. Fig.Ad&) b + P2 (Ad&) Equation 5.19 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.theamount of gas injected into the tubing can be increased by injecting gas into the annulus at the surface while the valve is open.. Depending upon the spread of the valve and the volume of the annulus. 5-8) to an opening pressure that will give the desired opening pressure in the well..) The bellows in a gas lift valve extends and or compresses to provide movement of the stem tip to open or close the valve.Test ruck 2. the valve spread should be set so that the amount of gas injected is less than the minimum required to move the slug to the surface. the generalized expression (Pb") for the pressure inside the dome has been replaced with the bellows charge pressure (Pbt) at well temperature. Chatter is a sustained high opening and closing cycle rate.A P I T I T L E w V T .`--- used as a reference for adjusting the valve in the test rack.17 Note: In this equation.) The opening pressure (PI) equation with P v @ 60°F and b the pressure P2 of O psig applied over the seat area at test rack conditions (Pvo)becomes: P"" b . These fluctuating pressures can result in valve chatter. This equation can be rearranged to determine the valve charge (dome) pressure (PbI) required to obtain the specified opening pressure (PI). Valves must be adjusted in a shop test rack (Fig.18 The dome pressure (Pbt) in this case is at the temperature of the valve in the well. .`.. Mechanical stops. Reinforce bellows with support rings. chatter will usually cause damage to the ball and seat. At somesubsequenttime. all gas lift valves incorporate some form of bellows protection.) must be corrected to the test rack temperature of 60°F (Pb1 @ 60°F). Hydraulic dampening (dash pot) is a common means of preventing chatter.(AdAb) Equation 5. Isolate bellows to prevent exposure to excessive pressure differentials. the dome pressure (Pb. resulting in changes of the valve's opening and closing pressures. is defined by the gas lift design. b.`.-`-`. The opening pressure (PI) of the valve has been defined as follows: When a gas lift valve opens. Gas inside the fixed volume dome of a pressure charged valve will increase in pressure when heated and will decrease in pressure when cooled.(Ad&) Equation 5. To prevent damage to the bellows during period of over pressure.

All calculations (opening pressure.`.```. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.... The opening pressure for the injection pressure operated valve (Fig. The valve may be identical in either case.The injection pressure (PZ)acts on the area of the port (Ap).Ap).`. 5-9 . Valves Used for Intermittent Lift Production up (A) the tubing Production up the (B) annulus Fig.API TITLE*VT-b 94 0732290 0532896 T 2 T Gas Lift Valves 63 TYPES OF GAS LIFT VALVES Classification of Gas Lift Valves by Application In the well. The opening pressure for the production pressure ated valve is: Oper- Pl = Pbt . .(Ap /Ab) Equation 5. A production pressure operated valve (Fig. One is located in the tubing and the other in the casing.-`-`.) must be followed. a valve used for intermittent lift should fully open during injection and snap closed. The valve is physically positioned between the two pressure sources.AP)and (PZ)to the smallest areaof influence (A. Unlike valves used in continuous flow.. 5-9 A&B). Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`--- Intermittent lift usually requires a large volume of gas for a short period of time.17 The opening pressure (PI) equation is the same for both cases. the receptacle (mandrel) can control how the two pressure sources are ported to the valve. 5-10 A&B) has the production pressure (PI) acting on the largest area of influence (Ab .Production pressure operated valves Pbt .) for a production pressure (fluid) operated valve are the same as thosefor an injection pressure operated valve.. 5-9 A&B) has been determined to be: Pl = Production up the annulus Production up the tubing (A) (B) Fig. 5-10 A&B).Injection pressure operated valves --`````.`. It is necessary to insure that the action of the two pressure sources on the valve elements is properly represented..`.. The convention of applying P I to the largest area of influence (Ab .(Ap/Ab) Equation 5. Valves Used for Continuous Flow A valve used for continuous flow shouldmeter or throttle the gas throughput.AP)and production pressure (P2) acts on the area of the port (Ap).17 Injection pressure (PI) acts on the largest area of influence (Ab . the valve is referred to as a production pressure (fluid) operated valve (Fig.P2 (Ap /Ab) 1 .`. When the produced fluid is in contact with the bellows. The injectedgas volume is controlled at the surface. 5-10 . As seen in the illustrations.P2(Ap /Ab) 1 . Both of the pressures are trying to open the valve. the valve is called an injection pressureoperated valve (Fig. When the injected lift gas is in contact with the bellows (largest area of influence). closing pressure.````..``. etc. a valve is exposed to two pressure sources that control its operation.

For the purpose of calculations. Psp = PI (1 . 5-12) does not contain a charge. /Ab) Equation 5.``.. The control section is an unbalanced gas lift valve. All earlier discussion was directed this to valve.. If this spring force (Fc) in pounds is divided by the area of the bellows (Ab) in square inches. 5-11 .. --`````.`--- Spring valve valve Fig. Typical high spring rates (force increase per unit stem travel).Unbalanced spring Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. and is denoted PS. A pressure of this magnitude placed in the bellows would provide the same valve closing force as the spring. Springs are most commonly applied within a valve in a fashion that causesa closing force. Since effect temperature is negligible. Pspis used as a fictitious replacement of dome (bellows) charge pressure. Test rack pressure contacts the bellows in both cases and the area of the stem tip in contact with the seat is a atmospheric pressure in each case. so long as the pressures are properly identified with respect to the area elements they are acting on.2 1 The calculations are the same for an injection pressure operated valve.`.`. For this reason..20 The equation may be rearranged solve tofor PS.. . = (1 ..`. 5-12) has the following force balance. temperature effects are negligible and are normally not considered when setting the valve’s opening pressure. This pressure is referred to as Spring Pressure Effect.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.Ap) b This valve (Fig..Ap /Ab) Equation 5.. 3. P.22 P* Pressure valve Fig. cause the spring valve to function like a variable orifice.A P I TITLE*VT-b 64 94 m 0732290 0532897 966 m Gas Lift Basic Valve Designs l.. based upon the desired conditions at valve depth and for particular valve specifications. 5. 5-11) uses a nitrogen charged dome as the only loading element to cause closure. + Ap P2 Equation 5.`. This characteristic provides an infinite series of areas for gas passage. just as the valve starts to open: Psp A = PI (Ab .Unbalanced pressure charged valve This equation is the same for the production pressure operated and the injection pressure operated valve. 5-12 . the test rack opening pressure may be calculated: PP S P”.Ap /Ab) + P2 (A. Unbalanced Spring Valve: The dome of this valve (Fig.````. After Psp is determined. represents the dome charge in the tester as well as at the operating depth. Pilot Valves: A pilot valve (Fig.```. Casing 2.-`-`. A fixed orifice is not normally used.13) offers the advantageof a large port combined with close control overvalve spread. a value for pressure (psi) is obtained. Unbalanced Pressure Charged Valve: An unbalanced spring valve withno dome pressure (Fig.

09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Fig. When the control valve closes.Pilot valve 4. Wireline methods are being used to run and pull valves.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. no through tubing restriction results. Fig.-`-`.`.````. Fig.`. of too numerous to include in this manual. Wireline Retrievable Valve and Mandrel These valve mandrels are commonly called Retrievable or Sidepocket Mandrels. 5-13 . the main valve (large port) opens: and when the control line run through the inside of the tubing (Fig.5-15B). 5-15B and 5-15C).. A valve closes.. The valve is reached by wiresure operated valve.(Fig. Retrieval in the name comes from the wireline retrievability of the valve. There are many types special application valves.`.``. CONTROL VALVE PISTON BLEED PORT MAIN VALVE Pilot valve Fig.. 5-14B illustrates a typical wireline tool string used to run or pull valves in retrievable mandrels. -16). of The principles of operation most special valves are similar to those of the more widely used types valves of discussed in the foregoing.`. It should also be noted that almost all types of valves are available in both retrievable or non-retrievable form and with various types of check valves. 5-14A illustrates a well equipped with sidepocket mandrels.A P I TITLExVT-b 94 0732290 0532898 AT2 Gas Lift Valves 65 Unlike conventional valves and mandrels (Fig.Wireline tool strings and retrievable mandrels --`````.. Other Types of Valves: New types of valves are constantly being developed to keep pace with the general evolution of gas lift technology. the and tubing pressure act the control section the same on in 5 valve is installed within the interior portion of the sidewaythatthey do on an unbalanced injection prespocket mandrel (Fig.. . Tools that are normally run through the a spring returns the main valveto a closed position. In addition to standard weight bar and wireline jars.```.. When the control valve opens. flowing through Gas valve receiver (Pocket) forms a part of the mandrel and is offset from the main bore of the tubing and mandrel the small portof the control section acts the piston of on the main valve to open it. In most cases. tubing can still be run. 5-14 . 5-14A). the main valve closes. a kickover tool of some type is used..`..

5-17B).`--- LATCH PORTS SIDEPOCKEl VALVE PACKING (VALVE TO POCKET SEAL) . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. 5-17C) within the mandrel is often used to cause forced alignment....API T I T L E t V T . In addition to containing seal bores and porting. . 5-15 .```.. In addition to the pocket.-`-`. The bottom (and sometimes the top) of the pocket provides a second port that communicates with the tubing (see Fig. A controlled shoulder within the mandrel can also engagethe wireline tools toaid in locating the mandrel. many sidepocket mandrels have aids that are designed to facilitate locating the mandrel with wireline toolsand aligning the valve carried by the tools with the mandrel pocket.`. LATCH LATCH RETAINING SHOULDER PACKING (VALVE TO POCKET SEAL) PORTS TO ANNULUS t =“ l Fig. This stop will properly position the tools in a vertical position above the mandrel pocket.`.`. with its packing. 5-15C and 5-17A).Details of conventional valve . Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. The pocket will normally have two distinct bores to accommodate the valve packing..Details of wireline retrievable valve Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. Kickover tools also help locate the mandrel and align the valve or pullingtool with the mandrel pocket (Fig. A shoulder or undercut in the pocket maybeused for this purpose (Fig.. 5-15C). VALVE LATCH SIDEPOCKET MANDREL (A) GAS LIFT VALVE VERTICALLY AND RADIALLY ALIGNED AND KICKED OVER. After the mandrel has been located and the valve or tool aligned.At this time. The packing bores are smooth and closely controlled dimensionally.`. and seat. 5-1 7 . 5-16 .h 94 66 0732290 0532899 739 W Gas Lift The kickover tool has means of attaching apulling tool a for retrieving valves or a running tool with a valve connected to it (Fig. I I SIDEPOCKET (VALVE RECEIVER) PORT TO TUBING Fig.``. 5-15) must have a receiver (pocket) for the gas lift valve. the kickover tool will “kick” (or swing) the valve or tool into the offset portion of the mandrel in line with the mandrel pocket (Fig. controls any communication between the tubing bore and the annulus. Fig. kickover tool and valve (Valve readyto be installed intomandrel sidepocket) Courtesy Camco.. - K I C K O F TOOL STOP SHOULDER POSITIONS KICKOVERTOOL AND VALVE VERTICALLY WITH RESPECT TO THE MANDREL SIDEPOCKET FINGER SLOT HELICALSURFACE IS ENGAGED BY THE LOCATING FINGER OF THE KICKOVER TOOL. The gaslift valve.`. 5-17C shows a stop for this purpose located in the mandrel. stem.Sidepocket mandrel. An orienting sleeve (Fig. Between the two smooth packing bores is located one of the ports that will allow a path for communicating between the tubing and the annulus. THE UPWARD FORCE APPLIED TO THE FINGER AGAINST THIS SURFACE CAUSES THE KICKOVER TOOL TOROTATE INTO ALIGNMENT THE WITH FINGER SLOT. Inc.````. rR 1 VALVE MOUNTED OUTSIDE THE MANDREL (TUBING MUST BE PULLED TO HAVE ACCESS TO THE VALVE) CONVENTIONAL GAS LIFT VALVE REVERSE FLOW CHECK THREAD FOR INSTALLING VALVE CHECK AND TO MANDRE’ (C) Fig. jarring up or down with wireline techniques will pull or install the sidepocket (retrievable) valve. 5-17A). a pocket must have a facility to accommodate and engage the valve latch. 5-17A) to allow installing a valve in the mandrel. Sidepocket mandrels (Fig.. READY TO ENTER THE MANDREL SIDEPOCKET.

and Type 2 is a production pressureoperatedvalve.Configurations of gas lifr valves (After Focht. llow "01". Of these basic types of valves. Fig.Notethatthecheckvalvesintypes3and4operatein the opposite direction from types 1 and 2. There are two basic configuration of mandrels and four configurations of gas lift valves.`. World O l January 1981) Fig..`. .Basic gas lift mandrel types i. 5-19 shows the two mandrel types. a retrievable valve must have some means (latch) to lock it into position within the mandrel pocket. Also. In addition to the basic parts. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.``.". World Oil. Many of the parts are identical.. The valve must also have seals that act between the valve and mandrel pocket to prevent leakage between the tubing and casing annulus in either direction.". 5-20.API T I T L E * V T . The other two are not as familiar.`. the only difference between Types 1 and 2 and Types 3 and 4 is that the check valve has been turned upside down in the latter two.. R. This restricts the seat size available in these valves. Courtesy Cameo. 5-18B) used in retrievable mandrels have the same basic components as the valves (Fig.. 5-18 .```. Mandrel and Valve Porting combinat ion^^^ It is often inefficient or impractical to use one combination of mandrel and valve porting to satisfy all gas lift installation design requirements. 5-19 . Type 2 has the holes in the pocket drilled from the inside or tubing side. and the bottom of the pocket isin communication with the outside or casing (annulus) side.-`-`.````. The four configurations of gas lift valves are shown in Fig.. types 1 and 4 are pressure operated. The type 1 or standard mandrel has the holes in the pocket drilled from the outside or casing side. (After Focht.and the bottom of the pocket is in communication with the tubing. Types 2 and3arefluidoperated. Type 1 is a well-known conventional injection pressure operated valve. Inc. PACKING (SEAL) PACKING (SEAL) --`````. 5-18A) used in conventional mandrels. January 1981) Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`--- REVERSE FLOW CHECK Twobasicgasliftmandrelsincludetypelinwhichthesideofthepocketisin communication with theannulus and the bottom of the pocket is incommunication with the tubing..`. Fig.. and type 2 in which the communication configuration is reversed. Actually.6 94 W 0732290 0532900 280 W Gas Lift Valves 67 Valves (Fig. type 2 and type 4 have crossover seats.. 5-20 . Conventional gas lift valve (A) Retrievable gas lift valve (B) Fig.Retrievable and conventional gas lift valves.

mandrel 2. 5-21 .Combinations of valve types and mandrel types (After Focht. annular flow. 3 / l ~ ..figurationshave When they are used. as are pressure operated. B-valve 2. C-valve3. fluid operated. annular flow. fluid operated.`.Newcombinationsareconthey tend to causeheading or sluggingtypeproduction.``. dard type of completion. 5-21). 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.```. annular flow.. Gas Gas m d l A . D-valve4.. mandrel 1. The crossover seat restricts the port size available to valve types and two mandrel types (see Fig. a problem with configuration B may tinually being considered.H By combining the four valve types with the two types of mandrels. tubing flow. F-valve 2.A T IIT L E * V T .mandrel 1 . World O l January 1981) i. They follows: &valve 1 . more than two packlationsareundesirablefor highproductionratebecauseingsectionsin onepocket.. and H-valve 4. E 3 P a D 3 IIF . I Fig.`..Normally. pressure operated.productionpressure-operatedinstalMandrels with more than one pocket.-`-`. --`````. tubing flow..`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. For tubing flow they are usually preferred.. tubing flow. In Fig. tubing flow.. mandrel 1. eight configurations are available.i nfor the one-inch valve and tos/l6-inch for the 1'h-inch ~h 5-21.`. B C D o - T . andwithotherportingconbeen used. mandrel 2... mandrel 1. fluid operated. .````.E-valve 1 mandrel 2. annular flow. pressure operated.`. Pressure operated. Configuration Gis probably better for this purpose. fluid operated. G-valve 3.`. Configurations A and B are recognized asthe stanvalve. mandrel 2.b P 68 94 0732290 0532903 117 Gas Lift There are eight possible configurations using the four occur.

`. A varying injection gas line pressure will also cause the fluid level to rise and fall. The principles of tubing and annular flow gas lift ‘are the same.Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods 69 CHAPTER 6 CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT DESIGN METHODS INTRODUCTION Gas lift is a process of lifting fluids from a well by the continuous injection of relatively high pressure gas to reduce the flow gradient (continuous flow) or by the injection of gas underneath an accumulated liquid slug in a relatively short period of time to move the slug to the surface (intermittent lift). some fluid is pushed through any gas lift valve beneath the fluid Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. however.``. Design of continuous flow gas lift installations using injection pressure operated valves is covered in API RP 11V652. Gas is injected at some point in the flow pattern causing an increase in gas-liquid ratio above that point... casing. Continuous flow gas lift is essentially a continuation of natural flow. Also. The examples used in this chapter will be tubing flow. but well conditions may be such that running a packer is undesirable. Typical sizes range from 1-inch tubing inside 2’/%-inch O.D. This often results in “heading” or “slugging” of the produced fluids instead of a smooth continuous flow.-inch to 4-inches. Slim-hole completions place great emphasis on continuous flow in small pipe. the tubing should be large enough to handle the downward gas flow without excessive pressure drop. This means that the gas lift valves will be subjected to cutting by liquid flow until the well has unloaded to its working fluid level.`. tubing inside 103/4-inchO. . the flow may be classified as tubing or annular flow.. 6-2.-`-`.````. ( B ) Intermittent gas lift performance TYPES OF INSTALLATIONS less accurate than that through tubing. 6-1.. Each time the fluid level is lowered. The prediction of annular flow gradients is probably a little Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.. or larger. The best continuous flow gas lift is accomplished by injecting gas at the bottom of the tubing. A continuous flow installation through tubing without a packer or standing valve is classified as an open installation.. Various water-flood operations and water-drive reservoirs place emphasis on high producing rates requiring large tubing sizes. For maximum benefit the gas should be injected as deeply as possible. Both types are shown schematically in Fig. Continuous flow gas lift may be utilized in numerous types of installations as well as numerous combinations of tubing and casing sizes. This type of installation has certain disadvantages. tubing inside large casing. In general.. Continuous flow gas lift design will be discussed in this chapter.D. Annular flow is the injection of gas down the tubing string and the production of fluids through the tubingcasing annular space. valves are generally needed to establish the point of gas injection and this point may be through a valve or orifice somewhere above total depth. Total fluid producing rates in excess of 50. it is generally intended that only one valve be open during injection.D.D.(A) Continuous gas lift performance. If injection is through valves. This is shown graphically in Fig. the fluids must be unloaded from the annular space. and larger. Any time the well is placed back on production. casing to 3Vz-inch O. Intermittent lift design will be discussed in a later chapter.`--- L L L f INJECTED _ I INJECTED QAI r Fig. This increased gas-liquid ratio results in a reduced flowing gradient.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Flow up the tubing string covers a range of sizes from ’/.```.000 B/D have been reported through the annulus of 3Ih-inch O.`.. This type of installation is seldom recommended. Because of pressure limitations.. 6-1 .`.

Injection gas is entering total depth exceeds the static bottomhole pressure. No pressure drawdown across the formation occurs during U-tubing operations because the tubing pressure at In Fig.`.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.Fundamentals of gas lift design --`````. Unloading continues from the top valve which remains open until the second valve is uncovered. Once the fluid has been unloaded from the annular space. this valve may become fluid-cut. CONTINUOUS FLOW UNLOADING SEQUENCE Continuous flow unloading of a tubing-flow installation dueto the pressureexerted by theliquidcolumn in the tubing.. This isthetubingthroughthetopandsecondvalves.`. Another possibility is that some of the actual production may rise and come through the gas lift valves beneath the operating valve because of less friction in the large annular space.Withthe PRESSURE ... 6-3(A) is uncovered.. the fluids do not rise in the annular space and. therefore. . Therefore... fluid from the casing is transferred into the uncovered. there is no re-entry of fluids into the annulus. Eventually. When a semi-closed installation is inoperative. This type of installation is recommended for most continuous flow wells.```.-`-`. and injection gas is entering the tubing through tubing through open valves and U-tubed by injection gas this valve. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. pressure being exerted on the top of the liquid column in the casing. 6-3(C) all valves are open.`. A semi-closed installation is one in which a packer is run but no standing valve is used. 6-3. PSI 1 I I I 1OOO2000 - I ! 3000 - t W U 4000- f \ 5000- 6000 - Fig.`. The top valve is is illustrated in Fig. Experience has shown that gas lift valves located beneath the operating valve will generally be fluid-cut when an open installation is pulled. In Fig.````..a stabilized level is maintained. the well will stabilize much quicker when placed back on operation. Reverse check valves on the gas lift valves prevent fluids from entering the casing-tubing annular space and are recommended for all continuous flow installations.A P I TITLEtVT-b 70 9 4 M 0732290 0532903 T 9 T 1 Gas Lift m level. 6-2 . 6-3(B) all valves are open.``..`. Until the top valve in Fig.

-`-`.. (C) Injection gas entering tublng throughtopandsecondvalvelmmed- lately after second valve uncovered.`..`. The flow of injection gas through the second valve has lowered the flowing tubing pressure at the depth of the second valve. The second and third valves are uncovered.`--- (A) Fluid from casing bring transferred into tublng through all valves and u-tubed by injection gas pressure to surface.. 6-3 . The flowing tubing pressure at the depth of the top valve is decreased by injecting a high volume of gas through the top valve to uncover the second valve.API ITLEaVT-6 T 9 4 W 0732290 0532904 926 71 Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods fluid level in the casing below the depth of the second valve. This allows the injection gas to enter the tubing through the third valve. Injection gas is entering the tubing through the third valve.`. 6-3(D) the top valve is closed and all other valves are open..```. and injection gas enters the tubing through the second valve.````. This high injection gas-liquid ratiois required for only ashort time. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. and the third and bottom valves are open. The third and bottom valves are not uncovered. bottom valve cannot be uncovered. In Fig. Injection gas is entering the tubing through the second valve.. The second valve must remain open until the third valve is uncovered. In Fig. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.. Before the top valve will close. the casing pressure must decrease slightly.`. In Fig.``. and injection gas is entering the tubing through both valves.. (F) Produclngrateequalscapacltyof tubing from third valve for available injection pressure. The bottom valve is below the fluid level in the casing. the tubing pressure is less than the casing pressure at valve depth. 6-3(F) the top and second valves are closed. 6-3(E) the top valve is closed and all other valves are open. . Fig. (B) Fluld In tublng bemg aerated to surface by injection gas through top valve as fluid in annulus is transferred Into tubing through lower valves.Continuous unloading sequence Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..`. The producing capacity of the installation is reached with the available injection-gas pressure before the bottom valve is uncovered. Therefore. (D) Fluid In tubing being aerated to surface by injection gasthrough second valve as fluid in annulus is transferred into tubing through third and bottom valves (E) Injection gas enteringtubing through second and third valves immediatelyafterthird valve isuncovered. and the valve must be capable of passing this gas volume.

09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.O5 Water Gravity .```. they are Gravity Oil 35" API placed on the tubing string to let gas from the annulus join 1. this is seldom. It is assumed that gradient curves or a computer program for calculating gradient data is available to the designer.P. the design is made without any safety factor. 6 .. 3. 14.SGg 0.-`-`. Productivity index or inflow performance relationship Bottomhole temperature TABLE 6-1 CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT DESIGN CONDITIONS Production Desired -q Maximum Well Depth . Tubing and casing size 2. 8.. A second case.. If exact and complete knowledge of the well is known. such as annular flow and parallel tubing SizeCasing 5 ' / 2 in. The need of.Twh existing well. Other arrangements Gas Gravity . Static bottomhole pressure 12. flows prior to the need to install gas lift valves. In the following design. Also. and the means for including. Assume continuous flow gas lift design is needed for the conditions listed in Table 6-1. Flowing wellhead temperature Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. if ever. 10. and 6-6 show a graphical solution for design based is fixed. an optimum design can be readily made. Depth-pressure gradient data is essential to the design. The mandrel spacing 6-4.D.J BLPD/psi 0.`. A step-by-step explanation valves are needed in all the existing mandrels and then follows: determine the set pressures for the valves.`.4 (Gross It is common practice to use the annular space between Fluid) Formation R. If gas lift valves are installed. there are three distinct types of design Bottom Hole problems.`. 13.`. Available Gas Pressure . OD there must be a passageway for gas to travel downward to Surface Wellhead the point of injection and there must be a conduit through Pressure .F. Unfortunately.65 of equipment. . --`````.g. a safety factor will be discussed later. Depth to the center of the perforated interval API gravity of the oil Formation gas-oil ratio Specific gravity of the injection and formation gas The initial design will be for the first type of problem and will consider the case where complete knowledge of the well productivity is known. OD strings..Tr 190°F (spacing and pressure setting) and run with the tubing in an Fig. Specific gravity of the water Flowing wellhead tubing pressure 9. This will illustrate gas lift design principles.qi 500 MCF/D 0.600 psig ance Productivity Index .P h w 1O 0 psig which the gas and well fluids flow up and out of the well. 65% the point of injection. as much of the following information as possible should be obtained: 1..SG. 6-5. First is the case where valves are to be designed Temperature . Figures is setting valves in existing mandrels. 6-9 Flowing Temperature . 300 CF/B the casing and tubing to conduct the injection gas down to Water Cut . the case. the well fluids that flow up the tubing. Injection gas pressure available at well 1o.Pg 1200 psig Types of Design Problems Gas Injection Rate . the gas lift designer must determine if on the conditions of Table 6-1. it is assumed that well information is exact.`--- 5.. Volume of injection gas available 11. 4. By far the most important information needed in gas lift design is the well's producing characteristics.. In gas lift design.465 psitft Static Fluid Gradient* . Type of reservoir with expected depletion performBHP Static . This will be followed by those cases where less than complete knowledge of the well parameters is known. Desired daily producing rate (oil and water) 7..A P I TITLE*VT-6 72 94 m 0732290 0532905 8 6 2 Gas Lift m DESIGN OF CONTINUOUS FLOW INSTALLATIONS To design a continuous flow installation.``. The third type of problem Gas lift design is best illustrated graphically.`.. Mandrel spacing is frequently done when only limited knowledge of Example Graphical Design the well's productivity is known. can be used with the only limitations being that Size Tubing in. 3. In this case. is where wireline mandrels are spaced in Type Reservoir Waterdrive the tubing string for later installation of gas lift valves. This *Static Fluid Gradient is the gradient of the fluid expected may include a considerable period of time in which the well in the tubing and annulus at the time unloading starts.````.000' 15. encountered primarily in offshore operations.

The point is at 5200 feet and 700 psig.`. Gas would have to be injected at some higher point in the tubing string. the formation gasliquid ratio gradient line will exist from total depth --`````. the pressure will increase approximately 30 psi per thousand feet of depth.````. it would not be possible to inject gas at 10. which will be discussed later.``.000 feet.4. the pressure in the tubing must be something less than 1500 psig.Above the point of gas injection a total gas-liquid ratio of approximately 1350 scf/stb will exist. the well will require a drawdown of 1000 psi below the static bottomhole pressure of 3600 psig. Therefore. a series of points can be plotted on the depth pressure curve representing injection points for different production rates. The 1200 psig system gives a production rate of about 600 barrels per day. would cut the depth curve somewhere between 3000 and 4000 feet. . 6-4 and shows an intersection between the two curves at approximately 8200 feet. Assuming 500 MCFA) is injected at 10.. If the above procedure is repeated for various rates. Therefore.`. a pressure of over 1300 psig would be available at that point and could easily inject into the tubing. the tubing gas-liquid ratio would require over 2. A gradient curve starting at that point can be drawn upward as represented in Fig..000 feet). The available gas pressure from the gas gradient line is slightly over 1400 psig and with such a pressure it would be possible to inject a limited amount of gas at this point because of the lack of pressure differential at 8200 feet. For the given well. This assumes that the formation will freely take fluid when the pressure is higher in the casing than in the formation. A static fluid gradient line (0. Therefore. A point on the equilibrium curve represents a stabilized condition of gas injection for a specific set of conditions.`. This is not always the case and the fluid level might stand higher in the well than indicated here.. The well would produce the specified 400 barrels per day. it would be possible to make a maximum of 600 barrels per day from this well by gas lifting.`. gas injection rate. At 400 barrels per day total liquid production and a productivity index of 0. At 1500 psig bottomhole pressure.4 x 2100 = 840 BAI). 6-5. if drawn all the way to O pressure. In order to inject gas at the bottom of the well. 6-4. 4. This cuts the depth scale at about 2250 feet and represents the fluid level at shut-in conditions with no surface pressure. This has been done in Fig. if gas is injected at the rate of 500 MCF per day at 5200 feet. The pressure point is about 1375 psig. and 1600 psig in Fig. This has been done in Fig.-`-`.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. well productivity and other reservoir conditions. This represents the maximum gas pressure available at any depth. 2. Consider the point on the curve for 400 barrels per day. when gas lift is selected as an artificial lift method in a field. It would be of no benefit for this well to have a system pressure greater than 1600 psig. This line. wellhead back pressure. This consists of the formation gas plus the 500 MCF per day being injected. This represents a continuing series of possible injection points for different production rates.000 feet.```.000 psig flowing pressure at the bottom of the tubing.) is drawn from the static bottomhole pressure point at total depth. The gas pressure at total depth will be 1500 psig. gas could be injected at the bottom of the tubing string and a production rate of approximately 700 barrels per day would result. The formation has a water cut of 65 percent and a gas-oil ratio of 300 cubic feet per barrel. The pressure in the column at the point of injection would be about 700 psig. 800 psi gas could be injected at about 6000 feet and a production rate of 450 barrels per day would result. As shown in Fig. some gas pressure greater than this amount would have to be available in order to inject. a gradient curve may be drawn for 600 barrels per day. Three different gas system pressures are shown at 800. Plot the static bottomhole pressure (3600 psi) versus total depth (10. An available gas injection pressure line is drawn. If a system pressure of 1600 psig is selected. This point is valid only for the specified conditions of tubing size. A point can be located at total depth and 2600 psig. Assume a producing rate of 400 barrels per day total fluid. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. An equilibrium curve can be very useful in studying gas lift. Assuming no pressure drop has been taken for safety factor. the pressure increases with depth due to the static gas column. The line resulting from connecting these points is called an equilibrium curve. Starting at 1200 psig. Following the same procedure..`--- to the point of injection and the higher ratio gradient line above that point. The gas system pressure is not necessary for developing an equilibrium curve.. It should be emphasized that this is not a gradient curve.465 psi/ft. For example. This represents approximately a 100 gas-liquid ratio. a gradient curve can be drawn starting at O depth and 100 psig for this higher gas-liquid ratio. For the conditions described. (Drawdown = 3600 . Since a wellhead pressure of 100 psig has been specified. Draw a line 'representing total depth of the well. 6-5 for production increments of 100 barrels per day total fluid. the well would produce 840 barrels per day.`..A P I TITLExVT-b 94 0732290 0532qOb 7 T q 73 Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods 1. a system pressure must be selected. 6-4.. On a convenient scale make a depth versus pressure chart.1500 = 2100 psi. 3. 100. Production = 0. This gradient line intersects the previously drawn gradient line at approximately 5200 feet. It is only necessary that adequate pressure be available to inject at the desired point.

This would not be a realistic assumption for a flowline several thousand feet long. Many operators simply --`````. For example.`. an increase in injection gas to 750 MCF per day would result in an increase of 35 barrels per day liquid production to a total of 635 barrels per day. The equilibrium curve concepts lends itself particularly well to modeling on the computer. Further increases in the amount of gas injected would result in no increase in production and actually would start to cause loss of production. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.````.`. Further increasing the tubing size to 3lh-inch O.D. where a large number of parameters can be investigated rapidly.``.. will result in a production rate of about 750 barrels per day.`--- assume that if some gas injected does some good then more gas would do more good. a point is reached where the increase in friction equals or exceeds the reduction in pressure due to the reduced density in the column. a constant wellhead pressure of 100 psig has been assumed. if the well productivity of Table 6-1 is assumed and the 1200 psi gas system is used. Design considerations in- PRESSURE. Other parameters may also be studied with the equilibrium curve. changing the tubing to 27/s-inch O.D. A horizontal flow model can be introduced which would cause the tubing pressure to vary with flow rate. A rate of 500 MCF per day was arbitrarily selected in this case. This demonstratesaveryimportant point in gas lift design. This is realistic if a very short flowline existssuchasanoffshoreplatformwerethe production facilities may be located within 25 or 50 feet of the wellhead. As greater and greater amounts of gas are injected. This could be the total available gas or it might be that more gas is available.`.Graphical solution for design based on conditions of Table 6-1 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. This would affect the equilibrium curve and the resulting production that could be obtained from the well. 6-4 .. PSI G7 Fig.API TITLEtVT-6 74 94 m 0732290 0532907 635 m Gas Lift 5. Still another factor that could be investigated with the equilibrium curve is the effect of tubinghead pressure. the less production that will be obtained for a given set of conditions... Another parameter to consider is the amount of gas to be injected. As gas is injected. will result in a production rate of about 700 barrels per day. .-`-`.. The greater the tubing pressure. Other factors that could be evaluated would include tubing size. In the example shown.`.```. For a field study it would be necessary to select a typical well productivity and also beneficial to have anticipated maximum and minimum productivity wells to examine.`. In the example shown in Table 6-1.. particularly if the flowline is small in comparison to tubing size. it results in lightening the column but every cubic foot of gas causes an incremental increase in friction. A further increase in the amount of gas to 1000 MCF per day would increase production only an additional 5 barrels per day..

The same criteria of U-tubing from the first valve to the second valve also exists.`. 6-4 has been redrawn in Fig. If injection pressure is put on the casing annulus.`. the first valve could be placed at the static fluid level. it must be possible to open any valve under producing conditions without opening the valve above it in the string.`. I I b n w 600C 800C 10. The gas column pressure is shown graphically by the available gas pressure line. surface casing and tubing pressure are no longer applicable. The PRESSURE O TP 100 PSI 0 1 4oo . the first valve could be placed approximately 230 feet deeper. The location of the first valve is simply an exercise in U-tubing. If the static fluid level in the well is deeper than the calculated location of the first valve. However. This is shown graphically to be at 2530 feet. it must be possible to displace liquid from the annulus to the tubing down to the desired operating depth with the available gas pressure. the fluid level i n theannuluswillbe --`````.`.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. 6-5 . If a straight line is drawn from O depth and tubinghead pressure with a slope equal to the assumed liquid gradient of .`. 7. If the well can be unloaded into a pit against atmospheric pressure. An efficient and properly working system cannot be installed unless both are done. Secondly.. Two considerations control valve spacing.``.Graphical solution for design based on conditions of Table 6-I (Continued) Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.A P I TITLExVT-6 94 m 0732290 0532908 571 m 75 Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods clude determining what size tubulars to place in the well and the volumes and pressures needed from the gas injection system.. 6. The gradient curve above and below the point of gas injection for 600 barrels per day as shown in Fig.```.`--- depressed due to the difference in casing and tubing pressure at the surface...-`-`. .. These considerations are equally or more important than design of spacing and valve setting.PSI 1600 2000 800 1200 2400 200c 400C W u . The valve spacing could have been continued in Fig.````. This would entail some risk if the formation will not freely take fluid when the tubing and casing annulus are loaded.465 psi per foot the maximum point of gas injection willbewherethese lines intersect. 6-6 to demonstrate valve spacing design..ooc Fig. First. 6-4 but the multiplicity of lines would tend to create a degree of confusion.

6-5. It is common practice to carry the spacing design down to the point where predicted tubing and casing pressure differential is 50 psi. one or two more valves at some minimum spacing may be added.``. 6-6 .Graphical solution for design based on conditions of Table 6-1 (continued) Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. it would appear that if gas is injected at 2500 feet a production rate of a little less than 200 barrels per day will result.. The pressure in the tubing will be reduced to about 280 psi. The pressure in the tubing will depend on how much the pressure is drawn down in the tubing due to the injection of gas from the casing. This is about 420 psi...`. 6-6 shows the location of these valves resulting in a design of 7 valves with the bottom valve located at 8250 feet. O 400 800 PRESSURE. This could 8.. Subsequent valves are designed in the same manner as valves 1 and 2. However. it is common practice to use the higher pressure resulting from a gradient line expected from the anticipated production rate of 600 barrels a day.A P IT I T L E x V T . a higher pressure would exist opposite the top valve than the pressure used in setting these valves.````..`--- cause valve interference.`. However.`.L 76 94 W 0732290 0532909 408 W Gas Lift casing pressure available is still the gas gradient line. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. PSI 1200 1600 2400 2000 200c W W SOOC LL o & W I - I ' 600C 800C 10. The closing force (spring or dome pressure) to be set on each valve is determined using casing and tubing For example.ooc ~ Fig.available casing pressure.`.`. --`````. Valves are spaced closer together at depth increases because the minimum tubing pressure gets nearer the . when the well started to produce at the expected 600 barrel per day rate.. Fig. As pointed out later.-`-`.. From the equilibrium curve in Fig. The higher pressure used for spacing represents some degree of safety factor. . The equilibrium curve theoretically could be used in spacing the valves working downhole. suppose pressures from Table 6-2..```.

If this is maximum. The Variable Gradient design is essentially the same thing. This method introduces a safety factor by reducing the casing pressure required to open eachvalvesuccessively down thehole. feet Psig Tubing Press.90+715~0. This becomes a pseudo flowing production pressure line.. Therefore the spacing of the valves below the top valve is slightly closer together. and it must be possible to open any valve under producing conditions without opening the valve above it in the string...100) = 320 psi. In this case using the same amount of gas but injecting at 450 ft. Thus the disadvantage of this method is that less production will be obtained from the well when there is not sufficient gas pressure to inject all the way to the bottom of the hole. Thus the spacing of the valves below the top valve is reduced because of the drop in casing pressure deeper in the well. The following discussion contains various ways of adding safety factor. then some lower pressure should be used to allow for minor losses and control of injection rate. It must be possible to displace liquid from the casing into the tubing down to the desired operating depth with the available gas pressure.. 1150 psig or less should have been used as working casing pressure if 1200 psig is absolute maximum available. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. shallower in the hole results in a production loss of 30 barrels per day. The spacing is carried out graphically in the same manner as before. 6-8. 6-4. In this case the bottom valve would be located at 7800 feet where a tubing pressure of approximately 1270 psig and casing pressure of 1320 psig would exist. this would be 100 + 0. This was originally introduced under the name Optiflow design. The point of gas injection is determined as previously discussed and shown in Fig. Therefore. However. if the expected tubing gradient exists in the well. In Fig. . Spacing design in the example should be capable of achieving the first consideration. if all dome pressure were set exactly as designed.-`-`.```.``.`. Psig 2530 4500 5900 6900 7500 7900 8250 1275 1335 1375 1405 1425 1435 1445 420 715 950 1120 1240 1320 1390 1190 1273 1333 1377 1407 1424 1440 Safety Factors in Gas Lift Design As stated previously. However.10= 1273). All gas lift companies have charts for making the proper conversion. The first element of danger i n the design is the gas pressure used. Because of this. and if the well production was exactly as expected with the gradient anticipated. the operating pressure required to open the second valve will be dropped 20 psi below that required for the first valve. This can be done by drawing an available gas pressure line parallel to the existing line at the reduced pressure. All gas lift companies put some safety factor in their recommended design but do it by different means. it is almost a certainty that it would not work if installed in a well. However. they generally do not label it as safety factor. and is referred to as “Variable --`````. of course. the point at which a minimum 50 psi differential between casing pressure available and tubing pressure occurs at a shallower depth in the well. One means of including safety factor in the design is illustrated in Fig. Psig Dome Press. Generally the pseudo wellhead pressure selected will be the expected flowing wellhead pressure plus 20 percent of the difference between tubing and casing pressure. The available pressure is listed at 1200 psi and this was used. then each valve could be opened with approximately 20 psi less casing pressure than would be required to open the valve immediately above it. This. There are two main considerations in gas lift valve design. A different means of including safety factors is illustrated in Fig. Projecting a gradient line from this point back to the producing depth at a gas liquid ratio of 100 results in an estimated producing bottomhole pressure of 2180 psig and a production rate of 570 barrels per day. would be a very undesirable condition and some safety factor must be included i n order to prevent this from occurring. the example design has been made completely without safety factor except as described under item 7. 6-7.````. (The 20 psi drop is an arbitrary amount selected here.`.A P I TITLE*VT-b 94 m 0732290 05329LO L2T m 77 Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods conventional valves were selected without a spring and with a valve stem area that is 10 percent of bellows area. However... tubing and casing pressures would cause all valves to open simultaneously. The pressure decrease will depend on field conditions but should never be less than 50 psi. 6-7. As can be seen from the design. In the example. Thus the valve string would be (Assuming valve port area = 10 percent bellows area): TABLE 6-2 TABULATION OF PRESSURE WITH DEPTH Depth Casing Press. The valve pressure would be set in the shop so that it would have 1273 psi at the operating temperature at 4500 feet..`.2 (1200 . Some pseudo flowing wellhead pressure higher than the expected wellhead pressure is selected.. A straight line is drawn from this surface pressure to the tubing pressure at the point of anticipated gas injection.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. the available differential pressure for U-tubing at each valve is reduced because of the drop in casing pressure deeper in the well. the purpose of being able to selectively open the valves from the bottom up would be achieved.) Thus the first valve is located in exactly the same manner as previously since maximum casing pressure will be available to open this valve. This illustrates the desirability of always injecting gas at the maximum depth possible. Also.`. the example design is redone using a drop in casing pressure of 20 psi at each valve. Then valve 2 would have a calculated domepressureof 1273psig(1334~0. Thus.

in the type of valve commonly used where the production pressure effect is 10 percent or less.`--- Gradient” design. 6-7 . 10 valves are required to space to the same depth that was obtained with 7 valves using no safety factor.-`-`. 3’ \ 10.`. this does not introduce a sufficient safety factor to allow for a working design. full casing pressure is available at the depth of injection and the anticipated 600 barrels per day should be produced from the well.```. PSI O 1600 O 12000 400 1200 800 2400 I I 2000 F W ~4oo(l I’ k L W o 6008 800C qpg: 6760’ 7800’ Fig. The amount of safety factor which should be used in any given design will depend on field conditions. The first valve is located in exactly the same manner as previously discussed. this valve will be open but all valves above it will have less production pressure than that required to open the valve. The Variable Gradient design can be used with production pressure operated valves. the pseudo production pressure line is used..````. However. that is.000 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. below this point instead of designing on the basis of expected flowing production pressure with the anticipated gradient.. This provides sufficient safety factor for valves which have a high degree of production pressure effect.`.Example design using casing drop of 20 psi Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Thus. These production pressures are used both in spacing the valves below the first valve and in setting the dome pressures in the valve. However. the method used is dependent upon the type of valve sèlected. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. and requires closer spacing of valves. The limitation to this method of design is that the safety factor is .``. This becomes the minimum pressure needed for U-tubing down the next valve. However. With normal injection-pressure-operated valves it is necessary to use the method of dropping the injection gas pressure.. using the expected wellhead pressure and anticipated injection gas pressure. The dome pressure will be set so that the valve will not open without the minimum pseudo production pressure..`.A P I TITLE*VT-b 78 9V W 0732290 0532911 066 W Gas Lift placed on the production pressure. two methods of introducing safety factor for opening the valves are available.`. In this case.. If full allow- PRESSURE. However. when the well is producing from the anticipated depth of injection....`.

. This temperature is readily available in most fields and usually consists of a straight line gradient between bottomhole temperature and ground temperature a few feet below the surface. then the design engineer has little excuse for lowering the safety factor and risking an unworkable design. If a type valve is used which mounts inside the tubing and is exposed to the flowing well fluids. On the other hand... Where nitrogen charged bellows are used.````. Fig.Fig. the temperature at the operating condition must be corrected.`--- .`..``. --`````.. PSI I W W LL P W t I ' 1 ..Variable gradient design Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. the temperature correction is not required. Once the flowing temperature at the surface is determined it is frequently assumed that a straight line temperature gradient will exist between surface PRESSURE. If a valve is selected which depends upon a spring to provide the closing force. Saving one valve in a string design is commendable if minimum risk is involved but is not in the same league with a sizable increase in production or a larger decrease in gas usage.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295..`.A P I TITLE+VT-6 94 m 0732290 0532932 TT2 79 Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods able can be made or gas can be injected from bottom with a design employing substantial safety factor. 6-9 is a chart by Kirkpatrick for determining the flowing temperature gradient.-`-`. it is generally assumed that the temperature in the bellows is equal to the well fluid temperature.. 6-8 . if considerable added production is available.`. Downhole Temperature for Design Purposes The downhole temperature to beusedin setting the valves depends upon the type valve used. then having to pull an unworkable string occasionally may be well worthwhile depending on the cost of tripping the tubing.```. If a conventional mandrelisusedwith the gas lift valve mounted i n the casing-tubing annulus and not in the flow stream of the tubing. it is generally assumed that earth temperature will exist in the valve dome.`.

````.```. O 1 1 l I I I 1 1 1 I I I I I 1 I L 1 2 3 4 5 a 7 a o 10 11 1 2 13 16 4 te 17 10 l o 20 TOTAL FLUID FLOW RATE .A P I T I T L E x V T .``...`.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. --`````.`.`.-`-`. 6-9 .100 BBLWDAY Fig.. geothermal gradients.Flowing temperature gradient for different flow rates.6 94 80 0732290 0532933 Gas Lift 939 03 . I I 1 I I 0.`..2 01 . and tubing sizes Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`--- .`...

In this case. that is. the productivity turned out to be greater than expected. the well would produce about 360 barrels per day.-`-`. If. 6-10 . if the well is valved to bottom. --`````. a PI of . Various programs for elaborate heat calculations have been published.. In this case. 6-11. the straight line temperature gradient will provide some additional safety factor since the temperature of all valves above the operating valve is probably somewhat higher than was assumed in setting it. this seldom happens. Fig.*F 200 40 1 160 160 80 120 2000 - FLOWING GRADIENT FROMFIG. This will cause the dome pressure to be higher than anticipated and will give additional force to keep the valve closed when operating at a lower point. A more realistic temperature profile is illustrated in Fig. These higher temperatures may not occur if operating at the lower flow rates. on the other hand. the well will make substantially less production than expected. Because of the lower productivity..```. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API .2"/100 FT. 6-10. with gas being TEMPERATURE O 0- .4 BLPD/psi. ttW W ASSUMEDTEMP.2 instead of . the system will readily unload down to the bottom valve. In actual cases. they will be warmer than the surrounding earth temperatures and will be cooled by the earth.`.``.. If the well is designed for this higher productivity. The equilibrium curve for this condition is plotted also on Fig.`.`.`. it would make something over 400 barrels a day operating near bottom. 6-11 shows the effect on an actual productivity greater or less than that which was used in making the gas lift design.PROFILE IF STRAIGHTLINE IS USED 4000 4000 L I E I ACTUAL IS CURVED (ESTIMATE NOT CALCULATED) n W c X O 6000 - - GRADIENT EARTH 1. For a given flow rate this will usually increase to some fixed differential and then continue at that differential until the well fluids reach the surface or verynear the surface..`--- Actual Conditions Different From Design Conditions The previous design discussion has assumed exact knowledge of the well productivity.. that is. This points up the benefit of valving somewhat lower than expected need. 1 10. As the well fluids move up the tubing. for the assumed case.7"/100 FT. a PI of . In actuality.`. a production rate of close to 800 barrels per day will result. This is slightly in error as the well fluids will leave bottom at earth temperature.000 '0.````..8 instead of ... 6-10 also shows the straight line assumption that is used in most design calculations. the productivity turned out to be only half what was assumed.Straight line and actual temperature profiles Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.4 BLPD/psi. a different condition would exist. but these require a knowledge of heat transfer coefficients that is usually beyond what is available. Assume that the productivity is double what was predicted. Fig. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.&PI TITLExVT-b 94 0732290 0532714 875 81 Continuous Flow Gas Lift Desien Methods and bottomhole temperature. If.000 8o Fig. This cooling rate will increase as the temperature differential between the well fluids and the earth increases. operating off the bottom valve. 6-9 0.

API T I T L E + V T . Various techniques have been developed over the O TP 100 P81 O ~~ PRESURE . on the other hand.-`-`.```...PSI 1600 2000 400 000 1200 200c k W W L I 4ooa S t W n eooa \ /U00 B/D 1sooa PI BID = 0.`..````. The penalty for over-predicting the productivity is that more valves will be placed in the hole than would have otherwise been used. However.`. spacing would be closer together in the string.``.`. Also..8 10. The four bottom valves will be of no benefit unless the productivity later declines and the well works down to one of these valves. .`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. on the development of multiwell platforms it may be necessary to do the design spacing of the mandrels with only minimum productivity information. This points up the need to always over-predict rather than under-predict the well productivity if exact data are not available. That is. DESIGNING GAS LIFTFOR OFFSHORE INSTALLATIONS In marine operations.. the efficiency of the system is reduced due toinjecting higher in the hole. where the pulling of tubing can be very expensive.6 82 94 Gas Lift 0732290 0532935 703 injected at about 6800 feet. results in less production. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.Actual vs. The well will not be able to unload below the valve at 5900 feet and this will result in a production rate of just over 700 barrels per day. 6-11 .. injected gas will not reach this depth with the existing spacing design.`.. Also. assumed productivity profiles --`````.. Under-predicting productivity.000Fig.`. Although there is a valve at 6900 feet. the problem of working down from one valve to the next may still prevent this benefit. it is common practice to install gas lift mandrels in the tubing string at the time the well is completed even though a considerable period of flowing production is anticipated. Sometimes the mistake of underestimating productivity might be overcome by injecting gas in higher quantities than anticipated.

efficient dual gas lift has proved to be a fairly rare occurrence. The most common design procedure is to use valves of significantly different operating characteristics . Mandrels are then placed at this minimum (usually 200 to 500 feet) spacing for several additional valves or to packer depth. Where sand is being produced. 4. Although dual gas lift is one of the best methods of dual artificial lift. In most dual systems. An alternate sometimes used is to space on an assumed productivity until some minimum mandrel spacing is reached.. the shut in period in which flow is not occurring will allow the sand to fall back around any equipment in the hole and can be a serious problem. mandrels are in place that were designed with expected system pressure substantially lower than actually exists at this time. The injected gas is added to the formation gas to arrive at the total optimum ratio needed above the point of injection.```. If. Continuous gas lift has certain advantages over intermittent lift.API TITLE*VT-b 94 m 0732290 0532’9Lb 648 m Continuous Flow Gas Lift Design Methods years i n an effort to satisfactorily solve this problem. the slugs are usually relatively small in size and production rate to the separator and other surface facilities is fairly constant.. In the absence of restrictive allowables. As mentioned earlier.`. This can be done in intermittent lift although control of the intermittent lift cycle works better in most cases if a time cycle controller is used at the surface and gas is injected into the well periodically.``. the design will selfadjust by operating from a different valve or at a slightly Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.. ADVANTAGES OF CONTINUOUS FLOW OVERINTERMITENT FLOW GAS LIFT The technology for predicting continuous flow gradients has developed greatly over the last 20 to 30 years. In some cases. both tubing strings take gas from the same common gas source. Usually this upper limit is assumed and then a design is developed which could handle wells of less productivity as efficiently as possible. Then as valves are placed progressively deeper in the well a gradient from valve to valve is assumed based on lower productivity. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. 3. When artificial lift became necessary.`. If the well is making some sand along with the liquid production. The process continues downhole in this manner: from the previous valve location determine the maximum depth that the next valve could be spaced and then pick the next higher mandrel above that depth. Dual completions became fairly widespread during the 1960s primarily because of very restrictive allowables. In continuous gas lift. Some range of well productivity must be assumed. If the gas lift supply gas system is relatively small. as usually occurs. Although gas lift is in the slug flow regime. However. dual gas lift was one of the more common methods selected.`. Then the next valve must be spaced from the actual location of the first valve even though this might be substantially higher than the maximum depth that the first valve could have been placed. Dual gas lift (the producing of two zones from the same wellbore by gas lift without commingling the well fluids in the wellbore) will be discussed briefly.. in many older fields in the Gulf of Mexico. For example. it is very difficult to maintain a constant system pressure with these periodic surges of gas. A generally accepted method of doing this is to design the first two or three valves using this highest assumed productivity or production rate. continuous gas lift is advantageous. The production rate varies widely with a slug DUAL GAS LIFT INSTALLATIONS different casing pressure. the annulus. Continuous gas lift produces at a relatively constant rate. These are: 1.`. most operators have concluded that single zone completions are preferable to duals when artificial lift is required.`. To set valves in existing man- 83 drels.injection pressure-operated in one string and production pressure operated in the other.`--- 2. the gas is injected at a relatively constant rate. Continuous gas lift fully utilizes the formation gas. The ability to predict intermittent flow such as occurs in intermittent gas lift is less highly developed. This results in one or both zones producing at less than optimum rate.. The variation in flow rate from the formation is not as great but some variation occurs and this can be detrimental if a sand problem exists. Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. ~~ . In trying to adjust to the different productivities. the productivity is not as estimated. Intermittent gas lift wastes any formation gas energy because the gas is allowed to rise through accumulating liquid head during the build up period and moves on up the tubing. of fluid being produced into the surface equipment at a very high rate. the well productivity must be estimated when a gas lift design is made. it is usually very inefficient.````. It is necessary to place an upper limit on what might be expected from the well. The valve is placed in the first mandrel that is at that depth or higher in the hole. it is possible to skip mandrels and place the valves at the next lowest mandrel.-`-`.. the system will frequently allow extra gas to go in one tubing string while starving the other side.. This is not the case with intermittent lift.. All gas used in the lifting process must be supplied. the designer determines the maximum depth of the first valve.

stock tank liquid level. Bleed the production pressure down to flowline pressure.`. otherwise the fluid could cut the polished bore in the mandrel where the valve will seal. Continue this rate of injection until the absolute well gas pressure is about 400 psi.`. Injection gas pressure will be used to identify the lift gas pressure at the well. this chapter will use production pressure to identify the pressure of the produced fluids. The following procedure avoids excessive pressure differential across the valves and is recommended for initial unloading. the volume of gas circulated to the well is controlled.```.. Slowly control the lift gas into the well so that it takes r Fig.`. They are applied by circulating lift gas down the annulus for tubing flow production or down the tubing for casing flow production. If the injection gas line is new. Abrasive materialsin the well fluids can damage the gas lift valve seats and/or may result in valve malfunction during unloading operation. Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Operation. Recommended Gas Lift Installation Unloading Procedure Care in unloading a gas lift well is extremely important since more gas lift valves are damaged at this time than at any other time during the lift of the well. some type circulating valve of TVWAL T FLOW aOIIWAT*: TVWAL 2. welding slag. etc. 3. As previously mentioned. before being connected to the well. A 1. and all valves between the wellhead and the tank battery should be checked. Install a two pen pressure recorder to record the well gas pressure and production pressure at the surface.000 barrels per day. and the entrance of debris into the well casing. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. 7-1. Separator capacity. (An adjustable choke should be left on the wellhead connection to the flowline only if the well is expected to flow naturally after it is “kicked off’ with gas lift. several things should be done prior to unloadingthe well by gas lift.``. Remove or open the flowline choke depending on the well’s expected reaction to gas lift. 7-1 . These principles are generally applicable to production rates ranging from 100 barrels per day to over 50.. If mud or dirty fluid must be circulated out. 5 . the continuous flow principles are virtually the same as those at work in a naturally flowing well. should be placed in the mandrel and retrieved after the circulation is completed. Continue this rate until gas passes into the tubing through the top valve.. At this time adjust the rate to be only ‘/2 to of the designed gas injection rate. it should be blown clean of scale.. but with gas lift. reverse circulation should not be used since circulation will occur through the valves..A P I TITLE*VT-h 84 94 0732290 0532937 584 Gas Lift CHAPTER 7 ANALYSIS AND REGULATION OF CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT INTRODUCTION Continuous flow gas lift makes up the vast majority (90 percent) of all wells that are artificially lifted by gas lift. The gas lift design will have been based on a certain daily volume of gas injected into the well..`. Preventing excessive pressure differentials across gas lift valves reduces the chance for equipment failure due to sand cutting and liquid cutting.) 4.. valves areinjection gas presIf sure operated. 1 . Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.-`-`.Casing and tubingflow installations I I L C-. For clarity. the total gas-liquid ratio is controlled.. If a well is loaded with mud it should be circulated clean of mud down to the perforations prior to running gas lift valves. Hence. maintenance and trouble-shooting of gas lift installations are covered in API RP llV55’. This precaution prevents plugging of surface controls.`--- . Increase the lift gas rate into the well so that it takes about 8-10 minutes for 100 psi increase in the well gas pressure. Recommended Practices Prior to Unloading After a continuous flow design is completed and the equipment is installed in the well. 8-10 minutes for a50 psi increase in well gas pressure.````.. it is obvious that the terms casing pressure or tubing pressure are ambiguous and may mean gas pressure or produced fluid pressure. From the schematics in Fig. It is important to check the pop-off safety release valve for the gas gathering system if this is the first gas lift installation in the system. 6.

Appendix 7A. the recorder should have 1. It could also indicate that a choke has been installed in the flowline. There are several methods which may be used for obtainIn most ingproper a analysis of agasliftinstallation. *Charts 7A1 through 7A14. This is accomplished by the use of an orifice meter or orifice flow computer which should be located near the injection gas control to the well. Quite often. an increasehas been made in the volume of injection gas. After 12-18 hours at the reduced injection rate. Other companies equip 2. readjustment the of injection gas control.`. Decreased production pressure could indicate a drop in supply gas pressureor volume. Excessive gas usage may be indicated.````. Measurement of lift gas circulated to the well 3. Thiswill permit sufficient sensitivity in the instrument to indicate any small pressure change on the chart. Pressuresurveys 2.. Increased flowing production pressure would indicate an increase in separator back pressure. Measurement of Gas Volumes Measurement of injection gas volumes is necessary in order to determine the efficiencyof the gas lift operations. Testing the well for oil. if the maximum wellhead pressure is 700 psig.```. or a broken flowline... it is necessary to analyze the installation. the well having been switched to a test separator.Analysis and Regulation of Continuous Flow Gas Lift 85 7. 3 . Some companies favor a permanent meter connected to the meter run. (Production pressure control is a means of injecting gas into the well at a predetermined drop in production pressure. This instrument will record on a chart any change in the wellhead pressure of the tubing or casing during the operational period of the chart. illustrate some of these conditions.``. Excessive injected gas volume may actually increase the flowing pressure gradient. The meter run should be elevated to prevent condensation from collecting.) The periods of natural flow and gas injection would be clearly indicated by both the production and well gas pressure. adjust the gas rate to the full designed rate for the well. Visual observation of the surface installation 5. 5. A continuous flow well on production pressure control would have the periods of gas injection and the periods of natural flow recorded. utilizing the gas lift valves to purge the tubingof a liquid loading condition. 6. Some of the important factors to be noted from the recordings* of tubing and casing pressures are: 1 . Computer calculated pressures in the well METHODS OF OBTAINING SURFACE DATA FOR CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT WELLS Recording Surface Pressure inTubing and Casing the Two-pen pressure recorders are relatively inexpensive instruments usingtwo pressure elements of the proper pressure range to record the surface tubing casing pressures and of the well. if the installation were properly analyzed. The actual problems encountered are those in the chart given interpretations. water and gas production Subsurface Data 1. paraffin deposition.`. Temperature surveys 3. Recording surface pressure in the tubing and casing 2.`. or that the well has started to flow naturally. instances one or more of the following methods of obtaining data will used: be Surface Data 1. --`````. another well has been added to the flow system. Analyzing the Operation of A Continuous Flow Well In order to properly evaluate the efficiency of operation of the continuous flow well. 8.`. The sanding up or water loading of a well will be indicated.. or a bad gas lift valve will be indicated. injection gas freezing..`. Measurement of surface temperature 4.-`-`. thereby decreasing production. Fluid level determination by acoustical methods 4. The changing from one operating valve to another may be detected.000 psig maximum range elements. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. It is also a common tendency for the field operator to increase injection gas rates in an attempt to produce more oil from the well. The maximum pressure rangeof the recorder should be '/4 to '/3 higher than the maximum operating pressure of the well. 4. Other interpretations might be given if the exact trouble is not known. fluctuating system gas pressure. or sediment in the flowlines. In many instances the operator is content to leave the well alone as long as he thinks it is making all the fluids the well is capable of producing... an improvement could be made in the injection gas-oil ratio. For example.. . 7. A hole in the tubing. Decreased production may be indicated.

the meter run with quick connectors to facilitate the use of a portable meter.. 7-3 . The difference the in injection gas input and the total gas output will represent the formation gas.`--- Visual Observation of the Surface Installation Visual observation of a gas lift installation may sometimes uncover conditions that are detrimental to the overall efficiency of the installation. Inefficient gas injection may be corrected by changing the rate of gas injection and carefully measuring the total fluid production against the injected gas volume for each change. and a differential pressure element indicating the pressure drop across the orifice plate. Equipment problems like this can sometimes be eliminated by using spring adjusted valves that are not affected by temperature. knowing the temperature at each valve might also disclose that the temperature effect on the valves is preventing the well from producing at its Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.900 ft. Where it has been difficult to determine the cause of inefficient operation. Periodic injection gas measurement is required in most states and will give a reliable evaluation of the efficiency of the gas lift operations. Maintaining high separator back pressure. Fig. restrictions in the wellhead. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. SYSTEMGASPRESSUREATWELL: 610 PSlG Fig.800 PSlG (PI1 2 1. The producing fluid temperature has raised the pressure of the valve (at 1.. 2040 m FLOWING 6.````.. Orifice meters are installed at thetest separators tomeasure the total gas outof the well under test. This is schematically illustrated in Fig. long or improperly designed flowlines. Most gas lift valve manufacturers have charts for temperature and gas weight corrections..Continuous flow semi-closed installation The static pressure element on the meter is useful in determining any pressure fluctuation in the gas system that may be detrimental to the efficient operationof the gas lift.`. The depth location of each valve may then be located on the chart and the temperature at each valve may be estimated from the temperature curve.`.A P I TITLESVT-b 86 94 m 0732290 0532919 357 Gas Lift most efficient rate. The orifice meter consists of a static pressure element indicating the line pressure from the orifice plate. 7-2.) to the point that the differential pressure across the valve will not permit reducing the flowing fluid gradient to a pressure that would permit gas entrance through the valve at 2.`.H.-`-`. These charts may be used to determine the surface operating pressure of each valve. and too many sharp-angled bends may be the cause of excessive back pressure as indicated by the production TUBING CASING BDO TEMPERATURE l05'F I 6ooo 200 400 PSIG Surface and Estimated Subsurface Temperature Readings PRESSURE 600 800 1000 1200 1400 1 6 0 0 leo0 2& 2xK) 2000 DESIRED - 41. If a straight line relationship is assumed.Continuous flow equipment problem tubing for flow well Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`. Surface temperature readings the producedfluid at the of wellhead may sometimes aid in analyzing the trouble in a gas lift well. Direct reading gas flow computers are available for instantaneous measurement of gas. 2510 FLOWING TOTAL FLUID TOTAL F L U I D PRESENT PRODUCTION: 465 B/D D E S I R E D PRODUCTION i 1. 7-3 illustrates a continuous flow well that is not producing at its capacity because the producing fluid temperature has raised the pressure of the operating valve to near system pressure.5 PRODUCTIVITY INDEX TUBING S I Z E i 2-718-11 E U E : !72 F BOTTOM-HOLE TEMPERATURE 105 F PRESENT FLOWING SURFACE TEMPERATURE. it is a simple matter to plot a graph of the temperature gradient when the bottomhole temperature and flowing surface temperature are known.```.PRESS..`. paraffin or sediment in the flowlines.. 7-2 .350 ft. thus providing a means of determining the most efficient gas oil ratio... .``. Fig.200 B I D STATIC BOTTOM-HOLE PRESSURE : 2.

By accurately testing the well at the time the flowing bottomhole pressure is being taken. or multipoint injection. 7-4 shows a well making 1. In many field installations only oil production is measured and a shakeout is taken to determine the percentage of water. This well was Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. and improper surface control for the type of gas lift valve in the well should be examined where inefficient operation is indicated. 7-5 shows a well in which three gas lift valves were admitting gas. By checking the static fluid level.and the static gradientof the well fluids. A staticsurvey will determine the static bottomhole pressure (or formation pressure).. immediately evident from the flowing pressure survey that by respacing the valves there would be an increase i n fluid production. the productivity index (PI) of the well maybe established. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. This information is essential to determine efficient the point of gas injection for the well conditions METHODS OF OBTAINING SUBSURFACE DATA FOR CONTINUOUS FLOW GAS LIFT ANALYSIS Subsurface Pressure Surveys Subsurface pressure surveys offer a good means of properlyanalyzing gas liftinstallations. The possibility of wet gas freezing at points of restriction.Fluid R a t i o = 400/1 2000 k W 3000 4000 k! r k ”” Casing Fluid Level 5000 n 6000 7000 8000 9000 I O I I I I l I I 400 800 1200 1600 2000 2400 2800 PRESSURE.600 B/D by respacing the lower valve so that it would operate 60 ft.A P IT I T L E * V T . This can be very inaccurate in many wells because of the fluctuations in the amount of water in the flow stream.000 bbl of oil and water per day (90 percent water). A flowing pressure survey will locate the point of gas injection.. A very common error in gas lift design is failure to space the valves close enough together.. PSlG Fig.````.it was possible to relocatevalves 1 and 2 from the surface so that two valves could be positioned below the point of injection. the static fluid level. Since the well had a PI of 10 BLPD/psi. a pressure is survey should be run while the well supposedly performing satisfactorily. 7-6 shows a well in which it seems that too many gas lift valves were used for the installation.nearer the surface. Fluid = 1000 B b l s / O o y Input G o s . the valves In were equipped with fixed orifices and no increase of gas volume could be made through the valves. since efficiency i n continuous flow is the result of injecting the proper volume of gas at the deepest point for the available pressure. It was noted that the fluid level i n the casing lacked only a few feet of uncovering the next valve with the available line pressure. This was high in comparison with neighboring wells operating under similar conditions. this example. On wells with high PI’S. From all surface indications. It will also determine the flowing gradient below and above the pointof gas injection. This condition of multi-point injection is very inefficient. leaks in the tubing.`. The information obtained might indicate that respacing the valves would appreciably improve the production of the well. and producing from a very active water drive reservoir. the spacing was satisfactory for 1’12 to 2 years. The pressuresurvey did not indicate a need for valve respacing. the well was performing satisfactorily. Knowing the specific gravity of the oil and water is also important if the installation requires redesign.``. Therefore. The survey might locate the source of trouble.`.`. Also valves 6 and 7 could be grouped closer to the point of injection. The flowing pressure gradient indicated that too much gas was being injected. Fig.`. valve failures.but rather a need for the repair of valves 2 and 3.`--- O 1000 I T C o s i n g Pressure Flowing . the production rate was increased to 1. It was. Since the bottomhole pressure was showing very little drop with time. Fig.\ c I1 Tubing = 2 ’. it is recommended that valves be spaced close together near the estimated point of gas injection. . or greater. Testing Well for Oil andGasProduction Accurate gauging for oiland water production is neces- sary for the proper analysis of the operation of a gas lift well.`.It is a common fallacy to wait until trouble develops before making apressure survey.. A measurement of the injection gas-liquid ratio showed it to be 800: 1..Valve spacing from flowing pressure survey Fig.h 94 m 0732290 0532920 07’7 m 87 Analysis and Regulation of Continuous Flow Gas Lift wellhead pressure..buttheinformationnecessarytoimprovethe installation will not be obtained. 7-4 . --`````.```. an insufficient differential between system gas pressure and wellhead operating pressure. and the flowing bottomhole pressure. fluctuating system gas pressure.. however.-`-`..

OD tubing in 5% in.8OO:l Production 700 bblfluid per day Oil production = 120 B/ D Fig. l l .H. 2850 3300 4000 MULTI -POINT 5000 GAS INJECTION 2 4 6 m@ o &o lobo tim &. 1 . 7-6 ..`.070 ft. The gage was lowered into the well through the tubing. EUE and extended 4.. / DAY INPUT GAS-FLUID RATIO = 800. I . Fig. I 0500 I I I . PRESSURE IN 100 PSlG O TUBING = 2" FLUID = 700 BBLS. in which the water percentage was expected to increase considerably. Under the present operating conditions. .```.. l .. Nine stops were made at 500 ft.Flowing pressure survey for valve spacing --`````. This was a well.000 ft. depth.. 7-5 . fourvalves would be enough to take care of the well. I I . P S l G Fig.070 ft.Flowing pressure survey for valve repair W I A 2500 z I t - 3000 3500 " V. The normal point of gas injection is through the valve operating at 2. with the bottom open-ended. however.. This would result in lowering the point of gas injection and utilizing the lower valves in the installation. l ..````.-`-`.I 2000 I \ I VALVF DLP-Ta 2400 3000 ""1 -2. l . The gas liquid ratio very effiwas cient at 90 CU. casing Gas-liquid ratio. ft.. The first stop was at 4. ~ PRESSURE PSlG - - 8 IO 1 2 1 4 I6 1 20 8 Iniection Gor Prrssurr Well Data: 2% in..``. The tubing was 2-in. just below the bottom of the tubing._ _ I - W k! I I - WELL DATA: 2-IN. 7-7 . CASING INJECTIONGAS-LIOUIDRATIO = 550:l PRODUCINGWELLHEADTUBINGPRESSURE = 110 P S I G SURFACEINJECTIONCASINGPRESSURE = 640 PSlG PRODUCTION = 6 4 0 B 8 L FLUI0 PER DAY OIL PRODUCTION = 5 B / D 4000 Fig.Flowing pressure survey to locate tubing leak . 7-8 shows the pressure survey of a casing flow well. The well was Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. .. TUBINGIN 5-112-1N. The tubing leak is plainly indicated by the break in the flowing gradient at 2. 5000 o 6000 7000 - 8000 90001 O I I I I 1 I 400 800 1200 1600 2000 2400 2800 PRESSURE. I . into the well.`--- A pressure survey of acasing flow gas liftwell can be used to determine the point of injection. of gas per barrel of fluid.935 ft. intervals.FLOWING B. A check on the valve installation showed that there was no gas lift valve close to the 2.`.000 ft. intervals. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. = 5540' Flowing BHP 1770 p i g -.PRESS.000 bbl of fluid per day at the time the pressure surveywas made. The well was producing 4.`.I*e t 1935' a W 4000 O r 4500 Casing Pressure Flowing 5500 5000 1000 2000 3000 Casing Fluid Level 1 = T.D.`. l l . 7-7 shows how a flowing pressure survey was used to locate a tubing leak.. l . of which 97 percent was salt water.. 1 1 1 .A P I TITLESVT-6 88 94 0732290 0532921 T05 D Gas Lift designed for either continuous flow or intermittent flow gas lift. r .`. Fig. and near the bottom four stops were made at 250 ft. r .

and the gage safely retrieved. 91 DAY’ Fig. The well then must be returned to stabilized flow and the survey can be started up the hole..000 bbl per day while it was being regulated.H. below the point of gas injection to establish the flowing gradient in that region of flow. Computer Calculated Pressure Surveys Pressure surveys that are computer calculated from flow correlations can be the best means of analyzing the performance of continuous flow gas lift wells. company engineers or consultants). and updating PI data. As the expanding gas will cool the outside of the tubing directly above the operating valve.`. Fig. trouble-shooting.‘ A P I TITLE*VT-6 94 m 0732290 0532922 941 m 89 Analysis and Regulation of Continuous Flow Gas Lift producing its depth allowable of 120 bbl of oil per day under these conditions. It is important to produce the well until a stabilized flow condition has been established before making the gage run. the benefits are readily available at a very small cost per run.````.. The results of a computer calculated pressure survey can be used for redesigning. ... 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. In somehigh volume wells with small tubing. It is also necessary to provide a weighted section to the pressure gage in order to prevent the flow stream from lifting the instrument.`. it was capable of producing a great deal more.1 F L U I DP E R PERCENT WELL DATA: 2 . Temperature Surveys in Tubing Flow Wells Temperature plays an important part in the operating of a pressure-charged valve. fast as practicable.```.``.. This will also locate valve leaks..`. A definite change in both the producing fluid gradient and the temperature gradient can be noted at the point of gas injection at 4. with the addition of a master valve above the flowingwing valve. They will decrease the number of wireline pressure surveys that are required with their attendant problems and expense. improving well performance. The usual first objection to this concept is “those computer programs don’t match the well pressureswhereIcomefrom. The prudent operator will make use of computer calculated pressure surveys as often as possible. --`````. The temperature survey should be run to the bottom of the well in order to establish a reliable temperature gradient.”Butthe computer calculated results can be made to fit “the well pressures where you come from” with a cooperative effort between the field personnel and the technical groups that are involved (Le.000 ft. the temperature gage will record the temperature change. Since the higher fluid velocities occur near the surface.-`-`. It is recommended that the well be prepared prior to the survey by placing the lubricator for the pressure gage in place.000 ft. below each valve in order to correctly locate the point of gas injection. 7-8 . and at one time produced over 7...`--- Precautions When Running Flowing Pressure and Temperature Surveys Some precautions should be exercised when running flowing pressure surveys in continuous flow wells.I N TUBING IN 5-112-IN INPUT GAS-FLUID RATIO i PRODUCTION i 4 0 0 0 BBL WITER PROOU(T1CN. This was still not the maximum rate for the well andno attempt was made to reach it. O -CASING PRESSURE ‘ ~ T U B I N GPRESSURE VALVE DEPTH 2ooc 4O 0 C OF TUBING .Flowing pressure survey of casingflow gas lift well Subsurface Temperature Surveys in Casing Flow Wells A temperature survey can also be made inside the tubing of a casing flow installation to determine the point of gas injection.. However. it may be necessary to shut the well in and run the gage to bottom as Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Stops should then be made approximately 10 ft.`. These data are necessary for the design of a gas lift installation.`. 600C 800( 966c 2000 PRESSURE PSlG 3945 FLOWING 6. which might result in its damage or loss. They also may be useful later for locating the depth of the operating valve. It is interesting to note the comparison of the test rack opening pressure of the valve to the opening pressures at operating temperature. The well should be closed in at this time. It is recommended that a stop be made every 500 to 1. caution should be taken when a lightening of the wireline load will indicate that the fluid velocities are trying to pick up the gage.4000 FT. and finally to the surface operating pressure. 7-9 shows a survey of flowing pressure and temperature in a gas lift well. The important section (below and above the point of gas injection) will have been surveyed successfully.P CASING 90. A flowing temperature survey can be valuable in locating tubing leaks as well as locating the operating gas lift valve. For this reason it is necessary to have accurate bottomhole temperature and surface temperature data under both static and flowing conditions. Once a fit is accomplished.

a. PRESS. 6ooo 500 1000 PRESSURE PSIC. with the temperature instrument being at the bottom..````. í o 0 990 1150 I100 '0 3. 1 0 0 4.. Run a pressure and temperature instrument in combination.`. One or two stops between mandrel stations.-`-`.API TITLE8VT-6 90 CASING PRESS. At the surface. Use enough sinker bars to assure that the instruments will move forcefully down the hole and not be pushed up the hole by the flowing fluid.```.`. ~~ --`````.`.. 1.`.`.PFESS.`--- . 1500 2OOO 165O TEMPERATURE F . 7-10 . b. 94 m 0732290 0532923 Gas Lift 888 m SURFACE TEMP.I VALVE OPEN ING AT VALVE TEST DEPTH WRFPCE DEPTH PRESS. Flowing Pressure and Temperature Survey The flowing pressure and temperature survey has long been one of the primary ways of determining the operating valve and formation pressure drawdown.. Fig. 7-9 .Typical acoustic survey of gas lift well Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.Temperature andflowing pressure survey gas of lift well I 2 3 4 Fig. TUBING = 2" 2 4 "y O 262 I I GAS-FLUID RATIO = 200. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.``... The following procedure is suggested to assure that enough useful information will be obtained from the survey to allow you to make good decisions. 2.. Run survey under stabilized flowing conditions. Make the following stops recording the time and depth reading at each stop..

.`. As the gas lift valves are larger and offer more reflective sound surface than the collars.Choke-regulator control. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. In an open installation --`````. indicating a false “point of balance. e.5 0 above Stop 2 .-`-`. It takes practice. tubing flow well downstream of choke control).`. with no packer. stops if using a 3 hr. 7-1 1 illustrates a wellhead installation using only a choke as a gas control. many cases choking may cause In freezing problems.5‘ above Stop 4 . the acoustical device would show the well unloaded to the lower valve. and a certain amount of art and experience. should be done by experienced personnel..25‘ above Stop 3 .`--- VARIOUS WELLHEAD INSTALLATIONS FOR GAS INJECTION CONTROL This latter method will permit the hot flowline fluidsto pass over the gas line.. Fluid Level Determination by Acoustical Methods One of the most common and economical methods of locating the fluid level in the annulus of a tubing flow continuous flow gas lift well is through the use of acoustical well-sounding devices. clock Interpretation of the survey data is best evaluated by plotting the results on a pressure depth diagram. 5 min.. and tubing all holding perfectly. However. a greater impulse is recorded on the chart. The operation of acoustical equipment. clock.```.Choke control.`. and the operating valve would be directly above.. Fig. before a person can correctly interpret the sound impulses. Fig. and. The fluid level in the casing is clearly shown by the large zig-zag indicating the point of rebound. It may be that the well originally unloaded to a lower valve.. With the packer. CHOKE Fig.````. Four stops around each mandrel as follows: Stop 1 . At perforations.. i n a well containing a packer.” Periodic sounding should be taken under satisfactory operating conditions so that they can be used in comparison with future soundings.`.. thus acting as a heat transfer unit. On the same diagram indicate the depth of the valve stations. Timed duration of stops.`. 7-10 shows a typical acoustic survey of a gas lift well. Fig. stops if using a 6 hr. and interpretation of the charts produced. 7-12 . The sound impulses decrease with depth but clearly show all the protruding surfaces on the tubing string. 3 min.A P I TITLE+VT-h 94 0732290 0 5 3 2 9 2 4 714 91 Analysis and Regulation of Continuous Flow Gas Lift c. permitting the opening of an upper valve. . 7-11 . The rebound reflects a duplicate of the first recording but to a diminished degree. as the formation fluid entered the well. check valves. by using a gas heater ahead of the choke. or by building a heat exchanger around the choke. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. This can be rectified using a dehydraby tor in the gas system. such as the collars and gas lift valves. 5 . 7-9 shows the plotting of a typical pressure and temperature survey and easily identifies the operating valve or the depth of injection.tubing flow well CAUTION: THIS SYSTEM WILL WORK ONLY WHEN THE REGULATOR CAN BE SET HIGER THAN OPERATING INJECTION GAS PRESSURE (gas pressure in casing Fig. From bottom mandrel to perforations as required. The fluid level in a closed or semiclosed installation will represent the deepest point to which the well has been unloaded but may not represent the point of operation at the present time. The choking may be accomplished by the use of an insert or adjustable type choke or metering valve.25‘ below d. the pressure in the annulus at the fluid level would be equal to the pressure in the tubing (this is often referred to as the “point of balance”). the formation gas supplemented the injection gas.``. This can be used i n most cases where the system pressure is reasonably stable.

it is the component of the system that the operator uses to make a system efficient. Some of the deeper oil fields are planned for reservoir pressure maintenance before the field is completely drilled. The principles given here apply to both continuous flow discussed in this chapter. The combination of the two permits a constant gas volume to be injected into the well. Tying the gas lift system design to reservoir performance allows efficient production at higher flowing bottomhole pressures as high as 2300 psi. itwill be assumed that a two-pen pressure recorded for recording both casing and tubing pressures is on the well and that a meter run for measuring lift gas is at each well.````. .-`-`. The automatic control method offers the greatest --`````.```. 7-14. Controls Manual These controls are least efficient because the they require manual changes in adjustment when any system parameter changes. and because their durationof efficiency is only as long as all systems parameters are constant. 7-12 shows a wellhead installation that is recommended for most types of continuous flow gas lift valves where there is a fluctuating gas system pressure. Therefore. 7-13 . In all cases.. but progress with this method is moving slowly.. It is this component of the gas lift system with which the operator has direct and daily contact.`. tubing flow well WELL INJECTION GAS PRESSURE FOR CONTINUOUS FLOW SYSTEMS For many years it was a general rule that continuous flow gas lift needed a well injection gas pressure of 100 psi/lOOO ft.`. Today.``. the methods that are most commonly used today will be discussed first.. ELEMENT Fig. GETTING THE MOST OIL WITH THE AVAILABLE GASLIFT The efficientdistribution of circulatedgas to each well on gas lift is of primary concern to operating personnel. of lift.. Fig. The pressure element on the gas control valve is set to inject gas when the production pressure drops below its normal flowing pressure. and intermittent lift which will be discussed in the following chapters.. It is recommended that a choke be used with the gas control valve to prevent surging of the well gas pressure.`--- promiseforefficiency. This is generally used on wells that have a tendency to flow.. This led operators in many fields to select an injection gas system of less than 1000 psig. The regulator is set to operate at a pressure higher than the injection gas pressure in the casing downstream of the choke control.`. So. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. The methods generally used are manual and semi-automatic control. A few companies have implemented automatic controls. PRESS. Manual controls are detailed in Fig.`. these pressures are considered low for gas lift purposes. the approach to design and selection of the injection gas pressure is more sophisticated. 7-13 illustrates a production pressure control installation. The detailsof this componentwill be discussed as related to the method of control exercised by operating personnel... Also. It is related specifically to the highest expected flowing bottomhole pressure in the field.Production pressure control of the injection gas. The choke is installed in the gas line downstream from the regulator. This approach led to higher pressure systems of 1440 psig (ANSI Series 600) and higher. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.A P I TITLExVT-6 92 qV m 0732290 0532925 650 Gas Lift W Fig. Gas lift valves are easily adaptable to 1400 psi well gas pressures and several vendors have valves for 2000 psi and higher gas systems.

```. Pcrstays constant becauseit is partially controlled by the gas lift valves. Optimizing Gas Lift Systems The gas controls discussed previously have been improved to the point that they remain efficient until a defined loss in injection gas pressure (P. Each time a well is tested the following data are available: BOPD .. Efficiency is maintained with a limited (and defined) decline in P.A P I TITLE*VT-b 9Y 0732290 0532qE‘b 597 93 Analysis and Regulation of Continuous Flow Gas Lift A gas injection choke is commonly used for continuous flow and sometimes for intermittent lift. 7-15).. the operatingpersonnelmust establish a priority system defining which wells get circulated gas when there is a shortage of circulated gas volume. then another improvement in system efficiency is accomplished.. 7-14 . The well that has the lowest IGOR has top priority for circulated gas.`. calculate IGOR (Rgoi=ig/qo). 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. increases. if operating personnel can reduce or eliminate the occurrence of a degrading P.``. This provides a constant upstream pressure to each and eliminates the inefficiencies caused by increases in upstream pressure. SCF/D After the test. 1. An increase in Pgwill not be harmful.. The choke controls the rate of circulated gas to the well and does a good job C only as long as P.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Semi-Automatic Controls The manual surface controls may be improved by installing a pressure reducing regulator between the control and the high pressure gas source (Fig.barrels of water/day TGAS ..) is reached. the semi-automatic controls preserve efficient gas control as long as the injection gas pressure (Pg) remains constant or increases.-`-`. c Fig..`.`.. Establish Priority System Toaccomplishthis. Every effort should be made to circulate the required gas tothis well as long as any gas is available. Therefore.total gas from test separator.`.Pressure reducing regulator and choke --`````.lift gas circulated to the well. Chokes in intermittent lift wells are usually used only when pilot or production operated valves are employed. But if P.barrels of oil/day (qo) BWPD . standard cubic feet per day (SCF/D) IGAS . The best basisfor a priority system is the circulated gas-oil ratio (or the injected gas-oil ratio.Manually adjustable or positive choke pressure reducing regulator / Choke Fig. SCF/D (ig) FGAS .formation gas produced. inefficiency is introduced because the choke will pass more gas than needed. The gas rate to the well is a functionof Pg2. This controlcomponent may be used for continuous flow and some intermittent lift wells (if the intermitting valves will operate properly with choke control and have correct operating speed) and is a significant improvement over the “choke only” installation when injection gas system pressure varies. 7-15 .. If P.. r high pressure gas source Meter run 7 L Choke Pcf 1 ‘I . . but there is still no protection against an excessive decline in P. and P r remain fixed after the adjustment is made. IGOR) for eachwell in the system.`. the choke will reduce the volume of gas circulated and the volume of produced fluid will be reduced. decreases.````. For this purpose the following definition is acceptable: A gas lift system is optimized when the maximum possible barrels of oil are produced with the available circulated gas volume. Basically.

A P I TITLEtVT-b
94

94

m

0732290 0532927 423

m

Gas Lift By calculating an IGOR for each well from its latest test, the operator completes the priority list. The highest IGOR’s are now defined and theyshould be the first wells to lose circulated gas when the gas volume is reduced due to a loss in injection gas line pressure.

TABLE 7-2 MANUAL ACTION TO OPTIMIZE USE OF CIRCULATED LIFT GAS
Status of H.P. SBN Action

2. Implementing Priority System

Keeping the priority list up-to-date is a necessary part of the system. It is unlikely that a particular well moves from the lowest to the highest IGOR; but positions on the priority list will change as well conditions change. The status of the high pressure gas source can be recognized by the pressure. Table 7-1 illustrates logical conclusions.

Reduce or stop circulated gas to wells with highest IGOR’s until status returns to AN. Then restart gas to wells in ascending priority numbers until status returns to N. Stop circulated gas to wells with highest IGOR’s until status returns to N.

DBN

TABLE 7-1 STATUS OF HIGH PRESSURE GAS SOURCE
Pressure of H.P. Gas Source Normal
--`````,`,,``,,,````,`,```,,,-`-`,,`,,`,`,,`---

Logical Status of High Symbol Pressure Gas N All is well - circulated gas volume equals available gas volume Action More gas volume available than is being circulated to the wells SBN More gas volume is being circulated than is available, but all wells are producing More gas volume is being circulated than is available and some wells are not producing

Low pressure shut-in valves should be installed on the selected wells with high IGOR’s (20 to 30 percent of the wells) in order to semi-automatically optimize the circulated lift gas. Half of the selected wells should be equipped with low pressure shut-in valves that automatically reopen when the system pressure recovers. The otherhalf should be equipped with low pressure shut-in valves requiring manual reset to reopen.

TABLE 7-3 SEMI-AUTOMATIC ACTION TO OPTIMIZE USE OF CIRCULATED LIFT GAS
Status N All wells taking gas as adjusted by operating personnel Gas is stopped to high IGOR wells w/auto reopen. No gas will go to them until status recovers above SBN. These wells will then automatically start taking gas again. Gas has already been stopped to well w/auto reopen pilots. Gas will now be stopped to wells w/manual reset pilots. If this action allows status to recover above SBN. the wells w/auto reopen pilots will again get circulated gas. Operating personnel must personally reset the other wells before circulating gas will be restarted to them.

Above Normal

AN

Slightly Below Normal Drastically Below Normal

SBN

DBN

DBN

The symbols of Table 7-1 will be used to indicate the status of the higher pressure gas source. From the priority list select 20 to 30 percent of the wells that have the highest IGOR’s. With the above parameters defined, a priority system can be implemented manually or automatically, as described in Table 7-2 and Table 7-3.

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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Analysis and Regulation of Continuous Flow Gas Lift

95
in the most efficient manner auto-

Automatic Optimization of Injection Gas Use
Manual and semi-automatic optimization plans are keyed to trigger action only on a loss of pressure in the high pressure gas sources. Their inherent weakness is that they rely completely on the operating personnel to recognize changes in the well’s characteristics or malfunctions in the subsurface equipment. With today’s technology, microprocessors and computers may be used to monitor the well’s performance, evaluate the status of downhole equipment, measure the volume of high pressure gas available

and distribute lift gas matically.

A few companies have already used parts of this technology. An even fewer number have plans to implement completely automatic optimization systems. But automatic gas lift systems can be an economic field proven reality. Until then, operating personnel must do the best they can with manualandsemi-automaticsurfacegascontrols,and optimization plans, to get the most oil with the available lift gas.

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002, 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

--`````,`,,``,,,````,`,```,,,-`-`,,`,,`,`,,`---

A P I TITLE*VT-b

9q W 0732290 0532929

2Tb W

APPENDIX 7A EXAMPLES OF PRESSURE RECORDER CHARTS FROM CONTINUOUS FLOW WELLS

Operation: Continuousflow, casing choke control, tubingflow Type ofwell: High productivity, high bottomholepressure Trouble: None Recommendation: Leave well alone Type of gas lip valves: Injection pressure-operated Remarks: Good continuous flow operation. Well a high working fluidlevel. has Note the low back pressure effect. Well producing2,100 bbl offluid per day - 95 percent water - f r o m water drive reservoir, through 2% in. tubing. Chart 7-Al

Operation: Continuous flow, casing pressure control withregulator, tubing flow Type of well: High productivity, high bottomhole pressure Trouble: Inadequate production Recommendation: Reduce back pressure Type ofgas lijit valves: Pressure operated Remarks: Excessive back pressure may be due one or more of the following: to 1. Choke inflow line 2. Restriction inflow line (paraffin, snnd, etc.) 3. Flow line too small or too long 4. Separator pressure too high 5. Too many sharp bends inflow line 6. Highly emulsifiedfluid 7. Excessive input gas Chart 7-A2
--`````,`,,``,,,````,`,```,,,-`-`,,`,,`,`,,`---

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002, 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

was due to upper valve becoming operating valve. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295...```. the casingpressure increased to 48Opsig and a “kick” A can be noted the tubingpressure.. and thegas had beenon shortly beforethe chart was changed.casing choke control. tubing flow Type ofwell: Borderline production rate Trouble: Inadequate production Recommendations: A n intermittent and continuous flow productioncomparison Type ofgas lqt valves: Pressure operated Remarks: Compare intermittent to continuous flow to determine most efficient production rate Chart 7-A3 Operation: Continuous flow.``. high bottomhole pressure Trouble: None Recommendations: Leave well alone Type of gas l$t vulves: Injection pressure-operated Remarks: Thewell had been shut in overnight. continuous injection. There was agradualpressure rise to 468psig due at tofluid temperature increase affecting valve. tubing flow Type of well: High productivity.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. . on This an the the next morning the casing pressure had increased to 490 psig due to temperature effect.`. The turned casing pressure was at 46Opsig at the beginning 10:15 a.`..````..-`-`.m..`.`. Chart 7-A4 --`````.m.`..Examples of Pressure Recorder Charts from Continuous Flow Wells 97 Operation: Intermittent injection vs. t 2:45p..m.A t I0:OO a.

09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. high bottomhole pressure Trouble: Choke ongas linefroze Recommendations: A gas heater might be installed ahead of the choke.`.. casing choke control.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.``. high bottomhole pressure Trouble: None.-`-`. or the well might be placed on intermittent injection Type of gas l f t valves: Pressure operated Chart 7-AS Operation: Continuousflow. nogas is being injected Chart 7-A6 --`````..A P I TITLE+VT-b 98 94 m 0732290 0532933 954 m Gas Lift Operation: Continuous flow.```. well isflowing Recommendations: h a v e well alone Type of gas lìjt valves: Pressure operated Remarks: Well is flowing.. a jacket might welded around the choke or be to permit the hot flowline fluids to pass over it.....````.`. .. tubing flow Type of well: Highproductivity.`. tubingflow Type of well: Highproductivity.`.

`.`. but loads up with water periodically Recommendation: Operating satisfactorily Remarks: The tubing control element is set to inject gas into the well when the pressure decreases to 160 psig. Flow immediately started but the pressure declined to 210 psig at the peak of U-tube.casing choke control. tubing flow Type of well: High productivity.`--- Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. .`...````. It can be noted by therise in casing pressure opposite the drop in tubing pressure Chart 7-A8 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. thenfell off andfinally stabilized at 285 psig. tubing control.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295..`.``..-`-`.b 94 m 0732290 0532932 8 9 0 m 99 Example of Pressures Recorder Charts from Continuous Flow Wells Operation: Continuous flow. high bottomholepressure Trouble: Well is flowing... tubing flow Type of well: High productivity. A s the gas cleared through the gas lift valve the tubing f pressure increased to a maximum o 345 psig. Chart 7-A7 Operation: Continuous flow.```.A P IT I T L E + V T ... high bottomholepressure Trouble: Well was closed in to repairflowline Recommendation: None Type of gas lyt valves: Pressure operated Remarks: When the master valve was opened the tubing pressure was 250 psig.

.`. tubing flow Type of well: High productivity. it was noted that the well hadproduced its monthly allowable. --`````.```..-`-`..`--- .Operation: Continuousflow..`.````. or test against same high back pressure for accurate flow test Remarks: It would be impossible to have an accurate production test on the well under the above conditions Chart 7-A9 Operation: Continuous flow. casing choke control.``. tubing flow Type of well: Highproductivity. Chart 7-AIO Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. This can hurt some oil wells. high bottomhole pressure Trouble: Well is closed in Recommendations: Check to see why it is closed in Type of gas lijìt valves: Pressure operated Remarks: On checking... It is better to cut the daily production and produce the well constantly..`. casing choke control. and had been closed in. high bottomhole pressure Trouble: Well is being tested in test separator Recommendation: Remove high normal back pressure. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.`..

`.````.”which could caused by erratic valve operation to be or afluctuating system pressure. .Unloading continuous flow well --`````... well is “heading” Recommendation: Check to see if system gas pressure fluctuates Type ofgas lift valves: Pressure operated Remarks: Reasonably good operation. Well has a tendency “head... high bottomhole pressure Trouble: Not serious.-`-`.`.`. When thegas wasfirst turn line of on.casing choke control. When the liquid as volume displaced in the annulus stabilized thegas volume of the to rate injection gas. The wellfinally stabilized on the 4thvalve.`.A surge in tubingpressure i noted as each valve is was s uncovered. an immediate surge offluid returned from the tubing the well was completely full salt water.```... tubing flow Type of well: High productivity. the tubing pressure remained at 50 psig until the top valve uncovered and gas entered the tubing..`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..`.``. Chart 7-Al2 .Example of Pressures Recorder Charts from Continuous Flow Wells 101 Operation: Continuous flow. Chart 7-Al I A choke was used on thegas to control thegas volume into the casing-tubing annulus. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

it will just bubble up through the liquid without lifting any liquid to the surface. This increases the pressure in the annugas lus until this pressure and the liquid pressure in the tubing are sufficient to open the operating valve. the “tail gas” behind the slug has bled off.`. All gas lift valves are closed. When a well demands gas. minimum liquid rates for each conduit size that be lifted efficientlywith can continuous flow.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. ( 2 ) The operating valve should be the bottom valve and should be located just above the packer. the cyclic high instantaneous injection gas demand rate from the injection line is hard on the injection gas system. Whileit is normally in associated with low volume producers.-`-`.API TITLExVT-6 102 94 m 0732290 0532935 5TT m Gas Lift CHAPTER 8 INTERMITTENT FLOW GAS LIFT INTRODUCTION Continuous flow gas lift normally is more efficient than intermittent flow gas lift and. however. the bubble As expands. the flowline shouldbelarge in diameter and short in length. there may be a broad range of lower production rateswhere the two types of gas lift are about equal. then intermittent lift should be considered. Usually intermittent lift is conducted in 2 3 / ~tubing. large-ported valves that tend to “snap” open rather than throttle open are recommended for the operating valve. formation liquids accumulate and rise in the tubing..`.. Intermittent gas lift with the more commonly used gas pressure operated valves requires periods of high instantaneous gas injection rates separated by periods of no gas injection. Small diameter.. This creates problems at the compression station since compressors are not well suited to a “flow-no-flow” set of conditions. There are.`. the slug has moved down the flowline to the separator. long flowlines are very detrimental to intermittent lift installationsbecause they cause high wellhead pressures. . the intermitter or controller on the gas line at the surface opens and injects into the tubinggas casing annulus. Several things are apparent from this explanation.````. With time cycle control. --`````. Minimum liquid rate usually occurs at “ about 100 to 150 BLPD in 2 3 / ~tubing.. In (C). In such a case. Because of this problem. OPERATING SEQUENCE The operating sequence or cycle after unloading of an intermittent lift installation using gas pressure operated valves is shown in Fig. Gas measurement is also very difficult because of the cyclic flow. In (A). and formation liquids are again accumulating in the tubing.```. the liquid slug has reached the surface at which time the operating valve should close.``. Intermittent lift is a displacement process. Usually intermittent lift wells require more attention than continuous flow wells to keep them producing at the maximum efficient rate. Wells with high productivity indices (PI) and low bottomhole pressure or wells with low PI’S requiring low flowing bottomhole pressures are most suited to this type of lift. However..High pressure gas is injected into the liquid column on a cyclicor intermittent basis creating a gas bubble which expands pushing the liquid above it to the surface a slug. Consequently. If not. there are “ ” many successful installations using 2 7 / ~and 3’/2“ tubing. Intermittent lift should achieve lower average flowing bottomhole pressures than can be obtained with continuous flow in wells producing at low flow rates and at low flowing bottomhole pressures. although such a rate couldprobably havebeenliftedmoreefficiently with continuous flow. 8-l . the restof the All valves remain closed because the gas pressure alone is not sufficient to open the valves. This way the lowest possible flowing bottomhole pressure can be achieved. and reduce the amount of gas required to lift the liquid slug to the surface.. the volumetric capacity of the injection system should be large so it can act as an accumulator to help smooth out the flow surges. it pushes the liquid above it to the surface. The intermitter or controller has already closed. (3) The back pressure atthe surface should be as low as possible to minimize fallback. Gas is injected very rapidly into the liquid column creating a gas bubble.. however.`. In (D).`. therefore. therewould be little justification for change unless there were other contributing factors. 200 to 300 BLPD in 27/~“ tubing and 300 to 400 in 3‘/2’’ tubing. should be used whenever possible. maximize the initial starting slug.. (1) The gas should be injected rapidly. intermittent lifthas successfully lifted wells at rates excess of 500 barrels of in liquid per day (blpd). the pressure in the injection system is pulled down. Ideally. This problem can sometimes be reduced by decreasing the maximum injection gas cycle frequency in high PI wells. When the minimum rate is reached. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.At a predetermined time (B).

`.``. lift the slug to the surface. Since pressure acts downward as well as upward the standing valve prevents the high pressure gas from forcing liquids back into the formation on each cycle. it can cause problems if the well produces sand... An open installation has neither a packer nor a standing valve. and bleed off the tail gas... 8-1 . (4) wellhead back pressure. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. and (8) other unusual well conditions such as emulsions. (3) injection gas pressure.```. . (7) bottomhole pressure build-up characteristics. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.`. The closed installation is recommended for intermittent lift. ( 5 ) gas passing ability of the gas lift valve. Astanding valve is normally recom- The primary factors affecting the maximum producing rate in intermittent lift are (1) tubing size.`. Experience has shown it takes about 3 minutes per 1000 feet of lift to inject the gas.Intermittent lift cycle of operation f o r conventional closed intermittent installation TYPES OF INSTALLATIONS mended.. (6) gas breakthrough and fall back.`.`--- [A) Immediotcly Before Gar Injection [C) Injection Cos Entering Tubing Through Volve After Controller Closed [D) After Gor Injection Fig. 8-1 show a closed installation. (2) depth of lift.. A closed installation uses a packer and a standing valve below the bottom gas lift valve. The other two types of installations (open and semiclosed) will allow the high pressure gas to act on the formation thereby decreasing the efficiency of the lift.-`-`. The sand can collect on top of the standing valve making it difficult if not impossible to pull. This time will vary from Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. FACTORS AFFECTING PRODUCING RATE Maximum Rate The maximum rate at which an intermittent lift well can be produced is limited by the maximum number of times the well can be cycled in a 24-hour period.I API TITLErVT-b94 Gas Flow m 0732290 0532736 436 m 103 Lift Intermittent Volve Closed Valve Closed Volve Closed Volve Closed Valve Closed V o l v e Closed Opereling Volve Open Opcroting Volve Open The illustrations in Fig. however.`. An open installation without a packer is not recommended for intermittent lift.. A semi-closed installation has a packer but not a standing valve. open the operating valve.````.

Fallback can be defined as the difference between the starting slug and the produced slug. A minimum slug velocity of 1000 feet perminute is recommended to minimize gas break-through.. the gas has a tendencyto bubble up through the liquid allowing some of the liquid to drop back down. 8-2.``.A P I TITLE*VT-b 104 94 m 0732290 0532937 372 m Gas Lift recommended for the operating valve for intermittentflow gas lift. 2. to rise up through the liquidwithout providing much lifting action. Development of the Gas Bubble through the Christmas tree should be streamlined as much If the operating valve has a small port or tends to throttle as possible.-`-`. 3. large-ported. then through another 90" ell or choke tee.`. This is shown in Fig. produced slug...then Gas break-through and fallback are affected by three through at least one more and probably two or more 90" things. Some of this liquid wets the walls of the tubing and runs back down. 8-3. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. Velocity of the Slug installation to installationbut the time of 3 minutes per 1000 feet of lift is a good rule to use for estimating maximum production rate and minimum cycle time. --`````.Illustrations of starting slug.`.. gas will enter slowly and tend flowline back to the ground as shown in Fig. Gas should enter the tubing quicklyto form the gas For estimating purposes.1 I OPERATINGVALVE \ I *. The flow pattern 1.`. the flow could be out the top of the tree and then through a sweeping pipe bend to bring the open rather than snap open. snap-acting gas lift valves are the starting slug per 1000 feet of lift.PRODUCED SLUG Fig. For example. Restrictions at the Wellhead The third factor affecting fallback is restrictions at the wellhead. The usual flow path through the Christmas tree into the flowline is rather tortuous. the longer the gas has to break through the liquid. Fallback In intermittent lift. and fallback Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.```.the gas alone does sweep all of the not liquid out of the tubing from the operating valve the surto face.. adjusted intermittent lift well will be about 5 to 7 percent of Consequently.`... the development of the gas bubble.`--- . first through a to the tee wing valve. 8-2 . . slug allowing more liquid to fall back. OPERATING VALVE AJST AFTER CLOSING FALLBACK = STARTMG SLUG . Some liquid always falls back. Also... All this slows down the velocity of the liquid slug. and restrictions at the wellhead. STARTING LIQUID SLUG AND FALLBACK TO SEPARATOR TO SEPARATOR INJECTION GAS INJECTION GAS L STARTING SLUG PRODUCED SLUG t - FALLBACK '' ". The slower the slug moves up the tubing. the upward ells before reaching the flowline. the fallback on a properly bubble and to accelerate the liquid slug up the tubing.````.

`.`--- Example Design Using Fallback Method: The following well data illustrates the fallback design: method Depth = 5000 feet System gas pressure = 700 psig (0. (valve closing pressure) of the valve can be calculated. for themost efficient operation. and liquid feed-in to predict the minimum tubing pressure obtainable.`. This method normally uses the same surface closingpressure for all valves except the Operating valve which usually has a lower surface closing pressure.S. the plunger would be inoperative if one of the upper valves turned out to be the operating valve. the plunger falls back to the bumper spring to start another trip. This figure was developed from many flowing pressure surveys on many intermittent lift wells. Generally 0.``. Tubing size = Z3/8-in.D. Thus knowing the gas pressure at the valve. minimizing gas break-through. is 50 to 90 psi less than the gas pressure at the valve depending on the valve characteristics.Streamlined wellhead for intermittent installation Fallback can be reduced to an absolute minimum by using a plunger with the installation...-`-`. the tubing pressure can be calculated when the valve opens. In such a system. After each slug surfaces. at the instance the valve opens. a fallback gradient method and a percent load method. The surface closing pressure of the unloading valves normally should be 100 psi less than the system gas pressure. The intermittent lift spacing factor (unloading gradient) is determined from Fig. It also wipes the liquid from the tubing wall reducing the amount left to fall back.3 .. Casing size = 5'h-in. However. If an upper valve opens. Therefore. Fallback Method The fallback gradient method uses an average gradient of the tail gas. the installation must be designed so that none of the upper valves will open while operating from the bottom valve. liquid fallback. irregular producing ratesin intermittent lift wells.D. Most of them fall into two basic categories.`.API TITLE*VT-b qq 07322qO 0532938 2 0 7 m 105 Intermittent Flow Gas Lift Use of Plungers in Intermittent Lift Systems Fig. fallback fluid transfer from the casing to the tubing and feed-in after drawdown is achieved. The spacing factor accounts for the increase presin sure with depth of the gas in the tubing above the liquid level. Also for intermittent lift design purposes.465 psi/ft. Therefore. it may blow the plunger back down preventing proper operation of the installation.. the P. However. A tubing stop and bumper spring are installed just above the bottom or operating valve. Gulf Coast which is approximately the temperature that would be measured about 50 feet below the ground level. O.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. specially designed plungers for wells with sidepocket mandrels are available. see the use of plungers in gas lift operations in Chapter 10.`. the surface temperature usually is assumed to be 74°F in the U.. O. In 1963 White et al36 determined that the tubing pressure at the operating valve should be 59 percent of the gas pressure at the operating valve..selecting the surface closing pressure 100 psi less than the surface injection pressure will be on the safe side and account for fluctuations in gas pressure.. 8-4. Because of the normally low. For additional information on plungers.```. Some conventional plunger equipment should not be used with wireline or side pocket mandrels. . surface temperatures vary by region. DESIGN OF INTERMITTENT LIFT INSTALLATIONS There are many methods of designing intermittent lift installations. After the gas pressure and the production (tubing) pressure at the valve are known.`. and the correct temperature for the region should be used. --`````. The plunger acts as an interface or piston between the gas and the liquid. the temperature gradient for design purposes is assumed to be geothermal.65 gravity) Surface tubing pressure = 65 psig Static bottomhole pressure = 775 psig Bottomhole temperature = 150°F Producing rate = 100 BLPD Kill fluid gradient = 0. 8 . This will show that the P. This average gradient or intermittent spacing factor (SF) is dependent on the tubing size and anticipated production rate. The commonly used value is 60 percent.04 psi per foot of depth is the minimum that should be used for unloading..````.. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.

``. 8-4 .. Extend this gradient of 0.Intermittent lift spacing factor --`````.. 8-5. 3.. of the well 6. 1 .`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.```. This line and the one plotted in step 6 are almost parallel. 'M in.. pressure and temperature scales as shown in Fig.04 psi/ft). Subtract 100 psi from the surface injection pressure and plot this as the surface closing pressure of the unloading valves (550 psig). seat.). etc. The following is a step-by-step procedure. 7.`.-`-`. O..04 psi/ft from the wellhead of the well 9. tubing size.`. (In this example it is 0. and draw a straight line between the two points. Preparesheet a 5. Extend the pressure to the bottom accounting for the gas column weight (610 psig at 5000 ft. N2 charged.. Explanation of Graphical Solution Fallback Using Method: A graphicalsolution is theeasiest way to solve the problem./& = 0.A.. Determine the appropriate spacing factor (unloading gradient) for the particular well from Fig. Fig. ' 2. 4. .`.A P I TITLE*VT-b 106 94 m 0732290 Gas Lift 0532939 145 / Gas lift valve = l'/*-in. Plot the surface gas injection pressure. 1. 8. A. Plot the wellhead pressure (65 psig) at zero depth (surface). 8-4.`. Extend this pressure to the bottom accounting for the gas column weight (720 psig at 5000 ft. Use pressure 50 psi less than system pressure (650 psig).799 pressure (65 psig) at the surface to the bottom of the well (265 psig at 5000 ft.).. This is a function of the anticipated production rate. of graph paper with depth. Plot 700 at the surface.201. 150°F at 5000 ft.````.).`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. but not quite./& = 0.D.

. 0. 16.841 Depth 1300 2300 3200 4100 4800 PVC Temp.8-5 shows the depths for the remaining valves. Determine the static gradient of the kill fluid.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. 15. PRESSURE - O 4 2 100 PSI0 6 80 8 70 120 110 90 TEMPERATURE 'F 100 130 150 - 140 C.)./& = Valve opening pressure in tester = Valve closing pressure = Temperature correction factor = Manufacturers specification for the valve.. line to locate the depth of the second valve (2300 ft. draw a 0..Example of graphical solution using fallback method --`````.. the equation is: P.)..A. 12.841 pvo 665 655 650 07 107 121 136 148 646 640 Uee 616 PSlG Fig.`.```.2 P.`.465 psi/ft gradient line to intersect the P. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. 11. The set pressure of a nitrogen charged valve is calculated by the following equation: Equation 8. "668 578 688 600 600 c.1 If the valve is spring loaded.`. 13.860 0. The final item is to calculate the set pressures of the valves.`. Extend a 0.Drawahorizontal line to theleft to the spacing factor line plotted in step 4. 14.API TITLErVT-6 94 m 0732290 0532940 967 m Intermittent Flow Gas Lift 10.. From the intersection of the horizontal line and the spacing factor line.465 psi/ft. These are the PVC's of each valve.038 0. line. CT 1 .Fig.. Determine the temperature at each valve depth...Ap/Ab Equation 8.Continuethisprocedureto total depth. P. .. This intersection is the depth of the top valve (1 300 ft. = 0. Read the pressures at the intersections of the horizontal lines and the P.`. For this example it is 0. 8-5 .884 0.465 psi/ft gradient linefrom the wellhead pressure (65 psig) to intersect the gas pressure at depth line plotted in step 6 ..008 0.-`-`..``. 107 17.````. = Where: PC V I ..

``.`.465 psi/ft gradient line from the wellhead lift.API TITLE*VT-6 108 94 m 0732290 0532743 B T 3 m Lift 2.839 720 716 710 706 706 700 676 401 406 411 416 421 426 432 6(10 677 686 673 702 716 710 614 622 630 637 646 867 661 91 100 110 120 120 139 149 Use 670 PSKi Fig. Depth 1300 1000 2600 3100 3700 4360 4060 "" P P Ç pvo .0. 8-6 . At the surface plot 60 percent of th. PRESSURE O --`````.. Percent Load Method The other general method is commonly called the percent load method. Extend a 0.87 1 0. List the results as shown in Fig. Extend this pressure to the bottom of the well accounting for the gas column weight (720 psig at 5000 ft.````. This is calledflagging the bottom valve and is done so that it can be detected on a 2-pen pressure chart. pressure (65 psig) at the surface tothe gas pressureat Explanation of graphical solution using percent load depth line to locate the top valve (1300 ft.Plotwellheadpressure (surface). . sure at the valve at the instant the valve opens for efficient 7.).e injection gas pressure (0. This then becomes the basisof this method.6 x 650 = 390 psig at surface).).) cent load line.886 0. 18. Prepare the graph paper as shown in Fig. 19. 1.```..Graphical solution using the percent load method Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.936 0.6 x 20 = 432 psig at 5000 valve should be approximately 60 percent of the gas presft. At the bottom of the well.. 8-5.`--- ... 4. Draw a horizontal lineto the left to intersect theper(Use the same well data given for fallback design. Plot the surface gas injection pressure (650 psig). method follows: 8.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`.`.)..856 0.903 0.100 PSlG TEMPERATURE .-`-`. Decrease the set pressure of bottom valve 25 to 30 the psi.`. Also consider using a large ported pilot valve on bottom.. 5 . 8-6.`. plot 60 percent of the gas determined that the production pressure at the operating pressure at the bottom (0.92 1 0. As mentioned earlier. ( 6 5 psig) at zero depth 3. the White et al paper 6.O F 1 401 PSlG I - W k!2 O O 408 PSlG : I 41 1 PSlG 2 t3 W n 416 PSI0 421 PSlG 4 428 PSlG S 432 PSI0 Pbt P9 Temp.

The gas pressure above the liquid increases and closes thebleed valve.A P I TITLE+VT-6 94 m 0732290 0532942 Intermittent Flow Gas Lift 73T m 109 9. another Still procedure is a combination of the fallback and percent methods. At this time Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`--- Notice that the spacing between valves increases with depth and seven valves are required whereas the fallback method required five valves. Probably the most commonly used procedure is called the 40 . Variations of Percent Method Load Many variations of the percent load method have been devised to reduce the number of valves required.. 13. Usually this system is used in wells that have good PI'S but very low bottomhole pressures.(Ap The foregoing examples of intermittent lift design are intended for use with injection pressure operated gas lift valves. = Pressure in bellows at tempera- ture at valve depth. CHAMBERS Chambers are a special type of intermittent lift installation. assuming a load fluid with a staticgradient of 0. the time cycle controlat the surface opens injecting gas into the tubing-casing annulus. Spacing of the valves is determined by the point of balance between the differential pressure between the gas pressure and the production pressure on one hand and pressure caused by the static gradient on the load fluid on the other. The set pressure for nitrogen charged valves is calculated by the equations: ~~~~~i~~ 8..465 psi/ft or 540feet.```. Decrease the set pressure of the bottom valve 25 to 30 psig to be able to detect it on a two-pen pressure chart. to the bottom of the well. the liquid in the annulus is pushed down through the perforated sub just above the bottom packer and up the tubing. The gas then follows the liquid into thetubing forcing the liquid to the surface.). Fig. Consequently.`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. lift Normally. In this method. psig C T PP S = Temperature correction factor = Spring pressure effect... .6 --`````. there is no control device on the injection gas line other than a choke and full line pressure is used. when production pressure operated gas lift valves are used i n intermittent lift installations.````.A /Ab) + Pp(Ap/Ab) g p P"" = ( P d (cf) /Ab)(Ap 1For a spring loaded valve the Psp = P (1 -Ap g /Ab) P".`. Fig.-`-`. load Valves are spaced from the surface usingthe fallback method until drawdown is achieved.. psig 14.5 Equation 8. As the gas pressure continues to increase. 12. psig = Gas pressure..465 psi/ft gradient line to intersect the gas pressure at depth line to locate the depth of the second valve (1900 ft. The standing valve prevents the liquids from being forced back into the formation. Continue the procedure Fig. This close spacing resultsin using more valves in an installation than would be required with injection pressure operated valves. spacing between valves decreases with depth and fewer valves are required. Production Pressure Operated Lift Gas Valves + Pp /Ab) (Ap P. This modification uses 40 percent of the gas pressure at the surface and 60 percent of the gas pressure at the bottom of the well. Liquids enter through the standing valve and fill the tubing and annulus. 11. 8-8 shows the more common two-packer chamber. From this intersection draw a 0. the reservoir pressure of such wells will not support a long column of liquid.. the spacing between the valves will be 250 psi divided by 0.`. = Equation8. Where: Pbt P P pd p 1 -Ap/Ab AP /Ab P".465 psi/ft and a 250psi differential between production pressure and gas pressure. 10. 8-7 shows an insert or"bottle" chamber. At each valve depth read the gas Pressures (pg) on the gas Pressure at depth line and the Production PresSures (PP) on thePercentloadlineateachvalve depth.4 equations are: Equation 8. psig = Production pressure at valve depth = Valve manufacturers specification = Valve manufacturers specification = Valve opening pressure in tester at 60"F. S 1/Ab) . Production pressure operated gas lift valves have also been used in many intermittent gas installations. For example. Then the 60 percent load method is used from there to the bottom of the well.`.``. The bleed valve is open to vent the gas in the annulus above the liquid tothe tubing to prevent gas locking the annular portion of the chamber. At a predetermined time. The chamber valve then opens and injects gas into the annulus below the top packer. Determine the temperature ateach valve depth.`..60 percent method. The valves are set to open when the production pressure is within 150 psi to 300psi of the gas pressure at the same depth.3 Pbt = P (1 . 8-6 shows the depths of the remaining valves.

. UNLOADING GAS BOTTOM UNLOADING GAS L I F T VALVES BOTTOMUNLOADING GAS LIFT VALVE HANGER NIPPLE FOR DIP TUBE OPERATINGCHAMBER GAS LIFT VALVE OPERATING CHAMBER GAS LIFT VALVE Standing valve modified f a r STANDINGVALVE (0) Fig.10 Rct Where: Rct + - v. it will be difficult if not impossible to U-tube the liquid out the chamber into the of tubing. The bottom unloading valve must be only one joint of tubing above the chamber valve otherwise the installation may not work. H = Hyd/gs the chamber valve closes. hole in a collar.11 Design of A Gas Lift Chamber Installation The length of the chamber is based on equating the wellhead pressure ( P w h ) plus the hydrostatic head (Hyd) of the liquid in the tubing above the chamber just as the chamber empties to 60 percent of the gas pressure (Pg) at the chamber valve...API TITLEbVT-b 9 4 m 0732290 0532943 b7b W 110 --`````. Some chamber valves have the bleed feature built into them eliminating the need for a separate bleed valve.`..8 = 0..``.````. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.```.`. the tail gas bleeds off.Ratio of Annular Volume to Tubing Volume Volume of Annulus Volume of Tubing Equation 8. It is always better to have a chamber that is too short than to have one that is too long. Equation 8..`.7 Equation 8. The bleed valve can be either a differential gas valve lift or set at50 to 100 psi a ‘kin. the installation is a standard intermittent lift installation.-`-`.`.H y d = 0.60 (PP)- Pwh If the chamber is too long. Above the chamber. Equation 8..Insert chamber installation Fig.60 (PB) Hyd . the bleed valve opens and liquid again enters through the standing valve. 8-8 . 8-7 . the chamber length and the set pressure of the chamber valve. Two items must be calculated for a chamber. P w h i.`. .Two-Packer chamber installation Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..9 The chamber length (CL) is determined by: CL = Rct + 1.0 Vt H Equation 8.`--- Gas Lift The height (H) of the liquid column in the tubing is the hydrostatic pressure (Hfl) divided by the static gradient of the well fluids (gs)..

6 1 . The standing valve should have a hold-down to prevent it from being blown out of its seating nipple by the high differential across it immediately after the slug surfaces.) If the chamber valve.(AdAt.. then it will not be necessary to pull the well to change them. .`.. There is no liquid head above the chamber valve.. ( 1 .`--- Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. vent valve and standing valve are wireline retrievable.`..```..+ P. The equations for calculating the set pressure of nitrogen charged valve are: For a spring loaded valve: PS.``. = PS. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````.&/Ab) + P.````. The only production pressure available to assist the injection gas pressure in opening the chamber valve is the wellhead pressure.`.API T I T L E x V T .`.`. (Ap/&) Where: Equation 8... 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Equation 8..) Where: P.5 P".-`-`. = P w h (approx.6 9 4 0732290 0532944 502 m 111 Intermittent Flow Gas Lift Usually the chamber valve is a pilot operated valve.

9-1) on the injection gas lineat desired set intervals is probably still the most widely used type of surface control.```. the old mechanical time cycle pilot which automatically actuates a motor valve (Fig. --`````./min. These electronic timers are replacing many clock driven pilots. a pressure reducing regulator. etc..Time cycle controller for intermittent gas lift duration of gas injection is changed by certain adjustments installation in the time cycle control..````.`.. etc. and ADJUSTMENT FOR long life batteries are now available for controlling the injection gas cycle. pushing back timing clips. CONTROL OF THE INJECTION GAS The TimeCycle Controller Time cycle control of the injection gas is applicable for most intermittent installationsand is recommended particularly for extremely high capacity and very low capacity wells. ~ Slug velocity is agood indication of the overall operation and proper adjustment of the injection gas volume. Pressure recorded and orifice meter charts from numerous intermittent installations are illustrated in this chapter. . time cycle and choke control. 4-hour. wellhead chokes. etc. on a timing wheel. procedures are offered to assure unloading an intermittent installation without damage to the gas lift equipment. The controlof the injection gas for intermittent instalan lation can be divided into two main categories.`. The time cycle operated controller is the most widely used means of injection gas control for intermittent lift installations..``. and other piecesof equipment areonly variations of the two categories. For most installations this velocity should be 800 to 1200 ft.-`-`..`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. cycle frequency. and there is less chance of a controllernot closing due to clock stoppage. to assure maximum liquid recovery per cycle. 9-1 .. This chapter describes different equipment applications and techniques for injection gas control. The time cycle control with high pressure cutoff. viz. 9-1).`. rotation. Completely automatic time cycle controls containing microprocessors.. REGULATING AND ANALYZING INTERMITTENT FLOW GAS LIFT INSTALLATIONS INTRODUCTION The differencebetween efficient and inefficient operation of an intermittent flow gas lift installation depends largely uponthemeans employed to control the injection gas volume to the well. The cycle frequency may also be changed by using PRESSURE OPENING MOTOR VALVE different clocks such as 2-hour. In addition. choke control.A P I TITLE+VT-b 94 m 0732290 0532945 449 m CHAPTER 9 PROCEDURES FOR ADJUSTING.`. Recording of the casing and tubing pressures is recommended during unloading and for a daily reCO gas the -#rdof lift operation. It is flexible since the cycle frequency can be easily changed to meet various desired producing rates (Fig. Thenumber of gas injection cycles day is varied per by adding or eliminating timing pins. They improve accuracy for adjusting the duration and frequency of the injection gas cycle. Correct regulation of the injection gas volume per cycle. The Fig... depending upon its construcREVERSE ACTING tion. liquid crystal displays. but these refinements are necessary for some installations to assure the most efficient operation.. and other conditions suchas paraffin..`.. can appreciably affect the daily producing rate and gas requirements. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. It also assists the operator in determining the proper adjustment of the injection gas volume to the well. Increasing the injection gas volume does not always increase the daily production ratefrom an intermittent installation. However. Thetime cycle pilot usually consists of a timing wheel that is clock driven.

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. The injection gas line cannot be included as part of the high pressure storage unless the controller is at the well.API T I T L E * V T . Between these periods of gas injection. Assuming that the gas lift valves and annular capacity will permit this type of operation. Choke control is ideally suited forsmall rotative systems because the injection gas demand rate is constant. Central timers with several timing wheels operated by a common drive shaft have been used in some fields to stagger the period of gas injection. . 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. problems such as freezing. Electronic timers can eliminate the need for a central timer.``.. Such a system may require pilot operated gas lift valves in the wells. This lation.This slows the rate of increase in casing pressureand may result in a lower overall lift efficiency. In such a system.and well deliverability will hamper or prevent choke control. a dehydrationunit should be considered. Straight choke control of the injection gas is not recommended for very low productivity or extremely high capacity intermittent installations.6 9Y m 0732290 0532946 385 m Procedure for Adjusting. no gas is needed to lift the well. When installations will operate with choke controlof injection gas. choke control limitsthe maximum slug size and cycle frequency. or near the same time.`. For very low producing rates.```. A lengthy period of time is required for any appreciable volume of liquid to pass through a small choke with the pressure differentials encountered in most gas lift systems. Choke control requires a minimum of attention by field personnel since there is no timing device to wind or check. The central timer has a timing wheel for each intermittent installation the indiand vidual motor valve on the injection gas line is opened and closed by a solenoid valve which is actuated by its corresponding timing wheel.`. the required injection gasis delivered intothe casing through a small choke or metering valve in the injection gas line. liquids in the injection gas line. the valves must have the desired spread and operating characteristics needed for choke controlbased on the casing and tubing size.-`-`.`--- 113 are used.`. Smaller injection gas lines can be used and the surface equipment is less expensive than that required for time cycle control.. Location of Time Cycle Controller For more intermittent installations. and partially or completely bypassing the after-cooler. the choke size becomes too small for practical application. If gas pressure operated valves UNLOADING AN INTERMITTENT INSTALLATION The intermitting cycle is described in Chapter 8.. Pilot operated gas valves are lift the best type of gas pressure operated valves for choke control. section supplements the operationsdiscussed in that chapter by outlining procedures and considerations which are Recommended Practices Prior to Unloading important to the operators in order that damage to equipThe recommended practices prior to unloading intermitment may be eliminated and efficient unloading operations tent lift wells are the same as given in Chapter 7 for conassured. the high pressure system loses pressure and one or more wells may not receive a sufficient volume of injection gas for that cycle.high-rate injection gas removal from the system is eliminated. the controller should be located at the well rather than at the tank battery to assure the most efficient operations. Regulating and Analyzing Intermittent Flow Lift Installations In small rotative gas lift systems. These installations may have injection gas or production pressure operated valves. Increasing the choke size increases the cycle frequency..`. The accuracy of the quartz movement in an electronic timer allows precise staggering of the injection cycles for several wells... The numerous limitations of choke control account for the predominance of time cycle control. and for very high producing rates. If the injection gas is wet.````. both casing and injection line to the well must be filled in order to increase the casing pressure. The problem of freezing is apparent. time cycle control is undesirable becauseof the high instantaneous injection gas volume required from the high pressure system. Therefore. if several controllers open simultaneously. but the effect of liquid in the injection gas can be just as serious. Accurate measurement of the injection gasis no problem because of the constant demand of the wells. In some cases large ported single element valves have been successfully used. --`````.. The injection cycle frequency is varied by changing the choke size. Choke Controlof the InjectionGas For choke control of an intermittent installation. When the controller is at the tank battery. it is likely that the damage to these valves occurred during unloading. the gas supplied to the well is shut off during thistime.`. Other suggestions for alleviating freezing are. If gas lift valve seats leak in an intermittent instaltinuous flow wells.. installation of a heater or locating the chokes near the compressor.

will be more than enough gas while the well is operating from the upper valves. Use this relationship to determine the cycle frequency for a particular well. Use the same guidelines asfor a time cycle controller. Unloading Operations Using a time Cycle Operated Controller The time cycle operated controller on the injection gas line should not be adjusted to remain open during initial U-tubing. In other words.000 ft. this operation should not be hurried. Injection time should be adjusted to stop when the liquid slug clears the wellhead and the gas bubble first reaches the wellhead. Itmay be advisable to restrict injection gas into the the flowline during the first head..-`-`. The first injection gas head immediately after the top valve is uncovered can overload the surface facilities in some instances.. Unloading with Choke Control the Injection Gas of Not all intermittent installations can be unloaded or operated with choke control of the injection gas.000 standard cubic feet per day. The type of gas lift valve and the ratio of casing annulus capacity to tubing capacity must be suited for this type of operation. Cycle frequency should be basedon the expected or desired production from the well. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. for 100 barrels per day from 6. Since no reservoir fluid feed-in is possible during the U-tubing. Some installations are designed with upper gas lift valves having a smaller port than the lower valves to reduce the gas heads from the upper valves. 2. this condition cannot recur because the top valve will always open before a high pressure differential can exist across the valves below the fluid level.. No excessive pressure differential across the valves will occur during initial U-tubing when the casing pressure is increased slowly.000 or 100. No bottomhole pressure drawdown occurs during U-tubing operations because tubing presthe sure at total depth exceeds the static bottomhole pressure due to the pressure exerted by the liquid column in the tubing.`--- . they are starting points.`. adjust the gas rate the to well so that it is a function of the design or expected production rate from the well.`. After witnessing the initial U-tubing the operator may adjust the timer to continue the unloading operation. After 12-18 hours of reduced gas volume is circulated to the well. For example. Then increase the choke size so that the casing pressure increases 100 psi in 8-10 minutes. but will be about right as the well unloads to the bottom valve. l .```. Once the absolute casing pressure has reached a value 400 psi the of injection rate can be increased cause a 100 increase in to psi casing pressure in the same 8-10 minutetime interval.. More accurately stated the time cycle controller should be set to inject gas at a rate which will cause a50 psi increase in casing pressure in an 8-10 minute time interval. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Each lift cycle should deliver from oneto two barrels of fluid per inch of tubing diameter.`. This. set the injected lift gas rate to be * h of the 150. a pressure differential that is approximately equal to this line pressure will occur across each valve in the installation. Set the choke so that the casing pressure increase be about will 50 psi in about 8-10 minutes and continue at this rate until the casing pressure is about 400 psia. --`````. These guidelines are for unloading only. If the installation has a standing valve. particularlyif the port sizeof the top valve is large.``.`. If full line pressure is exertedon top of the fluid column in the casing. It should be adjusted for frequent but short duration of gas injection to permit a gradual increase in casing pressure..000 standard cubic feet per day. These important facts about protecting the lift valves gas and the surface facilities are reasons enough to conclude that this step should be done manually and should be personally observed by the operator.. injection gas pressure exerted on top of the liquid column in the casing causes fluid from the casing to U-tube into the tubing through open gas lift valves.6 114 94 0732290 0532947 211 Gas Lift m Initial U-Tubing Until the top valve is uncovered. After the top valve is uncovered.. The chokesize selected should be considerably smallerthan the port size of the gas lift valve to permit the injection pressure in the casing to decrease the valve closing presto sure after a valve has opened. After the top valve is uncovered. However. the valve will be closed. This second rate should be continued until the top valve is exposed to gas allowing the gas in the casing to flow into the tubing and upward into the flowline. one could expect to use 150. Damage to the valve seats can result from the high fluid velocity through the valves.duringtheunloadingoperations it is best not to exceed two or three cycles per hour for the first 12 to 24 hours. Maintain this choke setting until the top valve is uncovered to gas. For example. The well should be checked for improved adjustments the following day. in 2-inch tubing 12 cycles per day should produce from 24 to48 barrels of fluid perday.````. The casing pressure should be increased gradually to maintain a low jluid velocity through the open gas lijì valves. Therefore.API T I T L E * V T . of course.`.. For example. This may not work the well down to the bottom valve but it will unload safely and without damage to the gas lift valves. 20 second injection every 4 a or 5 minutes can be used until the top valve is subjected to gas and the first gas bubble enters the production tubing. adjust the gas to the full amount expected to be used for lifting the well’s production.

Cu FUBbl 72 48 36 24 20 30 40 60 56 56 63 85 175 186 174 170 3. Step 4 Reduce the duration of gas injection per cycle untilthe production rate decreases.800 1.. These two things work together to yield a lower injected gas liquid ratip (Rgli).`. increasing the injection gas pressure will decrease the production pressure required to open the valve. the 48 cpd used only 409 mcf/d for 186 BPD while the 72 cpd used 525 mcf/d for only 175 BPD. Note the big difference i n Rgl. whereas the increasein Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`. This establishes the proper injection gas cycle frequency.``. per cycle) represented the least amount of Rgli.. the controller is adjusted to inject amplegas volume with minimum line pressure. Finally. A time cycle operated controlleron the injection gas line can be adjustedasoutlined. proving again that more gas circulated to a well does not always produce more fluid.. The increased slug length at the instant the valve opens results in increased tubing pressure at valve depth. SELECTION OF CHOKE SIZE FOR CHOKE CONTROL OF INJECTION GAS gas pressure operated gas lift valve suited for choke control is opened by both injection gas pressure and production pressure.)¡).. There was considerable difference in the injection R. 94 m 0732290 0532948 L58 D 115 Regulating and Analyzing Intermittent Lift Flow Installations ADJUSTMENT OF TIME CYCLE OPERATED CONTROLLER After an installation is unloaded.````. Procedure for Determining Cycle Frequency The following procedure is recommended for determining the proper cycle frequency duration of gas injection and immediately after the installation is unloaded and anytime during the life of the well. then increase the duration of gas injection by 5 to 10 seconds for fluctuations in injection gas line pressure..300 A cyclefrequency of 48 cycles per day (30 min. of lift). The following tabulation (Table 9-1) gives data obtained from an intermittent installation and illustrates the effectof cycle frequency and duration of gas injection on operating efficiency. cycles per day immediately before the previous setting in Step 2. excessive injection is used gas each cycle. Production Seconds B/D Approximate Average Injection Rg1i. Decreasing the injection gas cycle frequency increases the time fluid can accumulate above the operative valve in mostintermittentinstallations. The final selection of the surface choke or opening through a metering valve is determined by trial and error until the desired operation is attained. Gas Injections.```. yet there was a loss of only 1 BPD with the 36 cpd setting.000 2.providedthelinepressure remains relatively constant.`. surface control of the injection gas must also be changed to maintain a minimum injected gas liquid ratio (R.`--- TABLE 9-1 DATA FROM AN INTERMITTENT INSTALLATION Duration of Injection Gas Cycle Time Between Frequency. Step 2 Reduce the number of injection gas cycles per dayuntil the well will no longer produce the desired rate of liquid production. The rate at which the gas pressure increases is dependent upon the choke size in the injection gas line.). Adjusting the controller to stay open until the slug reaches the surface will result in more gas being injected into the casing than is actually needed.`. If the producing rate from a well changes. the time cycle operated controller should be adjusted for minimum injection gas requirement for the desired production. Step 1 Adjust the controller for a duration of gas injection which will assure more injection gas volume than is normally required per cycle (approximately 500 C U ft. per cycle) resulted in the maximum producing rate. Since an injection Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. If the line pressure varies significantly. Minutes CycleslDay Duration Total of Gas Daily Injection..`. Step 3 Reset the controller for the number of injection gas The initial surface choke size selection for controlling the injection gas is calculated to pass thelift gas needed for the designed production rate. A cycle frequency of 24 cycles per day (60 min. a change in cycle frequency should be considered prior to redesigning an installation. When the line pressure is above theminimum pressure.200 1.000 ft./bbl per 1. After an operating valve closes and the slug surfaces. for 72 cpd and 36 cpd. . Then the injection gas cycle frequency and duration of gas injection should be checked periodically for most wells to assure continued efficient operation. thus lowering the opening pressure of the operating valve..-`-`.. If this ratio is excessive as a result of valve spread.the injection gas and production pressure begin to increase. The injection gas volume per cycle is reduced because of decreased valve spread and more liquid is recovered per cycle..A P I TITLExVT-6 Procedure for Adjusting. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

The production pressure will not reach a value that will result in the lower gas pressure needed for minimum injection gas requirement. The controlled maximum SURFACE GAS CONTROL SYSTEMS A. a much larger choke than that needed for straight choke control can be used and the starting slug length can be controlled by the set regulator pressure in most installations. a choke may be installed in the injection gas line to increase the durationof gas injection.`. 94 m 0732290 0532949 094 m Gas Lift is a function of well time in which to deliver fluid into the tubing which.`. Choke and Pressure Regulator D.is recomin mended. which opens the controller on time and closes it after a predetermined increase casing pressure...A P I TITLEmVT-b 116 production pressure at valve depth deliverability and tubing size.`.``. in turn. The pipe is adjusted for a long duration gas injection and the conof troller remains open until the maximum desired casing pressure is reached regardless of time required for this increase.`--- If the injection line choke size too large. 1. 9-2 . Choke controlof the injection gasis all that is needed for most production pressure operated valve installations..```. Time Cycle Controller B. By decreasing the choke size. Choke Control C.````. This combination also extends the advantagesof choke controlto wells with very low production rates..." Application o Time Cycle Operated Controller f With A Choke in the Injection Gas Line When the injection gas line pressure greatly exceeds the operating casing pressure for an intermittent installation. The two-pen pressure chart in Fig. casing pressure causes the gas lift to open only after a valve predetermined tubing pressure has been reached in the tubing. 9-2 illustrates typically good intermitting operation from four commonly used surface gas control systems.`. Choke and Time Cycle Controller Fig.. --`````. Application of A Combination Pressure Reducing Regulator and Choke Control This type of control is ideally suited for low capacity wells which would require an extremely small choke to obtain the minimum injection gas requirement. a pilot. The volume of injection gasused per cycle is governed by the casing pressure control. the valve will is open at a higher gas pressure than that required for adequate injection gas storage in the casing..Two-pen pressure chart Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. A small choke increases the possibility of freezing and will plug easily. The injection gas cycle frequency controlled by is the timing mechanism. ..`. With a pressure reducing regulator. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.-`-`. 9. increases the production pressure atvalve depth and reduces the gas pressure required to open the valve. The pressure reducing regulator controls the maximum casing pressure between injection gas cycles. the well has a longer VARIATION IN TIME CYCLE AND CHOKE CONTROL INJECTION GAS OF Application of Time Opening and Set Pressure Closing Controller When the injection gas line pressure varies significantly.. The gas pressure is allowed to vary with the choke size rather than attempting to maintain a fixed gas pressure for production control.

Maximum wellhead tubing pressure should occur following the surfacing of a slug.```..-`-`. preferably near the tank battery. If the time required for the tubing pressure to decrease after a slug has surfaced is excessive. tees. A streamlined wellhead is illustrated in Fig. etc. Rocking is recommended for two reasons: (1) To force fluid from thetubing and casing into the formation to uncover the top valve in a well without a standing valve. 8-3. This allows the slug to leave the vertical conduit and accumulate in the horizontal conduit..`. A common flowline for several wells is not recommended in most instances. --`````. rocking the well will open an upper valve and permit resumption of the unloading operation. In production pressure operated installations. The flowline must be kept clean of paraffin and other deposits to prevent excessive back pressure. excessive back pressure will result. In some wells the production has been more than doubled by removing paraffin from the flowline. Installation Will Not Unload When unloading operations cease before reaching the operating depth. Separator Pressure Separator pressure should be maintained as low as possible.``. A small wellhead tubing choke will significantly reduce the liquid slug recovery per cycle increase the injectiongas and requirement. The two surface conditions associatedwith wellhead tubing pressure that are detrimental to intermittent lift operation are: (1) An excessive increase in tubing pressure before the entire liquid slug can enter the flowline. it isrecommended that an installation be serviced as soon as possible to prevent a waste of injection gas and loss in production. Wellhead Configuration The wellhead should be streamlined to prevent excessive injection gas break-through from a decreasing slug velocity. paraffin deposition.. rocking an installation is recommended. Flowline Size and Condition The time required for the wellhead tubing pressure to decrease to separator pressure after a slug surfaces is a primary factor in the maximum producing rate from some installations.`. important minimum separator pressure becomes. If more than one well intermits simultaneously. High separator pressure reduces the starting slug length and production per cycle.`.`--- .. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.A P I TITLErVT-b ProcedureAdjusting.. for Regulating 94 m 0732270 0532750 8Ob m 117 and Analyzing Intermittent Lift Flow Installations IMPORTANCE OF WELLHEAD TUBING BACK PRESSURE TO REGULATION OF INJECTION GAS The maximum wellhead tubing pressure associated with the surfacing of a liquid slug is an indication of the slug length and/or restriction in the flowline such as a wellhead choke. All unnecessary ells. near the wellhead should be eliminated. If the trouble cannot be corrected by surface control.`. bends. the slugvelocity will be reduced and excessive gas break-through will occur. the maximum injection gas cycle frequency and producing capacity of a high capacity well are limited. tubing with line pressure in the casing.`.. etc. and (2) a prolonged period of time required for the wellhead tubing pressure to decrease to separator pressure after a slug has surfaced. or (2) To increase the tubing pressure at valve depth to lower the valve opening pressure. When this occurs Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. A flowline should be as large or larger than the tubing. Surface Choke in Flowline If an intermittent installation must be choked to reduce the rate of gas entry into a low pressure system. the choke should be located as far from the well as possible.. It is desirable to have wellhead and flowline conditions that result in the maximum tubing pressure being a true indication of the slug size. themore SUGGESTED REMEDIAL PROCEDURES ASSOCIATED WITH REGULATION OF INJECTION GAS There are several remedial procedures recommended before resorting to pulling the tubing.. Chapter 8. The lower the flowing bottomhole pressure.. The size and condition of the flowline affects this time. If the tubing pressure reaches a maximum before most of the slug enters the flowline. Rocking a gas lift installation is accomplishedby applying injection gas pressure to the top of the fluid column in the Valve Will Not Close A continuous high rate of decrease in casing pressure below the surface closing pressure of the operating valve may indicate that this valve is stuck open.````. Information indicating the trouble may often be obtained from recordings of the surface tubingand casing pressure.

`. As the products of corrosion are removed from the system. otherwise the heavy elements of the chemicals may plug the gas lift valves and injection chokes. As mentioned. products of corrosion Many times salt deposits can be removed by batching or will accumulate in the gas distribution linesand subsurface pumping fresh water into the casing. The well may be operated through several cycles with the gage in this position.the clean up. The static bottomhole pressure and flowing bottomhole pressure 9. If either corrosion inhibition or emulsion breaking chemicals are injected directly intothe gas. Many times an emulsion can be eliminated or the severity reduced by adding chemical to the injection gas. The point of gas injection into the tubing (depth of the operating valve) 8. The following basic information should be obtained when the installation is operating properlyso that it may be compared with later information when trouble occurs. The tubing is opened as fast as possible. A two-pen pressure recorder will illustrate the cycle frequency and pressure changes at the well. A low pressure gas meter is needed at the separation point to measure the volume of gas liberated from the produced fluids.```. The volume of fluid being produced from the well Items 1 through 6 can be determined with a 24-hour production test from the well. The chemical may be introduced just downstream of the compressors to protect the gas distribution lines to each well and to protect the subsurface casing tubing. and the wellhead tubing pressure is permitted to decrease to separator or atmospheric pressure. Addition of a corrosion mitigation program Emulsions will result in a clean up of the “dirty” system and a continued protection of the system. The injection period/cycle 4. equipment. the wireline specialist should be cautioned to watch for the loss of weight on the wireline. observation of a system in action requiresthe assistance of recording instruments.. If a system is operated with corrosive gaswithout protection for an extended period of time. can cause temporary operational problems. 1... large-ported valves. however. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Corrosion Corrosion inhibition can be effectively applied to gas lift systems. The first phase. The volume of fluid produced is measured at the tank battery or a metering station. A flowing pressure survey is the only positive way of determining the operating level and the formation pressure drawdown.s 5 .`.`. The gage should be left below the bottom valve through three complete gas lift cycles.. these problems are temporaryand must be weathered to cleanup the system. Salt can plug the bleed port in a pilot valve resulting in the main valve remaining open after the pilot section closes. TROUBLE-SHOOTING The basic principle in trouble-shooting is to know what to expect when a system is functioning correctly. they will tend to plug the gas lift valves and make the valves perform erratically.`.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.... If the operator is reasonably certain that the well is not lifting from the bottom valve. The amount of gas injected intothe well per day. Ways of lifting an emulsion include the use of a plunger. to a depth just below the bottom valve.````. This indicates that the gage is being blown up the tubing.``. The pressure gradient of the produced fluids --`````.A P I TITLExVT-6 118 74 0732270 0532951 742 Gas Lift the tubing should be shut in and the casing pressure increased to a point well above the opening pressurethe of valve.-`-`.then isolate deviations from this example determine possible causes and for the particular malfunctions observed. care should be taken to ensure that the chemical carrier is not of the type that will be dissolved in the gas. the scfkycle and the R. It is important that the normal cycle frequency and injection period be used during this survey to obtain representative data. and/or time cycle operated controller with a maximum pressure control. . and the operator should be prepared to shut the tubing wing valve at the first sign of this trouble. An emulsion is difficult tolift and requires more injection gas than would be requiredif it did not exist. The procedure is repeated several times or until the casing pressure decreases to the valve closing pressure.. A high pressure meter run at the well is required to measure the volume of lift gas used.`. The number of cycledday and the barreldcycle 3. It and is most effective when applied to new systems. he may move the gage up the hole one or two valves. Variations of casing pressure and tubing pressure during the cycle 7. gas) 2. This action creates a high pressure differential across the valve seat and will generally remove any trash holding the valve open. oil. and gas lift is no exception. In many cases. The preferred procedure for makingan operating pressure survey is to run the pressure gage (bomb) during the feed-in period. pilot operated valves. preferably to atmosphere to prevent overloading surface facilities. per day (water. The lift gas system line pressure 6 .

. Well using too much gas Clean out well A. Too much or too little gas Close Near Pull and clean E. Operating valve changed to OPERATING higher valve in installation PRESSURES production Pull well INCREASE B. check to determine the cause of a malfunction is to apply pressure on the tubing with no pressure on the casing. Lower valves plugged Wash or pull (Valve Open and Readjust injection gas controls D. in addition to opening the valve wide.`. If investigation indicates that a gas lift valve is failing to close tightly.`. the operator may lower the gage to the bottom of the tubing and shut thewell in for a pressure build up curve. sand accumulations WELL B. If this technique fails after two tries. Too small valve port Exchange for large valves ported HIGH BACK A.. TABLE 9-2 POSSIBLE CAUSES AND CURES OF SOME COMMON MALFUNCTIONS OF GAS LIFT SYSTEMS CURE CAUSE MALFUNCTION Rock the well. Standing valve stuck open Normal) --`````.````.. Shutoff the injection gasand wait until the casing pressure stabilizes before increasing the casing pressureagain. This fluid should be produced through the valves in a normal manner so that it tends to wash the valves and carry out trash that was i n the valves. Temperature rise in well by temperature. for Regulating 94 m 0732290 0532952 689 m 119 and Analyzing Intermittent Lift Flow Installations After completing the operating portion of the pressure survey. Of a in the gas lift 'ystem The first sign generally occurs when the production Operator that the fluid production is below normal. This procedure. the following procedure is recommended: Raise the pressure in the casing and tubing to the opening pressure of the gas lift valve so that it is wide open. develops a high pressure differential across the valve when the tubing is bled down rapidly. Flow line too small larger line Adjust injection control equipment D. flush the valve COMMUNICATION A. so that it tends to break Or crush trash that may be between the valve and seat.. Circulating sleeve open Close it Adjust injection gas for maximum A. Low injection pressure line Increase pressure or space closer valves THAN 1.```. Valve plugged Exchange for valves which are not affected C.`. Plugged formation SUDDEN DROP IN Check tubing below operating valve B. HEAD High separator Reset pressure back pressure valve or add gas accumulator tanks Loop flow line or replace it with C. and the flowing The operating cycles and build up curve should be plotted on a pressure time diagram. These conditions favor the passage of trash. with the tubing OPen.API TITLE*VT-6 ProcedureAdjusting.In these forms.000 C. inspect and rerun C. Pluggedpartially fouled Look valves.Packer leaking Xeset packer Pull. then reducethe tubing pressure rapidly. Valve stuck open BETWEEN CASING B. At this point. checks.`. .. flow line forclosed PRESSURE AT paraffin. the two-pen pressure recorded at the well becomes a most important instrument. Each well in the system must be checked to determine which well is not producing properly. If thisprocedure is not successful. Small heads Reduce fluid frequency cycle FLUID SLUG Fluid A.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. This step allowsthe to go On seat. Plugged tubing PRODUCTION C. or lower the test rack affecting valves opening pressure of bellows charged valves. D. the producing gradients that exist above and below bottomhole the operating valve.-`-`. the data are much easier to analyze.Repeatthisproceduretwice.``. Table 9-2 lists some common malfunctions of gas lift systems and suggestspossiblecauses and possiblecures.. The informationobtainedfrom a pressure survey is best evaluated by plotting the results on a graph. load very heavy Increase cycle frequency VELOCITY LESS B. In addi. Tubing leak AND TUBING D. A leak from the tubing would indicate a leaking tubing coupling or hole in the tubing since the gas lift valves have back checks. Tubing partially plugged Run paraffin knife or clean with solvent E. the two-pen recorder is the first instrument that the operator uses to determine what is wrong. it may be advisable to inject fluid down the casing to clean a leaking valve. The pressure depthdiagram will illustratethelocationof the operating valve. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. bleed all the pressure off the tubing and casing... A detergent in fresh water is particularly successfulin areas where iron sulfide deposits arecommon and fresh water will wash salt deposits from valves. increase the casing Pressure the gas lift valve opens. Interpretation of the bottomhole pressure record should determine the value of items 7 through 9. Valve partially plugged Flush with fresh water or solvent FEET MINUTE PER D. Then.`.A tion to locating the well that is having trouble.

`..-`-`.`.```.representativechartscanbeaddedforfuture become toosevere. These may be used by the operator in spottingproblemsbeforetheyencountered..`.API ITLE*VT-6 T 94 W 0732290 0532953 515 W APPENDIX 9=A TWO-PEN RECORDER CHARTS SHOWING EXAMPLES OF INTERMITTENT GAS LIFT MALFUNCTIONS Appendix 9-A contains eleven two-pen recorder charts In each of the charts. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. As other malfunctions are occur in an intermittent gas lift operation.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002...`. examples of malfunctions could be exaggerated for clarity. ....````.Thecharts were hand drawn so thatreference.``.`.. --`````. the outer trace represents a recording that illustratemost ofthecommon problemsthat may ofthecasingpressureandtheinnertracerepresentsa recording of the tubing pressure.

A : CYCLE FREQUENCY TOO LONG. USE CHOKE ANO TIMER INJECTIONFREQUENCVTOO F M ... REDUCE INJECTION FREQUENCYFORBETTEROPERATION. THIS CONDITION IS MDENCEO ON THE CASING PRESSURE BY A CHANGE I N THE PRESSURE DEWNE RATE AFTER A GAS LIFT VALVECLOSES.```.`. AS THIS CONTINUES.. Fig. C : CYCLE REDUCETO NORMAL. 9-Al Fig.`--- Fig.`. AN I B : TOO MUCH G S TUBING KICKS ARE TOO HIGH AND TOO THICK.``. THIS ILLUSTRATES HOW THE FLUID LOAD DECREASES FROM A MAXIMUM WHEN A W LIFT VALVE OPERATES THE FIRST TIME TO A MINIMUM WHEN THE VALVES OPERATE THE LAST TIME JUST BEFORE TRANS FERRING TO THE N m LWYER VALVE A. MDENCE OF EXCESSRlE FLUID LOAD W E N GAS LIFT VALVE WENS EARLY.`. A : WELL LOADING UP. TOO MUCH GAS I USED. TUBING KICKS ARELOW AND THICK. FREQUENCY TOO FAST.-`-`. GAS LIFT VALVE I NOTLOADED SO W E S S NOT OPEN UNTIL SECOND INJECTION. TOO MUCH W I M D E N T I NTUBING S KICK. THE PRESSURE HAS DECLINEDAFTER TIMER WAS ADJUSTED SO THAT NOW 2 INJECTIONSARE REQUIRE0 PER CYCLE. TUBING PRESSURE WES NOTHAVE TIME TO GAS SYSTEM PRESSURE TIMER IS THEN OPENED FOR LONGER INJECTION. 9-A4 Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.MAYCAUSEMORE THAN ONE W LIFT VALVETO OPEN..PROBLEM IS SHOWN BY SHORTER AND WlDER TUBING KICKS UNTIL THE LOWERVALVEBECOMESSUBMERGEDAND OPERATION CONTINUES ON AN UPPER VALVE..`. S TO HELP STABILIZEGAS SYSTEM PRESSURE.. . B : INCREASED CYCLEFREQUENCY YIELDSTALL THIN TUBING KICKS ANOMORE PRODUCTION. A DECLINE IN PRODUCEDFLUID I EXPERIENCED.. S B: WELL UNLOADING. WHEN INCREASES. S Fig.`.ERRATIC GAS SYSTEM PRESSURE.````. C S G PRES SURE DECLINE I RATHER SLOW. THE MULTIPLE "POINTS" ON THE TUBING PRESSURE ALSO MDENCE THIS MmwnON. 9-A2 A : INJECTION RATETOOHIGH. 9-A3 --`````.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.

ABOUT THE SAME EFFECT AS CHOKE. 9-A6 Fig. OPERATING PRESSURE A B W T THE SAME AS ABOVE. RESTRICTION OF CHOKE CAUSES SLUG VELOCITY TO BE SLOW AND PRESSURE REDUCTION PERIODTO BE LONG.. AT FIRST. 9-A8 Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`.`. . I T SHOWS AS A SMALL LEAK. S B : SMALL LEAK IN TUBING STRING.`.. THEN CASING PRESSURE DECLINES TOA VALLE WELL ABOYE THE TUBING PRESSURE. LEAK ISSMALL SINCE TUBING KICKS ARE NORMAL. MFFERENCE SHOWS WHEN GAS TO CASING IS SHUT MF.. THE TUBINGPRESSUREREACHESASTEADY.````. U R G E LEAK I N TUBINGSTRING.THE CASING PRESSURE GAS LIFT VALVECLOSES. TUBING PRES SURE CHANGES ARE GRADUAL BECAUSE RESTRICTIONI DISTANT FROM WELL S HEAD. GOODOPERATION I MAINTAINED.THE CASING PRESSURE DECLINES WELLBELOW THE NORMAL RANGE AND A SAW TOOTH PATTERN I TRACED. B : LEAK LOW IN TUBING.`.ELES VATED PRESSURE. Fig. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. B E M E N EACH CYCLE.`. TUBING KICKS ARE DECLINESSLOWLYAFTERTHE VERY GOOD. (FLUID SEAL OVER THE VALVE). Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API --`````. 9-A7 Fig.```. FIRSTSIGNOFLEAK I EVIDENCED WHEN CASING PRESSURE CONTINUES TO S S DECREASE AFTER GAS LIFT VALVE CLOSES. TUBING PRESSURE I S TOO HIGH. B : FLOW LINE RESTRICTION. WHEN THE LEAK EXCEEDSTHECYCLEGAS REQUIREMENT.. ALSO.. THEN LEAK I SUCH THAT THE CASING PRESSURE SOMETIMES FAILS TO OPEN THE S GAS LIFT VALVE..WHEN GAS TO C A S I N G I SHUT OFF CASING DECLINES TO A VALUE NEAR THE TUBING PRESSURE. 9-AS Fig.``.`--- A : LEAK IN SURFACE INTERMITTER.A P I TITLE+VT-6 9 4 122 m 0732290 532955 98 0 3 Gas Lift A : CHOKEDWELL. A : LEAK HIGH IN TUBING..-`-`.

TUBING PRESSUREHASROUNDED. FALL BACK IS EXCESSIVE W) FLUID RECOVERY IS SMALL. --`````. CASING PRESSURE FAILS TO GET HIGH ENOUGH. ONLY GAS IS OBTAJNED FROM FLUID. TO SMALL SLUGS.. AS CONDITION GETSWORSE.`. CASINGPRESSURE OPERATING SPRWD IS NR TUBING PRESSURE IS ROUNDEDAND SLUGGISH. VERY SLOW DECLINE OF CASING PRESSURE I AN INDICATOR S OFTHISPROBLEM..API T I T L E x V T . VERY L l l l l E FLUID IS PRODUCED.`--- .. 9-AIO A : NOTENOUGH W. TO A MlSlY SPRAY. Fig. TUBING KICKS CHANGE FROM GOOD SLUGS..6 9 4 Two-Pen Recorder Showing Charts Examples 0 7 3 2 2 9 0 0532956 2 2 4 W of Intermittent Cas Lift Malfunctions 123 GAS LINE PRESSUREBECOMESTOO LOW.SLUGGISHKICKS. 9-A I I Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.-`-`.." B: NOTENOUGH FLUID. BUT TUBING PRESSURE REFLECTS INJECTION CYCLES. THE USING PRESSURE STAYS ABOVE VALVE CLOSING PRESSURE AND TUBING PRESSURES STABILIZE.`.. 9-A9 Fig.. A : PLUGGED VALVE. O.`. BUT Fig.``.THE TUBING PRESSUREKICKSAREROUNDED AND MISTY BECAUSE OF EXCESSIVE FALL BACK. VERY SIMILAR TO SITUATION A.````.```.`.CASINGPRESSURE OPERATING SPREADIS TOO SMALL.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. THEN. B : PLUGGED TUBING.

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.`. small T. Plunger lift incorporates a piston that normally travels the entire length of the tubing string. To reduce fallback in a well being produced by intermittent gas lift. The most common uses are: I .`. In such wells. APPLICATIONS Numerous applications for exist plunger installations in both gas lift and natural flow wells. The slow velocity allows gas to channel 7. This interface changes the flow pattern during a lifting cycle from the familiar bullet shape of gas penetration of the liquid slug to a pattern whereby gas flow is possible only between the plunger’s outside diameter and the tubing walls.`.``.. thus a corresponding decrease in bottomhole pressure and an increase in liquid production. Normal production does not have to be cyclic.. To allow intermittent gas lift with surface restrictions. through liquid the column lose and lift efficiency. This chapter is primarily concerned with the use of plungers in intermittent gas lift applications. providing a solid and sealing interface between the lifting gas and the produced liquid. the gas pressure must be greater than these loads.. To maintain production by cycling in liquid ratio well. provides for the most efficient form of intermittent gas lift production available. the friction of the emulsion prevents establishment of the required lifting velocity.he quantity of gas that bypasses the plunger during a cycle flows up through the annular space and acts as a sweep to minimize liquid fallback. To unload accumulated liquid in a gas well.A P I TITLExVT-b 94 0732290 0532957 Lb0 CHAPTER 1O THE USE OF PLUNGERS IN GAS LIFT SYSTEMS --`````. a high gas- 2. scale. 4. Intermittent Gas Lift With a Packer This type of application is one where insufficient gas in available from the formation and all gas is provided by a supplemental source involving an outside source of energy. The function of plunger lift equipment is to provide for more efficient utilization of lifting gas energy i n any well that is or can be produced in a cyclic manner similar to intermittent gas lift. To improve efficiency in gas lift wells with severe emulsion problems. To clean the tubing in both gas lift and natural flow wells producing paraffin.````. 3.. 1... For deep intermittent gas lift with low injection gas pressure. TYPES OF PLUNGER LIFT Three possible types of downhole installations are: Normally the well’s bottomhole pressure is so low that the liquid fill-in from the formation is not sufficient to prevent gas break-through of the liquid column during an intermittent lift cycle.`.. by minimizing liquid fallback and eliminating possible gas penetration through the center of the liquid slug.`--- INTRODUCTION To lift the plunger and the liquid load above the plunger. The use of plunger equipment. 5 . and other deposits.```. Plunger application allows much greater utilization of the energy being provided and less fallback. 6.-`-`. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.`. but the well must be shut i n periodically to allow the plunger to operate. . A plunger lift system can help eliminate this problem..

`. 10-3.``. and 10-4 show possible variations in downhole installations where gas lift is used in conjunction with the plunger. Conventional Plunger Lift Without a Packer or With Communication Between Casing and Tubing Just Above the Packer. Equipment Required: @ Full bore master valve @ Flow valve @ Lubricator @ Time cycle control valve @ Secondflowoutlet @ Flow valve Standard Operation: 1.. Gas lift valve closes. Plunger falls to bottom and cycle recommences.. 3. further discussion of plunger application without additional gas will be omitted.Typical well installation for gas lift 2. 6.`. Atypical surface installation This is not a gas lift installation.. Plunger at bottom of well. the proper equipment must be chosen.. All flow through tubing. 10-1 .. \ TO SALES I Fig. I Retrievable Tubing (or Collar) Stop When the well’s tubing is not equipped with a seating nipple. Well being gas lifted on packer. . another application of plungers.A P I TITLESVT-6 94 Use The 0732290 0532958 O T 7 125 of Plungers in Gas Systems Lift Type Well: Insufficient gas from formation. a wireline set stop can be used for positioning the standing valve or bumper spring. 10-1. Fig.. Figs. Installations of this type are by far the most widely used. However. many systems using supplementary gas are now being installed. Standing Valve A standing valve prevents liquid in the tubing from falling back and contributes to an increase in efficiency of a plunger installation. Gas flow through time cycle intermitter opens the gas lift valve down hole. 4. thereby creating the differential necessary to lift the liquid plunger to and the surface. 10-2. Using these figures as a base starting at thebottom of and the well.. Although the standing valve is shown --`````.```. SELECTING THE PROPER EQUIPMENT Having determined that a well can be produced with a plunger and having determined what flow pattern will be used.`. partially closing off upper outlet.````.-`-`. Plunger arrives in lubricator. but does represent for gas lift using a plunger is shown in Fig.`. 3. Plunger Lift with a Packer (No Communication Between Casing and Tubing) Since this text is concerned with gas lift application of plungers. the equipment is explained under the following headings. 2.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. No storage period or external source of gas is possible. 10-5 shows a typical tubing stop. 7.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. This type of installation requires that all gas must come directly from the formation during the lifting cycle: and necessitates that the formation Rglf be greatly i n excess of that required for conventional plunger lift since the gas required per cycle must be produced during the cycle. Gas and liquid delivered through upper outlet. Tail gas is rapidly dissipated through lower outlet.`. 5. They are normally applied where the well supplies all of the energy.

Downhole equipment variations. an individual stop should be used to set the standing valve independently of the bumper spring.andstopset together will set up a vibration that rapidly causes a failure of the standing valve ball and seat. particularly if the well does not have liquid above the tubing stop. the standing valve should always be run in installations such as those shownin Figs.API T I T L E * V T .`--- in Fig. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. In these types of installations.. Bumper Spring The bumper spring. It prevents excessive shock on the plunger when falling to the bottom... 10-2. 10-3 and 10-4.````. 4. 2. gas lift and plunger lift Fig. Equipment Required Equlpment Required 1.b 126 94 W 0732290 0532959 T33 Gas Lift m l . 10-2 . 5.`. is an essential part of a plunger installation. Plunger Catcher 9. tubing stop may be eliminated Sub-surface plunger Bottom Bumper Spring Standing Valve Packer Unloading Conventional Gas Lift Valves Operating Gas Lift Valve Lubricator and Bumper Spring 8. Resistance to sticking in the tubing. However.. 10-3 . Time Cycle Controller 1.standingvalve. --`````. the standing valve prevents the high pressure lift gas from forcing the liquid below the standing valve back into the formation.-`-`. gas lift and plunger lift Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Plungers There are five operating characteristics to be considered when choosing the type of plunger to be used in a well. shown in Fig. Fig. 6. 2. Experiencehas shown that aplunger falling dryonabumperspring. 3. 4. it is often omitted from such installations.``. 10-6.. These are listed below: . 2.```. High shock and wear resistance.Downhole equipment variations.`. 3.`...`. 5.. 7.`. Sub-surface plunger Bumper Spring Retrievable Standing Valve Retrievable Tubing Stop* Gas Lift Valve 'If seating nipple is installed in well. It should be noted that if the plunger can fall to bottom dry.

10-5 . High degree of repeatability of valve operation.Downhole equipment variations. 5 .`.. 4. Ability to provide a good seal against the tubing during upward travel. Fig. 10-6 .Typical tubing stop Equipment Required 1.`.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.. 10-9... 5.. 7.``.. 4. and 10-10 show threedifferent plunger types.`. 8.-`-`.`. 9. 10-7. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. .APTITLEaVT-6 I 94 m 0732290 0532960 755 m 127 The Use of Plungers in Systems Gas Lift 3. 10-8.. Bumper Spring 3. The ability to fall rapidly through gas and liquid.`. Sub-surface plunger 2. 10. 6.Typical bumper spring --`````. Retrievable Tubing Stop Retrievable Duplex Standing Valve Gas Lift Valves Producing Gas Lift Valve Packer Seating Nipple Seating Nipple Retrievable Gas Lift Valve in Center Mount Mandrel Fig. gas lift and plunger lift Fig. Figs. 10-4 .```..````.

```. valve with integral rod.Brush type plunger without integral valve rod --`````..`...6 94 m 0732290 0 5 3 2 9 6 3 691 m 128 Gas Lift of Essentially. There are two types of seals (expanding blade and turbulent) and three typesof valving systems (valve without integral rod. 10-8 .. or 3 (first. 10-7 .`.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. 10-9 . second or third choice) according to their relative effectiveness in fulfilling the five operating characteristics listed previously.`.. ~ ~~ ~ .API T I T L E m V T . 2.`.``.Typical plunger with integral valve rod Fig.`. Table 10-1 lists the six plunger types and classifies them either 1. Fig.. there are six variations plungers available and the choice depends on the operating requirements of a well.-`-`.Wobble washer type plunger with integral valve rod Fig... and no valve at all). 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.````.

.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.````.`.`.. ..A P I TITLE+VT-b 94 0 7 3 2 2 9 0 0532762 5 2 8 129 The Use of Plungers in Gas Lift Systems Fig.-`-`..Expanding blade plunger with retractable seal (Photos courtesy Ferguson-BeauregardInc. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295..``..) (A) Shows seals in expanded position ( B } Shows seals in retracted position --`````.`..`. 10-10 ..`.```.

.i .-`-`..... can prevent initial operations... .. length. (4A) (4B) Fig./ Minimum gages A \ O.......Well Tubing The well's tubing must be gauged before running any subsurface equipment.. Check to determine the correct gage size.. (1) BUMPER SPRING...500 1... ... 10-11 ......... .. nominal O....900 2...... etc....063 2.. 1 - wobble-washer. Bent or crushed tubes will prevent satisfactory installation and paraffin... ft 2 2 2 2 2 ~~ 1............ in. ~ (1) Expanding blade seal without integral valve rod 2 2 (2) Expanding blade seal with integral valve rod (3) Expanding blade seal without valve (4) Turbulent seal.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.. ... (5) DUAL FLOW OUTLET . etc.`......``.. TABLE 10-2 GAGES FOR VARIOUS TUBING SIZES Tubing size.. Table 10-2 gives the gages recommended for various tubing sizes...Typical lubricator parts Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002......... with integral valve rod 2 1 ( 6 ) Turbulent seal.....900 2. ..````. without valve - 1 --`````.```.........D..630 1............`--- CAP ...`.......`.... ...`. wobble-washer.......660 1.... in....... (4) CATCHER ASSEMBLY ......375 2.. without integral valve rod (valve actuating rod is part of lubricator) ( 5 ) Turbulent seal.......250 1. etc...875 1'I4 1'12 2'/M 231~ 2718 1........ wobble-washer......312 TABLE 10-1 PLUNGER CLASSIFICATIONS Operating Characteristics Type of Plunger I NOTE: There are possible variations in gage requirements between equipment manufacturers.... scale... etc............ i2j STRIKER PAD .....D..`.. (3) FLOW B O D Y .

so the stop should be run independently) 5 Run retrievable bumper spring and latch to the pre- 1.-`-`. the flowing wellhead pressure is excessive after aslug surfaces. bumper spring (2).`. . (Note: stop this and standing valve are optional) 7. Gage viously set stop 6. Excessive areas in the tubing. In some instances of very low bottomhole pressure. assuming the well is set on a packer and will not be pulled. 10-11 shows the various parts of a typical dual flow outlet lubricator. plungers will allow greater pressure drawdown and thereby increase production from the intermittent lift well by allowing the liftingof smaller slugs on each cycle. Check master valve for proper size 2. the striker pad contains a rod for activation of the plunger valve.. The catcher assembly (5) holds the plunger in the lubricator for easy removal. a method should be provided to restrict the flow. and 4. install tor. Restrictions in surface wellhead and Christmas tree valves. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. 2. The plunger must reach the lubricator to allow removal for service and. and striker pad (3) are removed as a unit for access to the plunger for examination and repair. lift 4. (Note: proper jarring action to set the stop may not be possible through the bumper spring. Second Flow Outlet Where the chosen flow pattern of a well requires. PROPER INSTALLATION PROCEDURES The next part of a successful plunger installation installation of the equipment. Where a plunger without an integral valve rod is used. An undersize valve will not allow plunger passage. 2.. the valve is opened. With an integral rod plunger... so that it can activate a plunger arrival system or be retrieved for service. and commence operation.`. This restriction may be necessary to allow the plunger to lift past the second flow outlet. using the existing flow If outlet.``. In addition. where installed. Lubricator A lubricator is an integral part of any plunger installation. The injection gas pressure is low relative to the required depth of lift. The striker pad (3) is the initial contact of the plunger with the lubricator.````.. 1. High rate intermittent gas lift operations. Excessive well deviation. Some of these conditions are listed here. --`````. to activate a plunger arrival system. the cap ( l ) . 1. but not greater than.and an oversize valve can possibly prevent the plunger from reaching the lubricator because of excessive gasbypassing around the plunger. a paraffin deposition problem exists. plunger lubrica- SUMMARY A plunger will increase theefficiency of most intermittent gas lift installations by preventing gas from breaking through the liquid slug. Remove wireline lubricator. a plunger should be considered for an intermittent gas lift installation when: 3. 3. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.```. Fig.. The cap (1) contains a spring to resist the force of the rising plunger.the tubing size. a second flow outlet is provided. Restricted areas in the tubing. Set retrievable stop just above the bottom gas valve.`. Set retrievable stopand standing valve just above the bottom of the tubing.API TITLEWVT-b 74 m 0732290 O532764 3 T 0 m The Use of Plungers in Gas Lift Systems 131 Master Valve The master valve of a well must have afull bore equal to.. There are also well conditions that prohibit the use of a plunger. Run plunger to bottom on a wireline to ensure free travel 3. 5 .`--- In the lubricator shown.`. A separate of the flow outunit let of an existing tree can be used. is the Listed below are the sequential operations involved in running a plunger installation..`.

--`````. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.Gas lift operation in which gas is injected continuously into the liquid column. Also used to designate the fluid pressure at the level of gas injection.. API Gravity. Annulus .The responsive element of a gas lift valve. source API . It provides an area for pressure to act onand to move the valve stem.Formationfluidsareproduced upa through the tubing-casing annulus and recovered at the surface.Barrels of water per day.(Same as annular flow. Artificial Lift -The application of energy from an outside to lift reservoir fluids fromproducing a well. within the well casing.A P I TITLE*VT-b 132 9L1 m 0732290 5329b5 37 0 2 Gas Lift W GLOSSARY -AAger .A special type of intermittent gas lift which uses the tubing-casing annulus or a “bottle” on the. .`.Specific gravity of crude oil as measured by system recommended by API..-`-`.. BLPD . Cooler .`--- -BBack Pressure -The pressure existing within the producing string at the surface in a gas lift well. Continuous Flow Gas Lift . Dome . of agas Drawdown -The difference in pressure (psi) between the static (shut-in) bottomhole pressure and the flowing bottomhole pressure at a constant rate fluid production. . charged gas valves to lift Cross-over Seat -A special seat for gas lift valvewhich a directs the pressure applied at the nose the gas lift valve of to the bellows and the-pressure applied to the-holes in the side of the valve to the under side of the seat. Dill Coreor Schrader Core Valve -Valve in the top of the gaslift valve used in chargingthebellows with nitrogen...A water filledpressurechamber used to apply external pressureto gas lift valves to flex the bellows during the pressure setting operation.`. Bellows .and chokes assembled at the top of a well to control the flow of oil and gas.A term applied to the control valves.Thespace between tubing and casing. the pressure against which the operating valve injects gas.. Reservoir fluids and‘the injected gas are produced from the wellhead at the surface without interruption.````. It isused most often in fluid operated valves.``.A refrigerated water bath used to cool pressure 60°F when setting them..`. of Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.Barrels of total liquid per day. pressure gages.The volume chamberinsidethebellows lift valve. Chamber Lift .A well that will not flow by itself.```. measured at the surface. AnnularFlow .American PetroleumInstitute.) Casing Pressure -The pressure. -CCasing Flow .`..Pressureatsomegiven depth i n the well. Bottomhole Pressure (BHP) . Christmas Tree . Choke -A type of orifice installed in a line in whichfluid is flowing. It performsthesamefunctionasthediaphragmoperated valve. end of the tubing string for the accumulation of formation liquids between cycles. BOPD .Barrels of Oil Per dayBWPD . The purpose is to restrict the flow and control the rate of production.D Dead Well . usually opposite the producing n.`.

.````. .The relation.A surface control which may be adjusted and set to operate a motor valve at Intermittent Flow . valve will either be the open or closed to provide a controllable communication between the tubing and casing for gas passage. -KKick-off Pressure -The gas injection pressure available for unloading fluids from a gas lift down to the operatwell ing valve depth. Formation (F Gas) Gas -Gas which is produced from the oil reservoir with the produced liquids.Unload and place a well on gas lift.The volume of reservoir fluids produced at the surface following a short period of gas injection.API TITLE*VT-6 9 4 W 0732270 O532766 L73 -EEmulsion .`. as in intermittent operation.`. --`````.. Kick a Well Off .``.`.Change in pressure or temperature per unit in depth.The number of standard cubic feet of gas produced with a stock tank barrel of oil.`. Gas-Liquid Ratio(GLR = RE. Normally given in OFF/100Ft... -GGas Lift -A method of artificial lift in which the energy of compressed gas is used directly to lift fluids to the surface. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295.The wireline tool which guides the fluids and wireline gas lift valve into the mandrel pocket when installing the valve or guides the pulling tools onto the valve when recovering the valve.Gas lift operation i n which gas is predetermined intervals of time and also control the durainjected periodically into the liquid column. with reservoir tion of the operating or injection period.The surfacepipe through which the oil travels from the well to storage.```.The Pressure existing at the depth of the production formation in a well at a constant rate of fluid production. -FFlowline .`. Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. Geothermal Gradient -The naturally occurring increase of temperature with depth in undisturbed ground. Fluid or Production Operated Valve -A gas lift valve that utilizes the pressure in the production conduit as its primary operating medium.-`-`.) The number of standard cubic feet of gas produced with a stock tank barrel of liquid changeand water).A mixture of oil and water that requires treatment before the oil and water will separate. Flowing Bottomhole Pressure (FBHP) . by manipulation of the injection gas pressure and the producing pressure.. Gas Lift Valve -A pressure regulator mounted on or in the tubing string so that. Kick-Over Tool .`--- -H“Head” . (oil Gas-oil Ratio (GOR = Rgo).. Gradient . IPR (Inflow Performance Relationship) . Intermitter (Time Cycle Controller) ... ing rate for a particular well.fluids and injected gas being produced from the wellhead at ship of flowing bottomhole pressure to gross liquid producthe surface for an interval following each injection period.

Standard cubic feet per stock tank barrel. water or total Spring LoadedValve -A gas lift valve which uses a spring liquid as measured in the stock tank.. scf/STB . transmitted.. -0Operating Pressure-The gas injection pressure available to maintain the desired rateof fluid production in a gas lift well under settled continuous or intermittent operation.`. This term is commonly used to express the volume of gas or tubing retrievable.-`-`.The pressure at formation depth in a well after the well is shut-in and the pressures Stock Tank . to thedifference between static and flowing bottomhole pressures (drawdown). Static Bottomhole Pressure .Tubing inside Mandrel ..One thousand standard feet cubic of gas.Alargevalve used to shut in a well. atmospheric pressure prior to pumping them elsewhere. Pressure Survey-An operation tomeasure and record the pressures at various depths in the well bore with the well Pocket .`. in barrels per day. etc.Thousands of cubic feet per barrel. Thegas is usuallynitrogen.````. The volume of oil. gases. The pressures may be meas(retrievable) mandrel. -PProductivity Index (PI=J) -The ratioof fluid production rate.The locking device for a wireline gas lift to valve lock the valve in the mandrel...A gas lift valve that utilizes injection gas pressure as itsprimary operating medium. " Macaroni String . reservoir fluids will rise when the producing conduit is open Water is the standard for liquids and air is the standard for to atmospheric pressure. STB .`.. Pit . Load Fluid(KillFluid) .`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002.Liquidusedtofillthe well before pulling the tubing..) produced. Test Rack (Tester) -An arrangement of gas lift receivers. Master Valve . to provide the closing force forthe valve. in pounds per square inch.API TITLErVT-6 134 Lift 94 Gas 0732290 0532967 DDT m -LLatch .`. Mscf/B(MCFIB) .The ratio of the weight of a substance Static Fluid Level -The depth below the surface to which to the weight of an equal volume of a standard substance.`.The gas lift valve receiver inside a wireline either producing or shut-in. Mscf (MCF) .```.An emergency tank or shallow pond to hold salt water. valving etc. prior to disposal.An operation to measure and record the temperature at various depths in the well bore with the well either producing or shut-in..``. force for thevalve.. gages. Pressure Operated Valve . .Stock tank barrel. or consumed in a given period of time (scf .The responsive element is usually a bellows. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Temperature Survey .(See wireline tubing. charge inside the responsive element to provide the closing -SSpecific Gravity . ured and recorded by either a self-contained unit run on a solid wireline or a unit run on an electric wireline with an Pressure Charged Valve -A gas valve which usesa gas lift instantaneous recording at the surface. so that nitrogen gas pressure may be --`````. -TTail Plug -The plug in the endof a gas lift valve which is the final seal on the dome.standard cubic foot of gas). The temperatures may be measured and recorded at either a self-contained unit run on a solid wireline or a unit run on an electric wireline with an instantaneous recording at the surface..A tank for holding the produced liquids at have been stabilized.

`. ft. Opening force due to pressure valve stem. Closing force ongas lift valve.````. Productivity Index (J=PI). Distance between valves.```. Area of Valve Seat or Port-Ball seat contact area. Water Cut fraction of total produced liquid.`.. psi/ft. Ratio of Gas Lift Valve Port to Bellows area: From Mfg.``.. Wireline (Retrievable) Mandrel -A tubular member with an internal receiver for a wireline (retrievable) gas lift valve. sq. . Deg. Measured depth of deviated wells. ft. The mandrel becomes an integral part of the tubing string. psi/ft. A tubing pup joint with a lug for mounting a conventional or tubing retrievable gas lift valve. Gas gradient of injection gas. ft. Depth of operative valve or gas injection. ' / d h inches. Data.-`-`. This was the first method of mounting gas lift valves. Gradient of oil. on pounds force.`. F/100 Ft. Tubing Retrievable Mandrel -Commonly called conven- Tubing Retrievable Gas Lift Valve . on top of perfs. Correction factor for gas passage through a choke. A gas lift valve mounted on a tubing retrievable mandrel..A gas lift valve mounted inside the tubing that can be installed and recovered by solid wireline operations without disturbing the tubing.`--- Flowing gradient below point of gas injection. C T Temperature correction factor for gas. in. ft. psi. psi/ft.`.. psi/ft. Dv n D. -WWellhead . pounds force. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Gas pressure to deter interference. Gradient. Deg. ft.Commonly called a conventional gas lift valve.`... in.. Flowing gradient above point tion. It is necessary to pull the tubing to recover the valves. Discharge coefficientfor gas flow through an orifice. Flowing production temperature gradient. psi/ft... Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002. F/100 ft. ck C d Choke or Port diameterof the Gas Lift Valve.The stack of valves and fittings at the surface on top of a well. of gas injec--`````. Depth of top valve. Opening force dueto pressure on the bellows.7 A P I TITLEaVT-b 94 m 0732290 0532968 Glossary T46 m 1 applied to the bellows of a gaslift valve and simultaneously measured to determine the pressure required to open the gas lift valve. ft. nitrogen Total opening force on valve. Static gradient of load fluid. consequently the name of conventional gas lift valve. psi/ft. Wireline (Retrievable) Valve . Troubleshooting . Reference depthof well: Normally measured midpoint of perfs. Tubing Flow . BLPD/PSI. ft. Static Temperature gradient. Minimum spacing of gas lift valves or mandrels. SYMBOLS Total effective area of Bellows.Formation fluids are produced up through and recovered from the tubing at the surface. sq. Gradient of produced water. psi/ft.The process of determining and correcting a problem with a gas lift well. Total number of gas lift valves. pounds force. Pressure Drop in Inj. ft. pounds force.. The mandrel is an integral part of the tubing string. Oil cut fraction of total produced liquid. F. Depth on nth valve. tional or standard mandrel. Depth of gas injection.

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Pressure applied under the bellows a gas of lift valve, psig. Pressure applied under the stem of a gas lift valve, psig. Bubble point pressureof the produced oil, psig. Pressure of bellows at temperature of nth valve, psig. Bellows pressure at 60 deg. F., psig. Injection gas pressure downstreamof surface choke, psig Effective opening pressure due to production pressure, psig. Max available pressureof injection gas at surface, psig. Injection gas pressure downstream of restriction at surface, psig Max pressure of injection gas at D,, psig. Operating gas injection pressure at valve number 1, psig. Operating gas injection pressure at nth valve, psig. Surface operating gas injection pressure to open valve 1, psig. Surface operating gas injection pressure to open nth valve, psig. Max kickoff gas injection pressure at surface, psig. Max flowing pressure at valve 1 while lifting deeper, psig. Max flowing pressure at nth valve while lifting deeper, psig. Min flowing pressure at valve 1 while unloading, psig. Min flowing pressure at nth valve while unloading, psig. Flowing production pressure at valve 1, psig. Flowing production pressure at nth valve, psig. Production pressure effect, psig. Production pressure effect factor - Mfg. data - (Previously TEF)

Pressure at standard conditions, psig. Pressure of oil & gas separator, psig. Pressure safety factor to ensure valve is uncovered, psig. Spring pressure effect on valve, psig. Max unloading pressure at nth valve when uncovered, psig. Valve closing pressure of valve 1 at depth, psig. Valve closing pressure of nth valve at depth, psig. Surface closing pressure of valve 1, psig. Surface closing pressure nth valve, psig. of Test rack set opening pressure for valve 1, psig. Test rack set opening pressure for nth valve, psig. Flowing bottomhole pressure at D,, psig. Flowing pressure at the wellhead, psig. Static bottomhole formation or reservoir pressure, psig. Max production rate below the bubble point, BLPD. Gas production ratefromformation, d. Injection gas rate, Mscf/d. Total gas rate measured (formation tion), Mscf/d. Total liquid rate, BLPD Maximum liquid rate of well, BLPD. Total oil production rate, BOPD. Production rate at the bubble point, BLPD. Total water production rate, BWPD Ratio of gas to liquid, scf/bbl. Ratio of formation gas to liquid, scf/bbl. Ratio of injected gas to liquid, scf/bbl. Ratio of gas to oil, scf/bbl. Ratio of gas injected to oil, scf/bbl. Specific gravity of produced gas. Specific gravity of injected gas. Specific gravity of oil. Mscf

Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API

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94 M 0 7 3 2 2 9 0 5 3 2 9 7 0 0
Glossary

bT4

m
137

SG ,
T, TB T,

Specific gravity

of produced water.

T,, T"(") Th w Z

Temperature at standard conditions, deg. F. Temperature at valve I depth, deg. F. Temperature at nth valve, deg. F. Flowing temperature at wellhead, deg. F. Gas compression factor at average pressure and temperature.

Average gas injection temperature, deg. ETt Formation temperature, deg. F. Surface temperature of injection gas, deg. F. Static earth surface temperature, deg. F.

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0732290 0532973 530
Gas Lift

REFERENCES
1. Gilbert, W.E.: Flowing and Gas-Lift Well Perform-

ance, Drilling and Production Practice, 126 (1954), American Petroleum Institute, Production Department. 2. Vogel, J.V.: Inflow Performance Relationships for Solution Gas Drive Wells, SPE 1476, a paper presented at the 41st Annual Fall Meeting of the Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME, Dallas, Texas, October 2-5, 1966, and later published in Transactions, SPE of AIME, Vol. 243 (1968).
3. Poettmann, F. H. and Carpenter, P.G.: The Multiphase Flow of Gas, Oil and Water Through Vertical Flow Strings, Drilling and Production Practice, 257 (1952), American Petroleum Institute, Production Department.

12. Flanigan, O.: Effect of Uphill Flow on Pressure Drop in Design of Two-Phase Gathering Systems, Oil and Gas Journal, Vol. 56. 132 (March 10, 1958).

13. Eaton, BenA. et al: The Prediction of Flow Patterns, Liquid Holdup and Pressure Losses Occurring During Continuous Two-Phase Flow in Horizontal Pipelines, Journal of Petroleum Technology, 3 15-328 (June 1967), Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME. 14. Dukler, A.E., et al: Frictional Pressure Drop in TwoPhase Flow: B. An Approach Through Similarity Analysis, Vol. 10,44-51(January1964),AIChE Journal. 15. Beggs, H.D. and Brill, J.P.: An Experimental Study of Two-Phase Flow in Inclined Pipes, 607 (May 1973), Journal of Petroleum Technology, Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME. 16. Espanol, J.H. Holmes, C.S. and Brown, K.E.: A Comparison of Existing Multiphase Flow Methods for the Calculation of Pressure Drop in Vertical Wells. Paper No. SPE 2553, 44th Annual Fall Meeting of SPE, Denver, Colorado (September 28 - October 1, 1969).

4. Baxendell, P.D. and Thomas, R.: The Calculation of Pressure Gradients in High-Rate Flowing Wells, Journal of PetroleumTechnology,1023-1028(1961), Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME.
5. Duns, H. Jr. and Ros, N.C.J.: Vertical Flow of Gas and Liquid Mixtures from Boreholes, Proceedings, Sixth World Petroleum Congress, Frankfurt, Germany, Section II, Paper 22-PG (June 19-26, 1963).

6. Johnson, A. J.: Vertical Two-Phase Flow Pressure Traverses, Letter from Shell Development Company Outlining Terms, Conditions and Description of Computer Program Mk 1X-R for Sale to Industry (December 5, 1963).
7. Hagedorn, A.R. and Brown, K.E.: The Effect of LiquidViscosity on Two-Phase Flow,Journal of PetroleumTechnology,203-210(February1964), Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME.

1 . Vohra, I.R., Robinson, J.R. and Brill, J.P.: Evalua7 tion of Three New Methods for Predicting Pressure Losses in Vertical Oil Well Tubing, 829-832 (August 1974), Journal of Petroleum Technology, Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME.
18. Lawson, D.J. and Brill, J.P.: A Statistical Evaluation of Methods Used to Predict Pressure Losses for Multi-phase Flow in Vertical Oil Well Tubing, 903914 (August 1974), Journal of Petroleum Technology, Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME. 19. Gregory, G.A., Fogarasi, M. and Aziz, K.: Analysis of Vertical Two-Phase Flow Calculations: Crude Oil-Gas Flow in Well Tubing, 86-92 (January - March 1980), Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology. 20. Ros, N.C.J.: Simultaneous Flow of Gas and Liquid as Encountered in Oil Wells, Joint AIChE-SPE Symposium, Tulsa, Oklahoma (September 25-28, 1960). 21. Ros, N.C.J.: Simultaneous Flow of Gas and Liquid as Encountered inWell Tubing, 1037 (October 1961), Journal of Petroleum Technology, Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME. 22. Brown, E.J.P.: Practical Aspects of Predicting Errors in Two-Phase Pressure-Loss Calculations, 5 15522 (April 1975), Journal of Petroleum Technology, Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME.

8. Orkiszewski, J.: Predicting Two-Phase Pressure Drops in Vertical Pipe, Journal of Petroleum Technology, 829 (June 1967), Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME. 9. Moreland, E.E.: Report - Study of Tubing Pressure in Vertical and Deviated Wells Part 6: Moreland Mobil - Shell - Method, Mobil R&D Lab Memorandum 1976. 10. Baker, Ovid: Design of Pipelines for the Simultaneous Flow of Oil and Gas, Oil and Gas Journal, Vol. 53, 185-195 (1954). 11. Lockhart, R.W. and Martinelli, R.C.: Proposed Correlation of Data for Isothermal Two-Phase Two Component Flow in Pipe Lines, Chemical Engineering Progr., Vol 45, 39 (1949).

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Orifices. 39. Guiberson Oil Tools.: Production Optimization in the Provincia Field. Testing and Setting Gas Lift Valves. H. 2. Neely. J. Katz. Journal of Petroleum Technology (March 1963).: Determining the Most Profitable Gas Injection Pressure for Gas Lift Installation.: An analytical Concept of the Static and Dynamic Parameters of Intermittent Gas Lift. J.W.: Improving Gas Lift Performance in a Large North African Oil Field.D. J.11 (1962). SPE Paper No. 8408. Montgomery. San Antonio. Journal of Petroleum Technology. 46. SPE Paper No.W.: Optimizing Gas Lift Systems. Doolittle. Jesse S. O’Connell. 38. Davis. 40. J.A. Neely. Jacobson L. Oklahoma.: 12th Annual Southwest Petroleum Short Course. T.R.L.. Recommended Practice for Design of Continuous Flow Gas Lift Installations using injection Pressure Operated Valves.H.. R.`.. Redden. Prentice-Hall.. F. J. Blann.: A Field Test and Analytical Study of Intermittent Gas Lift.1981. Winkler. Teledyne Geotech. Journal of Petroleum Technology (April 1982) 696-702. Section 5 . and Milburn. Ed. Dufresne. P. (1972). presented at 198 1 and Wilson.W. 43. 34. Brown. 825-831 (July 1976).. Specifications and Valve Performance Data. B.6 9 4 0732290 0532972 4 7 7 m 139 References 23. 25.. 37.. 29. and Smith S. W. SPE PE (Feb. 1965.`..A. Paper No. K. Colombia.. 3 1. A. (1974). J. 1989) 9-14. K.. --`````. J. Camco. Berry.: Paper. API Recommended Practice 11V5 (RP 1 1 V5). S. Vol. F. 42.. R. 53. J. October 5-7.``. Tulsa. B. ThomasC. and Tiemann. Brown.. Gas Processors Suppliers Association (GPSA).E. and Vogel. 3A. Pressure Gradient Curves.T. 44. Recommended Practice for Repair.`--- Copyright American Petroleum Institute Reproduced by IHS under license with API Document provided by IHS Licensee=eni spa/5928701002..: Thermodynamics for Engineers. 2nd Edition (1964). J. Field.Bureau of Mines Monograph # 10.763-764. 45.-`-`. Maintenance and Trouble-shooting of Gas Lift Installations. Engineering Data Book. Supervisory System for Gas Lift Control. T. Specification for Gas Lift Valves. Focht. Phase Relations of Gas Condensate Fluids.`.T. A.V. Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME.. P.: Gas Lift Increases High Volume Production From Claymore Field.E. F..G. Reverse How Valves and Dummy Valves. D. Journal of Petroleum Technology (August 1984).. J. 1974.. 09/07/2004 06:57:24 MDT Questions or comments about this message: please call the Document Policy Group at 303-397-2295. Viking Shop (1973).: Handbook for Gas Measurement in the Field. Wall. White. and Williams. API Spec 11V1.: Camco Gas Lift Manual. Martinez.C.`. Journal of Petroleum Technology (March 1988) 277-82. TTU. 28. p. 48. API Recommended Practice l l V 7 (RP llV7). 1979. et al: Handbook of Natural Gas Engineering (1959). 261 (1980) PennWell Books. Cornish. FOS. L. R.`. API Recommended Practice 11V6 (RP 11V6).S. 52. et al: The Technology of Artificial Lift Methods. J. 24. Capps. D..Ventura Ave.. McGraw-Hill Book Company.D. 36. E. Brown.B.B. 5 150.W. International Text Book Company. SPEJ (Oct.: Plunger Lift Performance Criteria with Operating Experience . 33.: Petroleum Production Handbook. Gipson. SPE 10377. Englewood Cliffs.. Exxon Production Research (1 978). et al: Gas Lift Theory and Practice.D. Blann. Clegg.D.: World Oil.W.: The Vertical Multiphase Flow of Oil and Gas at High Rates.````. 1982. 105-107 (January 1981). New Jersey. McGraw-Hill Book Company Inc. Artificial Lift-Gas Lift Engineering. (1962).D. Teledyne Merla.```. 30.: Flowing Well and Gas Lift Systems.L. PetroleumExtension Service (PETEX). 1982.Effect of Back Pressure on Intermittent Gas Lift. Appendix C 163 (1967). 1974) 502-12.E.. & Gaul. Plant Processing of Natural Gas. J. F. Inc. 41. and Stacha. Vol. Clegg. TX. 32. . 27. Sherman.E. B. L... R.. G. Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME. Recommended Practice for Operation. 49.R. DeMoss. Frick. 801-41H... SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition. R.. 50. Blann.API T I T L E x V T .: High Rate Artificial Lift. 5 l . API D&P Practices 1965.. Vol. H. R.. 47. Inc. 35. 124-140. 26. Blann. C.P. Winkler. and Faber..

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