Formation Multi-Tester (FMT) Principles, Theory, and Interpretation

01987 Western Atlas International

Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Operation of the FMT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Calibrations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Strain Gauge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Quartz Gauge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Qualitative Indications from FMT Pretest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Reservoir Fluid Properties . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Density or Specific Gravity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Resistivity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Viscosity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fluid SampleTest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Variable Pressure Control (VPC). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Segregated Samples . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Estimating Sampling Time. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Evaluating Recovered Fluid Samples . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . When Sample Recovery is Primary Native Formation Fluids . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Prediction of Water Cut . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Recovery of Small Volumes of Formation Fluid or No Formation Fluid. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Technique for Various Size Recoveries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fluid Flow in Porous Media . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Darcy’s Law . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pressure Drawdown - Permeability Estimate. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pressure Buildup - Permeability Estimate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Spherical Pressure Buildup - Permeability and Formation Pressure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cylindrical Buildup - Permeability and Formation Pressure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Comparison of Permeability Estimates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bed Thickness Definition During Buildup. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Subsurface Pressure Regimes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hydrostatic Pressure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Overburden Pressure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Formation Pressure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Applications of FMT Pressure Measurements. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Measured Depth vs. True Vertical Depth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pressure Regimes in Water-Bearing Reservoirs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Supercharging . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Selection of Test Intervals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pressure Gradients and Particular Pressure Regimes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Determination of Movable Formation Fluid Density in Zones with High Connate Water Resistivity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Defining Gas/Liquid and Oil/Water Contacts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Zone Isolation or Communication . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Determination of Oil/Water Contact Below Total Depth of the Borehole. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Reservoir and Zonal Depletion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Monitor Injection Program in In-Field Wells . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fracture Detection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Extremely Tight Formations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Grain Size Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FMT Pulse Testing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FMTREALITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . List of Symbols, Including Subscripts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bibliography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Appendix A . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Permeability from Drawdown . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Permeability from Spherical Buildup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Effective Bed Thickness Computation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Permeability from Cylindrical Buildup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Time Estimate for Sampling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 2 7 7 8 8 14 14 16 16 20 21 21 21 23 23 25 26 26 27 28 30 31 31 34 35 37 37 37 38 38 39 39 41 41 42 42 42 42 44 46 47 47 47 49 49 50 50 55 56 56 58 58 58 59 59

Formation Multi-Tester (FMT) Principles, Theory, and Interpretation

The Formation Multi-Tester (FMT) is a sophisticated system of wireline testing equipment designed to measure formation pressures at any number of depth locations per single trip into an uncased wellbore. These pretest pressure measurements also provide a means of confirming adequate packer seal and a quick qualitative estimate of formation permeability prior to making a decision regarding the opening of one or both of the fluid sample chambers. Run on a multi-conductor logging cable, the FMT can be accurately positioned at selected depths by reference to a sequentially recorded spontaneous potential (SP) or gamma ray (GR). Formation testing normally follows the recording and evaluation of openhole logs from which potential target intervals are identified. Wireline

test information provides a fast and economical method for identifying theproduction potential of the targeted reservoirs.

The FMT provides more detailed and reliable vertical pressure profiles than can be expected from drillstem tests (DST). The ability to acquire multiple pressure readings provides a much quicker and less expensive method for obtaining a reasonably accurate profile of vertical pressure gradients. FMT pressure measurements are acquired from specific depth intervals while DST gauges are commonly located in the test tool string above the interval tested. The nature of the fluid between the zone being tested and the DST gauge depth provides for some uncertainty. A profile of several DST pressures through a common pressure regime may not always define an accurate gradient. In a similar environment, FMT pressure data often provides descriptive gradients for gas or fluid type. The data given in Fig. 1 exemplify such a case. FMT pressure data are recorded on film and presented in both analog and easy-to-read digital formats. The stationary recordings at individual depths are a plot of pressure vs. time. Direct digital readouts are observable on surface instrumentation during the test, allowing for quick decisions on whether or not to open the fluid sample chambers. Two sample chambers can be filled at the
same depth and segregated, or the two chambers can be filled at two different depths per trip in the borehole. Several chamber sizes are available for sampling. A

Comparison of FMT pretest pressures and drillstem test pressures.

unique variablepressurecontrol (VPC) provides forimproved sampling by avoiding excessive differential pressure across the packer seal. An analysis of the

recovered fluids is provided to aid in prediction of reservoir production characteristics.
The capability for multiple pretest pressure recordings has made the FMT the primary openhole system for measuring vertical pressure distribution in a wellbore.

The numerous pressure readings have been used to establish the hydrostatic gradients of mud columns, fluid and gas gradients in reservoir rocks, and vertical permeability barriers. Comparisons of FMT gradients on adjacent wells have been found useful in describing the presence or absence of lateral communication. Information from the pressure measurements can be significant in association with lost returns during cementing operations. Selective perforating and selection of methods to best control acid or frac fluid placement can also be improved through the use of FMT data. The information derived from the FMT can therefore be used to optimize completion methods and maximize ultimate reservoir recovery. 1


The FMT makes pressure measurements while the tool is stationary at selected depths in an uncased borehole. If the pretest pressures indicate a good packer seal to the formation and a relatively permeable zone, fluid samples may be recovered by opening a sample valve and allowing one of the two sample chambers to fill. Photographs of the FMT packer section are shown in Fig. 2.

The downhole tool system includes the control electronics, a hydraulic section, and the test sample chambers. A schematic diagram of the subsurface

assembly is shown in Fig. 3. The control electronics and hydraulics are located in the upper part of the tool string, with the packer seal section and pistons directly below. Sample chambers are attached to the lower end of the tool assembly. A number of different chamber sizes are currently available (e. g., 1 gallon, 4 liter, 10 liter, and 20 liter). Other unique sizes may be found, depending upon geographical location. Without sample chambers on the tool string, the packer section is located approximately 5.5 ft off bottom, or 9 ft if the Hewlett-Packard quartz gauge is run. With two chambers of 10-liter capacity each, the packer section is located approximately 31 ft off bottom (34.5 ft with the H-P gauge).

FIGURE 2 Three views of the FMT packer section.

FIGURE 3 Schematic diagram of the subsurface assembly of FMT with Variable Pressure Control.


Operation of the downhole equipment is controlled from thesurfacelogging unit. A film recording is made of each complete cycle of operation. Recorded measurements are in time (seconds) rather than depth as the tool is stationary (see Fig. 4). The time grids or time lines are comparable to the depth grid on traditional log recordings with each line representing two seconds (rather than two feet) when English depth measurements are used. Pressures are recorded as an analog trace in Track I, providing a quick-look profile of packoff effectiveness and

permeability indication. Tracks II and III are divided into half-track digital scales of pressure (1000’s, 100’s, 10’s, units), providing for a more accurate reading of the recorded pressures. Hydraulic pressure may also be presented in Track I (dashed trace) to help identify the various stages in the tool’s set and retract cycles. Pressure listings are also available. Temperature may also be presented in Track I when the series 1966 electronics is run.



SET ,PACKER I---.\ \ 1



....... ....... ....... ....... ....... .......


t = 8 set
IO set

............... ............... ............... ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... ....................



FIGURE 4 Example of pretest pressure recording.

At each designated test depth, operational practice includes both a before and after recording of hydrostatic mud pressure, i. e., before actuating and after retracting the hydraulic packoff section (see Fig. 4). The FMT has an internal motor, pump, and hydraulic system which are used in actuating and retracting of the packoff section. Hydraulically activated setting pistons cause a rubber donut-shaped packer element to press tightly against the borehole wall. A special nitrile rubber, which is sulphur cured, with peroxide-cured o-rings, is available for use in H2S environments. Hydraulic pressure is recorded at the surface, indicating proper (or improper) setting of the tool. The tool mandrel is held away from the borehole wall to reduce the possibility of differential sticking. A snorkel tube is then forced into, or pressed tightly against, the formation. This is followed by the movement of a small piston, called the pretest piston, allowing 10 cm3 of formation fluid to enter the pretest chamber at a more or less constant flow rate. The effect of this volume extraction on the formation pressure is observed and recorded at the surface (see Fig. 4). A 5-cm3 plug is available for use in wells where extremely tight formations are expected. At this point the logging engineer must be patient and allow the pressure to build up adequately to formation shut-in pressure (see Fig. 4). It is essential that shut-in pressure be recorded as long after the flowing portion of the pretest as possible in order to allow the buildup to approach actual formation pressure. If the pressure test is terminated too early, the shut-in pressure reading will be too low since sufficient buildup did not occur. Early termination of the pretest will also prevent later use of spherical and/or cylindrical model analysis. Pretest shut-in pressure is often referred to as initial shutin pressure. The tool is then (1) retracted prior to moving the tool, or (2) a sample valve is opened to allow formation fluid to flow into a sample chamber. In either of these cases the tool is ultimately retracted, at which time an equalizing valve is opened and the pretest fluid is expelled from the tool. A system schematic is shown in Fig. 5. Operation of the pretest piston and the concurrent measurement of pressure are the keystones to determination of formation pressure and inferences of permeability. Formation fluid enters the tool through the probe during the pretest. As the probe is pressed against the face of the formation (it may even penetrate softer, unconsolidated rock) it also defines the area of flow from the formation as well as eliminating lateral mud cake entry into the tool. A schematic of the probe in both the retract and set position is given in Fig. 6. A sleeve, inserted in the probe, is slotted to function as a filter. The slits are 0.015 in. wide to prevent any debris larger than the slits

from entering the tool. The sleeve is easily removed at the surface for cleaning between runs.









FIGURE 5 Schematic of FMT system.

FIGURE 6 Schematic of the FMT probe in both the retract (upper) and set (lower) positions.

If the pretest data indicates adequate conditions for fluid sampling of the formation, a sample valve may be opened. As many as two fluid samples may be recovered per descent into the wellbore. These samples may be taken at the same depth or at different depths. If both sample chambers are filled at the same set depth, they will be segregated from one another.
Atlas Wireline Services has developed a unique Variable Pressure Control (VPC) system for use with the FMT


The VPC is a variable orifice valve located upstream from the sample tank valve. Both valves are closed when no sample is being taken. To obtain a sample, the tank valve is opened first, followed by the variable orifice valve. The variable orifice valve is controlled from the surface and is opened only until a suitable flowing pressure is attained. The VPC avoids excessive pressure differentials and samples are obtained successfully without guesswork. This feature also prevents formation plugging in unconsolidated sands. The logging engineer can adjust the VPC to pressure increments as small as 5 to 10 psi. Samples can be obtained without damage or plugging from formation collapse. In addition, samples can also be taken above bubble point pressure, thereby eliminating non-representative gas/oil ratios caused by the effects of relative permeability. Testing at multiple flow rates and multiple drawdown pressures may be useful in evaluating formation mechanical properties relating to sand control and consolidation. An analog pressure record showing VPC sampling at three different flow rates is shown in Fig. 7. Segregated sampling at the same set depth usually involves filling the larger sample chamber first, the idea being to drain the flushed zone (mud filtrate) as much as possible. The second sample chamber is then ideally filled with representative reservoir fluids. The tank valves in the VPC-FMT system can be opened and closed as often as required. This feature allows the logging engineer to check for plugging and enables him to reuse the first sample tank in the event of an early packoff failure during segregated fluid sampling. After a sample chamber is filled, the sample valve is closed by a spring and kept closed because of the balanced seal design, thereby sealing the fluid in the sample chamber at formation pressure. The pressure transducer transmits the final shut-in pressure to the surface where it is recorded. A film record of the pretest and sampling steps is illustrated in Fig. 8. After completion of the sampling, the hydraulic system pressure is released and hydraulic pressure reversed in order to retract the packer and backup shoes from the
I -----me


Analog pressure record showing VPC sampling at three different flow rates.

face of the formation. As with a standard pretest, hydrostatic pressure is again recorded to provide a verification of transducer stability, repeatability, and reliability. Hydrostatic pressures recorded before and after tool setting should read within +l psi of one another (assuming no change in the mud column) (see Fig. 8). After the FMT tool and sealed samples are returned to the surface, apressureregulator, separator, andgasmeter are used to extract the samples individually. Recovered gas is bled from the sample chamber through the separator and measured by the gas meter (in ft3 at surface conditions). Water and oil are drawn off in the separator and then poured into a calibrated vessel where their volumes are measured in cm3. When H,S is suspected in the sample, the gas is bubbled through an



~ I~i’-i~~~ :i_ : : :
FIGURE 8. Film record of pretest and sampling steps.


H,S scavenging bottle to remove the H,S. The remaining gas is vented into the atmosphere. Recovered water is routinely tested for chloride concentration and any recovered oil is measured in terms of ‘API gravity. An example of a sample evaluation is shown in Fig. 9. Further analysis, if needed, can be made in the laboratory. If an undisturbed sample is required for laboratory analysis, a breakoff tank can be utilized. The breakoff tank is a 4-liter capacity high-pressure tank which can be detached from the FMT at the surface without bleeding off any pressure or fluids. The breakoff tank meets U. S. Department of Transportation safety standards for transport by any common carrier. CALIBRATIONS Strain Gauge The routine shop calibration of FMT strain gauges is essential to obtaining accurate pressure measurements in the borehole environment. These routine checks should be performed within a 30-day period and are analogous to shop calibrations performed on other

logging tools in that they provide a basis for correcting strain gauge measurements for temperature effects encountered in the borehole environment. A high-quality deadweight tester is used. A calibration test strip is shown in Fig. 10.

FIGURE 10 Calibration test strip for the FMT strain gauge.

TEST NUMBER 3 Depth 2588.0

-0RMATION and MUD DATA Formation Porosity

Test Type: 0 Open Hole 0 Cased Hole
TOOL DATA Tool Type Probe Type Sample Unit Size Flow Control Tool Number 1965 DUAL PASSAGE 3550 OPEN 71577


% Source
zi “C “C

Source of Rw cm3

NaCl (Chart) Water Saturation
Rmf 1.55

ppm; Cl (Titrated)
ii? 20


Source of Rmf NaCl (Chart)

ppm; Cl (Titrated)


PRESSURE DATA Initial Shut in Build Up Time Sampling Range Sampling Time Final Shut in Final Shut in Time Hydrostatic Surface Chamber INTERPRETATION Remarks

24170 0.1 400 - 10000 3.75 24110 6 29510 7067

kPa min kPa min kPa min kPa kPa

RECOVERY INFORMATION 0.0127 Gas Distillate 200 Oil GOR 2950 W ater NaCl (Chart) Mud Formation Water

ms cm3 APl/15.5”( cm3~APl/15.5”( Cm3; Res ppm; Cl (Titrated) cm3; Sand % 0.18 18 0~ wm


May be Expected At This Depth.


Typical sample evaluation.


The Atlas FMT is electrically calibrated prior to being lowered into the well. The wellsite calibration method uses deadweight tester data and temperature corrections determined in the laboratory on the strain gauge pressure recordings. The calibration process is repeated on each survey to ensure that proper response is maintained. The wellsite calibrations also verify the reestablishment of the shop calibration response.
Quartz Gauge

errors of 100 psia for standard H-P gauges. Selected Atlas modified H-P gauges will have a maximum error of 20 psia under the same conditions and will read within ?5 psia within 2 minutes of the temperature change. The accuracy will be within +2 psia when the rate of temperature change is less than 0.5 OF per minute.

The Hewlett-Packard quartz gauges are accurately calibrated by the manufacturer. These gauges are more accurate than the deadweight testers used to field calibrate strain gauges, therefore a field calibration is not required. However, it is important that periodic shop comparisons with a deadweight checker be made to ensure/verify stable quartz response with time. Quartz gauges do require significant temperature correction and Atlas’ H-P probes are modified to measure the temperature of the most temperature-sensitive component in this gauge.
High-precision quartz gauges are typically used when studies of formation pressures require the utmost accuracy These gauges typically have an accuracy as

The curve character of the pretest analog recording of pressures is affected by the pretest and sampling sequences. A schematic illustrating flow during pretest is shown in Fig. 11A. The analog pressure recording for a typical test is shown in Fig. 11B. The setting of the tool begins on the left of both figures with time increasing to the right. At the left of Fig. llB, hydrostatic pressure is recorded but when the equalizing valve is closed, the rubber packer engages and is pressed against the mud cake. A hydraulic seal is likely to occur before the packer and mud cake are fully compressed, therefore the pressure in the tool flow line is often observed to momentarily build up slightly above hydrostatic pressure. The pretest piston is then drawn back, allowing 10 cm3 of formation fluid to enter the pretest chamber at a constant rate as shown in Fig. 11A. The end of the flowing or drawdown phase is indicated at time tl in Figs. 11A and 11B. As the piston motion ceases, flow stops and the pressure builds up to formation pressure as shown on the right side of Fig. 11B. When the tool is retracted, the drawdown piston is reset thereby purging the pretest fluid into the wellbore, and the equalizer valve is opened allowing the pressure to return to hydrostatic. The difference between flowing (drawdown) pressure and shut-in pressure is AP and the time necessary for flow to stop from the beginning of the drawdown is referred to as At. Both AP and At are illustrated in Fig. 11B. These values of AP and At are used to determine permeability from the drawdown. A pressure record of the FMT internal hydraulic system during the pretest sequence is illustrated in Fig. 11C. The steps indicated are (1) the closing of the equalizing valve, (2) the packer engagement, (3) the pretest piston movement, and (4) the completion of the pretest piston movement. This internal pressure record is important for monitoring tool performance and is usually recorded as a dashed trace in Track I (see Fig. 4). Furthermore, this measurement is not used directly in the evaluation of formation pressure data. During pretest, flow, shut in, and the stopping of the pretest piston will coincide only if formation permeability is adequate to allow the formation fluids to flow fast enough to fill the volume created during the move-


If temperature is known to l°C accuracy, f 0.025% of pressure reading. If temperature is known to 10°C accuracy, + 0.1% of pressure reading. If temperature is known to 20°C accuracy, + 0.25% of pressure reading.



The temperature is accurate within + 5’F (+ 3OC). Quartz gauges also provide good repeatability (+ 0.5 psia) and a large amount of pressure data. Their single limitation is the time factor necessary for stabilization before measuring true pressure, i. e., several minutes may be required before reaching stabilization. It is also necessary to depth-correct pressures read from the quartz gauge to a pressure reference level due to the fact that the quartz gauge is physically located lower than the strain gauge on the tool string. The quartz gauge consists of two crystal oscillators, both being sensitive to temperature and pressure. However, one crystal performs as a sensor of fluid pressure and temperature while the other crystal is used as a reference to provide frequencies suitable for transmitting on wirelines. They are calibrated as a pair and both must have the same temperature for equilibrium pressure. Temperature changes of a few OF per minute can cause

Aq A













FIGURE 11 Schematic illustration of flow during pretest.

FIGURE 12 Typical analog pressure record in a low permeability formation.

ment of the pretest piston. If formation permeability is too low, the pretest piston will cause the pressure to drop below the bubble point and multiphase flow may occur at the tool/formation interface. Although the piston has completed its stroke, the formation will continue to trickle fluid into the tool until 10 cm3 has flowed. A typical analog pressure record under these conditions is illustrated in Fig. 12A, B, and C. Observed pressures will eventually build up to formation pressure if sufficient time is allowed. An example of a long duration pretest is shown in Fig. 13. The effects of formation permeability in the vicinity of the FMT probe on the pretest pressure record are illustrated in Figs. 14A, B, C, D and E. These comprise a family of typical FMT pretest pressure analog records for permeabilities varying in order of magnitude increments from 100 md to 0.1 md to tight. Note that the flowing time increases between 10 md and 1 md, indicating that the formation permeability is sufficiently low so that it cannot flow fast enough to fill the volume displaced by the pretest piston. The illustrations in Fig. 14 are intended only as guidelines since the actual permeability depends on the drawdown from formation pressure, flow rate, and nature of fluid. Other factors often affect the character and quality of the pretest pressure record. Debris drawn into the drawdown line during pretest may cause plugging and 9

in extreme cases prevent 10 cm3 being drawn into the tool. In Fig. 15A, light plugging is indicated by a rough, irregular response during the drawdown or flowing period. Severe plugging, if it occurs immediately upon drawdown, is virtually indistinguishable from a tight test (compare Figs. 15B and 14E). The presence of gas in the flowline causes the abrupt changes in pressure to occur more gradually due to gas compression and expansion as shown in Fig. 16A. If the packer is set on a tight formation, the effect of pretest is to expand the gas in the flowline by 10 cm3 and reduce its pressure to some nonzero constant value as shown in Fig. 16B. In either case, gas may be eliminated from the flowline by opening the sample chamber when set against a tight formation. This procedure in effect allows the gas to distribute itself over the small flowline and much larger sample volume, thereby allowing it to be captured in the sample jug (this procedure cannot be done with all tools without wasting the sample test). Seal failure is caused by the inability of the rubber packer to isolate the probe flow channel from the mud column and may occur at any time during the pretest sequence. Figure 17A illustrates a catastrophic seal failure such as might occur in a washout or highly rugose hole. The pretest pressure record remains at hydrostatic even though the pretest piston goes through its cycle. In Fig. 17B, a relatively low permeability is indicated; however, upon closer inspection the final formation pressure and


FIGURE 13 A long duration pretest.






FIGURE 14 Family of typical analog pretest pressure records for different permeability ranges.

FIGURE 15 Analog pretest pressure recordings for (A) irregular light plugging and (B) severe plugging.


FIGURE 16 Examples of (A) gas compression/expansion in the flowline and (B) tight gas zone, where gas expands to 10 cm3 in the flowline.

I I 1 B


FIGURE 17 Example of (A) catastrophic seal failure and (B) case where apparent formation shut in pressure is suspiciously similar to hydrostatic pressure.


initial hydrostatic pressure are nearly identical. These situations should be viewed very carefully since either a seal failure has occurred or virtually no overbalance exists with respect to the formation. The latter situation may indicate the need to weight up the mud as the well may be near blowout conditions. Measurements of these types should be repeated to determine which situation exists so that appropriate action can be taken. The FMT presentation includes both analog recordings of the pretest pressure record and the internal FMT hydraulic pressure. Both are recorded in the left-hand track (see Fig. 18). Where greater accuracy and resolution are required, four digital tracks are placed to the

right of the depth track as shown in Fig. 18. The recorder steps the pressure data in digital increments of 1000, 100, 10 and 1 psi from the track nearest the depth track and then to the right. For example, at time 80 sec. in Fig. 18, the digital record indicates a formation pressure of 3927 psi and still building up slightly. It is apparent that resolution in this case is 1 psi. This example is an FMT measurement with the strain gauge. The HewlettPackard gauge is designed to improve the resolution to 0.1 psi and the 1000 must be read from the analog (Track I) data with 100, 10, 1, and 0.1 values read from the digital track. All pressure data (temperature corrected and uncorrected) is recorded on magnetic tape and may be retained for later processing.

- - - - - - -PUMP- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - PRESSURE



................ . ..... ........ ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. ................. .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... ..................... .................. .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... ..... ....... ........

............... ............... ...............

FIGURE 18 Analog pressures allow a quick qualitative reference. The digital pressure record provides greater accuracy and resolution for quantification of pressure data.



In conjunction with quantitative well log evaluations, the fluid samples and pressure data obtained from the FMT can be used to estimate formation pressures, permeabilities, hydrocarbon production rates, and depths of oil/water, gas/oil, and gas/water contacts. The samples recovered also supply information on the type of formation fluids, gravity of oil, water cut, and gas/oil ratio. FMT data interpretation involves considerations of fluid pressure behavior and other physical properties of formation fluids such as density, resistivity, and viscosity. The pore space of reservoir rocks may contain water, oil, and gas as a single phase or in any combination of these fluids. It is imperative that these properties of reservoir fluids be known or reasonably approximated in order to reliably evaluate the production characteristics of the reservoir rocks.
Density or Specific Gravity

increasing temperature but increases with higher total solid concentration and pressure. The effect of pressure on the density of water is comparatively little, as can be seen on the chart in Fig. 19 which can be used to determine the density of water. Alternatively, if density at a certain temperature and pressure is known, total dissolved solids or chlorinity (in ppm) can be read from the chart. Specific gravity of oil is related to its API gravity by the relation 141.5 Yo = OAP1 + 131.5 (1)

Density of water depends upon its salt content, temperature, and pressure. The specific gravity of a substance is the ratio of its density to that of water at specified temperatures. Density of water decreases with

where y0 is the specific gravity of oil at 60°F referred to that of water at 60’F. When dissolved gas is present in oil, the specific gravity of the latter depends upon the gas/oil ratio, decreasing as the gas/oil ratio increases. Figure 20 can be used for determining reservoir density of oil in g/cm3 for a known value of GOR. Figure 21 shows the variation of specific gravity of oils with temperature while dry gas density, as a function of reservoir pressure and temperature, is illustrated in Fig. 22.










TdTAL DI’SSOLVED SOLIDS ;20 1 , ppm I IO’ 1 , ,,


280 , 160

240 I I

,“A \,-t”.\rb”\l\,







= 175 OF

FIGURE 19 Chart for determination of water density.



1600 1800 2000





FIGURE 20 Chart for determination of reservoir density of oil.

C,H, = Ethane C,H. = Propane Cal,,, = Butane IC.H.., = lsobutana

FIGURE 21 Gravity-temperature



and atmospheric pressure) to the viscosity of gassaturated oil for the known GOR at reservoir conditions.

Viscosity of natural gas depends upon its gravity with respect to air at standard conditions. Effects of temperature and pressure on the viscosity for natural gases, ranging in gravity from 0.6 to 1 .O, may be approximated by use of Fig. 27.

FIGURE 22 Density of dry gas vs. temperature and pressure.

Resistivity All porous rocks contain some water. By virtue of ionized salts contained in solution, these formation waters are electrically conductive but may exhibit resistivities ranging from 0.01 ohm-meter to several ohm-meters. The predominant salt in these solutions is sodium chloride. Resistivity of such an electrolyte decreases with increasing salt concentration (due to the higher concentration of ions, which carry electric charges) and higher temperature (which increases the mobility of those ions). Resistivity of formation water may be determined by direct resistivity measurement on a sample, chemical analysis, or an estimation of equivalent NaCl (in ppm) from well logs. The nomograph in Fig. 23 shows the resistivity of a brine solution as a function of temperature and equivalent NaCl concentration. Viscosity Viscosity of a fluid is a measure of its resistance to flow. The lower the viscosity of a fluid, the more readily it flows. Viscosity of water decreases with increasing temperature just like honey thins on warming. Water viscosity also depends upon salinity. These variations due to

temperature and salinity are shown graphically in Fig. 24. Changes in water viscosity are significant when determining permeability from drawdown. The effect of
pressure on the viscosity of water is negligible. Viscosity of gas-free crude oil also decreases with temperature (Fig. 25). From a knowledge of crude oil ‘API gravity and formation temperature, the viscosity of gas-free crude oil can be determined (Beal, 1946). The amount of gas dissolved in oil has an important bearing on viscosity at reservoir conditions. Figure 26 is used to correct the viscosity of dead oil (at reservoir temperature 16

Nomograph for determination of resistivity or salinity of brine solutions.


I 100

I 150

I 200

I 250

I 300

I 350

I 400



FIGURE 24 Water viscosity vs. temperature and salinity (in ppm NaCl equivalent).

4000 - \ 2000 - \

600 j \ 400 -\ \ I\\ 2oo \\ \

\ t \ \ 1
-5 \ \ t \

100 -&
60: \' 40- \ 20 -

10 7
6: 42-

1.0 7
0.6 :: 0.4 0.2 -



0.1 ..ILL 10 CRUDE OIL GRAVITY OAP1 AT 60°F AND ATMOSPHERIC PRESSURE FIGURE 25 Viscosity of gas-free crude oils.





FIGURE 26 Viscosity of gas-saturated crude oils.


0.050 -


0.040 -

0.030 c v c i7 8 0.020 5

0.030 a^ 0 E 2 2 0.020 \ I \ I


0.010 0


300 200 TEMPERATURE (“F) la\ 1-1





iE‘ 0 c z 8 0.020 ” > I -

0.010 0 100 200 300 TEMPERATURE (“F) Cc) 400 500 TEMPERATURE (“F) Cd)

FIGURE 27 Charts for determining viscosity of natural gas.



bility of the FMT has tremendously improved the ability to determineif an adequatepacker seal and sufficientlypermeable zone are present prior to opening a sampie chamber. The FMT is also capable of gathering two

The original purpose of wireline formation tests was to provide a means to obtain a sample of formation fluid and bring it to the surface. The multi-set pretest capa-

samples per descent into the wellbore. Several different sizes (capacity) and combinations of sample chambers are available (see Table 1). With the FMT, the percentage of successful fluid recoveries has shown tremendous improvement and rig time has been reduced. The ability to acquire segregated samples from the same zone improves the chance of acquiring representative reservoir fluids.

Length Without Sample Chambers (sample chambers lengthen the distance below the packer, e. g., two ten-liter tanks and H-P gauge would provide a distance of 34.5 ft) W eight, Overall Without W ater Cushion Maximum Tool Diameter, Retracted 18 ft 4 in. (w/o temp & H-P gauges) 19 ft 4 in. (wltemp & H-P gauges) Packer is set 5 ft 5 in. above the bottom of the tool w/o sample tanks; 9 ft w/H-P gauge 5.59 m (w/o temp & H-P gauges) 5.89 m (wltemp & H-P gauges) Packer is set 1.65 m above the bottom of the tool w/o sample tanks; 2.74 m w/H-P gauge

982 lb

445 kg

5.125 6.125 7.875 9.188

in., in., in., in.,

w/slim hole pad w/standard pad w/16 in. extension kit w/20 in. extension kit

13 cm, w/slim hole pad 15.56 cm, w/standard pad 20 cm, w/16 in. extension kit 23.34 cm, w/20 in. extension kit 30.48 cm 40.64 cm or 50.8 cm available with extension kits 103,350 kPa (137,800 kPa w/specially equipped tool 177oc (218’C w/specially equipped tool) 10 cm3 (5 cm3 plug is available)

Maximum Hole Diameter

12.0 in., w/standard pad 16.0 in. or 20 in. available with extension kits 15,000 psi (20,000 w/specially equipped tool) 350° F (425°F w/specially equipped tool) 10 cm3 (5 cm3 plug is available)

Maximum Pressure Rating

Maximum Rating


Pretest Chamber Fluid Capacity Sample Chambers, Fluid Capacities (water cushions are available) Strain Gauge Accuracy Without templpressure correction With templpresssure correction Resolution Hewlett-Packard Quartz Gauge Accuracy with temperature correction Resolution Repeatability Accuracy at thermal equilibrium

1.06, 2.64, and 5.28 gal tanks are standard (other tank sizes are available in some specific geographical areas)

4, 10, and 20 liter tanks are standard (other tank sizes are available in some specific geographical areas)

+ 0.8% +0.13% -+l.O psi

* 0.8% +0.13% k6.89 kPa

kO.1 psi r0.4 psi (+ 1 .O psi + 0.1% of pressure reading)

f 0.6894 kPa k2.76 kPa (k6.89 kPa + 0.1% of pressure reading)

In addition to identifying the production potential of targeted reservoirs, sampling is also an effective means of identifying fresh water aquifers. Drilling fluids are typically more saline than potable waters. The resistivity of the recovered fluid (Rrr), if some percentage of formation fluid is obtained, can provide the fingerprint defining such potential water supplies. Regulatory agencies are interested in identifying such aquifers so as to make assurances that the water-bearing zones are adequately isolated from any potential contamination. Segregated samples, taken at the same packer setting, often provide some uncontaminated formation water. Sampling has also been used effectively to pinpoint gas/oil, gas/water, and oil/water contacts in highpermeability, high-porosity reservoirs.
Variable Pressure Control (VPC) Atlas Wireline Services’ unique Variable Pressure Control (VPC) allows for better sampling of unconsolidated formations where excessive drawdown or excessive flow rate might cause formation collapse, resulting in seal failure, toolplugging, or formation plugging. Earlier ver-

tanks can be filled at one set depth and segregated from one another. The premise is that the first tank will drain

off most of the invaded filtrate from the flushed zone surrounding the packoff and the subsequent sample obtained in the second chamber will be more representative of native formation fluids.
Estimating Sampling Time

Another advantage of the multi-set capability is that the
pretest pressure data allows for a quick approximation of the time required to fill a sample chamber. The longer

the tool sets stationary and packed off to the formation, the greater becomes the risk of sticking the tool. For this reason it is significant to know how much time will be involved in filling a sample tank. An estimate of the time period (in minutes) required to fill a one-gallon sample chamber can be made from the following:
t = 63.1 (AP,,~) (2)

qpt (AP,) where:

sions of FMT tools used a flow line restrictor or water cushion to combat the problem of excessive drawdowns and excessive flow rates. The flow line restrictor was placed in the flow line upstream from the sample chamber to limit excessive flow. Water cushions were used to accomplish the same effect by causing the fluid filling the sample tank to displace a piston which pushed water through an orifice into an air-filled chamber. The flow rate was controlled by installing an appropriate sized orifice prior to the job. The VPC is located upstream from the sample tank valve and has a variable orifice. Both VPC and sample tank valves are closed when no samples are being taken. When a sample is desired, the tank valve is opened first followed by the opening of the variable orifice valve, which is controlled from the surface. Once opened, the variable orifice responds to pressure in the sample line by slightly opening or closing to maintain a constant pressure. Excessive packer differentials are avoided and samples can be successfully retrieved without guesswork. The VPC also permits sample retrieval from zones which are above bubble point pressure, eliminating npnrepresentative gas/oil ratios caused by the effects of relative permeability.
Segregated Samples

= time required to flow one gallon, in minutes

Appt = drawdown during pretest (P formation - Pflowing), psi APS

= drawdown during sampling (P formation - Pflowing), psi = flow rate during pretest (chamber size/time to fill), cm3/sec 3785 cm3/gal 60 sec/min

63.1 = conversion factor =

Equation 2 is a simple extrapolation of flow during pretest vs. flow during sampling. When sampling is performed without a flow line restrictor or water cushion, the sampling flowing pressure is typically very low and


= Pf


where pf = formation pressure. The time estimate equation only approximates sampling time because other factors (e. g., relative permeability, flowing pressure, turbulence, debris, plugging, etc.) will influence the flow rate into the FMT. If samples 21

In tight, invaded formations it is often difficult to obtain a sample which is representative of formation fluids.
The two-chamber capability of the FMT improves the chance of obtaining a representative sample since both

larger than one gallon are to be retrieved, the time estimate derived from Eq. 2 is simply multiplied by the difference in chamber size (in gallons). For example, a 2.75gallon tank would take 2.75 times the value calculated in the equation. Example A log of a pretest followed by a sample test is given in Fig. 28. The flow rate (q) is determined to be 10 cm3/4 set, or 2.5 cm3/sec. The pressure drawdown during pretest is the difference between the shut-in and flowing pressures, which is indicated to be
ap*t = 2263 psi - 2215 psi = 48 psi

minigal. Following the pretest, a 2.56-gal (9700-cm3) sample was retrieved in 1.47 min for an actual flow rate of 0.57 min/gal. If a VPC tool had been used and flowing pressure was adjusted to 2000 psi, the expected rate would be 4.61 min/gal and the retrieval of a 2.56gal sample would have taken 11.8 minutes. By using the VPC, sampling would have taken a few minutes longer but the danger of formation collapse, erroneous gas/oil ratio, and/or debris plugging of the flow lines would be lessened. The ability to predetermine a sampling time provides the responsibleperson at the surface with information which helps him to decide whether to chance sampling that particular zone or to move the tool and find a more permeable depth to sample. The time sampling estimate also helps thelogging engineer make a judgment on the proper VPC pressure setting to utilize.

If the sample was recovered without a flow line restrictor or water cushion, the flow rate is estimated to be 0.54

FIGURE 28 Recording of pretest pressures followed by sample pressures.

EVALUATING RECOVERED FLUID SAMPLES Fluids recovered in the sample tank are mud filtrate, native formation fluids, or a mixture of the two. Recovered mud filtrate is not representative of formation fluid. Recovered formation fluids are presumed to flow into the sample chamber in the same proportions of gas, oil, and water as they would in production of the zone. The quantity of recovered fluid is a function of time, fluid viscosity, and pressure in addition to permeability. Quick chamber fillups occur in high permeability formations; however, sample chamber fillup can occur in tight formations if sufficient time is allowed. Therefore, the amount of fluid recovery is not diagnostic of permeability. Fluid recovery in excess of 1000 cm3 is sufficient to allow realistic estimates of:
l l

mud filtrate vs. formation water, per cent water cut, and gas solubility in water and/or oil Viscosity of recovered fluids

Samples recovered may be substantially formation fluid, substantially mud filtrate, or any mixture in between. Several methods have been developed to evaluate these differing conditions. When Sample Recovery is Primary Native Formation Fluids When a relatively large fraction of the sample volume is native formation fluid, the empirical chart of Fig. 29 may be used to predict the production from the formation. This chart was developed for porosities greater than about 25 5’0 and shallow filtrate invasion. The volume of recovered gas at surface conditions (in ft3) and recovered oil (in cm3) is all that is required to utilize the chart. This chart was prepared for a one-gallon chamber, therefore all values of recovered volumes must be divided by the sample chamber size used (in gallons) to normalize the

Gas/fluid ratio, i. e., gas/oil ratio (GOR) and gas/water ratio (GWR) Production prediction, i. e., hydrocarbon vs. water,



GAS-OIL RATIO/ (ft3/bbl)







FIGURE 29 Empirical interpretation chart for l-gallon sample tank size and high-permeability formations.


recovery to a volume-per-gallon basis. The chart given as Fig. 30 was prepared for a 2.75gallon chamber. These two charts were empirically derived from a large number of tests carried out by Shell Oil Company. The charts have been found to yield realistic estimates when the sum of recovered volumes (converted to subsurface temperature and pressure) is not appreciably less than the volume of the sample chamber.

The recovered fluids in a l0-liter (2.64-gallon) sample are 4.0 ft3 of gas at surface conditions and 1550 cm3 of oil and 8000 cm3 of water (both filtrate and formation water). The recovery data must first be normalized to a volume-per-gallon basis, so the recovery becomes Gas Recovery = - = 1.52 ft3 per gallon
2.64 4.0

Entering the above oil and gas recovery data on Fig. 29, the data point falls clearly in the oil zone. Hence, oil production is predicted with a gas/oil ratio of 410 ft3 per barrel of oil. In this case the formation shut-in pressure (SIP) is 2800 psi. Since the data point falls well above and to the right of the 2800 psi shut-in pressure (SIP) line, no water production is predicted with the oil. If the data point had fallen below the SIP curve, water production would have been predicted. An indication of water production should not necessarily condemn a zone since these empirical charts (Figs. 29 & 30) have a tendency to be pessimistic. Any use of these charts should always be supplemented with other information on the tested zone. Gas/oil ratio anticipated in production may be estimated without the use of Fig. 29 by the following equation: GOR = Gas Recovery (ft3) Oil Recovery (cm3) x 159,000

1550 Oil Recovery = - = 587 cm3 per gallon
2.64 8000 2.64

Water Recovery = - = 3030 cm3 per gallon

The recovery used in Eq. 4 does not have to be normalized to a per-gallon basis. Measured values can be used directly regardless of sample tank size. This equation plots as the straight lines of gas/oil ratio (GOR) in Figs. 29 and 30.


FIGURE 30 Empirical interpretation chart for 2%-gallon sample tank size and high-permeability formations.


Prediction of Water Cut
ff,(~O> =

%.v %nf - Rrf)

x 100


A prediction of the potential water cut may also be made from the recovered fluids. A nomogram given as Fig. 31 can be used to predict water cut. Water cut prediction can also be determined from the following equation:
Water Cut (070) = Formation Water Recovery (cm3) Formation Water Recovery (cn?) + Oil Recovery (cm3) (5)

Rrf %lf - &v)



fraction of formation water in the FMT sample, (070) resistivity of formation water resistivity of mud filtrate


= resistivity of recovered fluid = =

Recovered water is typically comprised of both filtrate and formation water. The filtrate must be deducted from the total water recovery prior to using Eq. 5. The fraction of formation water in the recovered sample can be found from the following equation:

R, Rm f

The necessary resistivity information is obtained as follows. First, measurements of the recovered water

100 80 60

10 8 6





5 6











-200 -180 -160 -140 -120 -100 - 8 0 - 6 0 - 4 0 - 2 0 c : : : : : ! ! : : : : : ! : : : : : :

0 1

FIGURE 31 Nomogram for estimation of percent water recovered.


should be checked with logs and mud company reports when their reliability is questioned. Fourth, all resistivities must be adjusted to the same temperature for determination of the fraction of formation water recovered. This is accomplished by using the chart shown

resistivity are made by either resistivity cell or titration methods, with the latter being more accurate. Second, formation water resistivity, R,, is determined from well logs W, R,,, etc.), produced water samples from offset wells, water catalogs, etc. Third, the mud filtrate resistivity, R,,, must be determined, again by resistivity cell or titration. A word of caution when determining R,, is in order, however. R,, values are often observed to be too low, sometimes less than the resistivity of the recovered fluid, R,,. This may result from conditioning the mud prior to logging or by an ion exchange mechanism. In any case, the values used for Rmfand R,

fluorescence tests, may be significant. Detection of gas may also be important provided the gas is free gas and not solution gas associated with formation water (see the following section). As a rule of thumb, if less than lo-15% of the water recovered is formation water and only a small volume or trace of oil is present, the formation is predicted to produce water-free. A high water cut would be predicted if larger amounts (>15%) of formation water are recovered. Easy recovery of filtrate is indicative of a permeable formation. This factor, coupled with indications of hydrocarbons from openhole logs (even though only filtrate is recovered in the sample tank) may indicate the zone to be a candidate for well completion. The FMT measurements verify a permeable zone which can be productive if hydrocarbons (indicated from other information) are present. Technique For Various Size Recoveries

in Fig. 23 or the following equation (ARPS) for NaCl solutions:

for OF (7) for OC where
Rl R2


resistivity at temperature, T,

= resistivity at temperature, T,

The following method analyzes the recovered fluids by converting the surface-measured volumes to downhole conditions. It is presumed that the sample which entered the tool at downhole conditions is representative of anticipated production. This interpretive approach attempts to break out the formation water, oil, and free gas, if any, at formation pressure and temperature. Note, however, that small amounts of formation water recovery (<IO-15%) may be caused by mixing of connate and flushing waters and such small formation water recovery may not indicate water cut. A schematic showing the various fluids entering the sample chamber at downhole conditions is given as Fig. 32. When the sample is analyzed at the surface, the character of the sample is altered due to gases coming out of solution with the formation water and oil. Consequently, the gas volume recorded is greater than any free gas which may be present. Furthermore, the loss of gas from solution may cause some change in the volume of oil and water from downhole to surface conditions.

T,,T, = temperature, OF or OC as indicated above The fraction of formation water is calculated using these temperature-corrected values of resistivity. Formation water recovery is then determined by multiplying this calculated fraction, f, (To), times the total volume of water recovery and predicted water cut can be estimated using Eq. 5. Recovery of Small Volumes of Formation Fluid Or No Formation Fluid Recovery of small volumes of formation fluid or no formation fluid results when zones are deeply invaded and recovery is primarily filtrate. This usually occurs in lower porosity formations. Interpretation under these conditions is inconclusive at best. When deep invasion occurs, flushing of the formation is usually not complete. The recovered sample, even though apparently all water, must therefore be examined very carefully for traces of hydrocarbons. Any hydrocarbon present, even if only detectable through 26

The analysis is based on the following steps:
Step 1: Computation of Filtrate Volume

To compute the filtrate volume, first determine the fraction of formation water, f, (vo), in the total water recovery, a technique discussed earlier. The fraction, I-ffw (olo), equals the fraction of filtrate which, when multiplied by the recovered water volume, equals the volume of filtrate. V, (cm3) = (l-fr,) (Yo) x W, (cm3)

Step 3: Computation of Gas in Oil The oil within a formation is either above or below bubble point pressure. If the pressure at which the oil is found is above bubble point pressure, it contains the greatest possible volume of gas in solution. If bubble point pressure is less than the pressure of the oil in the formation, then free gas cannot be present in the oil and gas will not be produced. Hence, free gas is only produced if the oil is below bubble point. To compute the volume of solution gas evolving from the recovered oil, utilize the chart shown in Fig. 35. Enter downhole formation pressure at the right side of the chart. Proceed upward to the formation temperature, then left to the OAP1 gravity of the recovered oil. From this juncture, move upward to the gas gravity and then left to the gas/oil ratio (GOR). Note that this GOR value is in ft3 per barrel. To determine the volume of gas liberated from the recovered oil, vosg et31 =

GOR (ft3/bbl) x V, (cm3) 159,000


FIGURE 32 Schematic illustrating the differences between downhole and surface conditions.

If this volume of gas is greater than the volume of gas remaining after completion of Step 2, then free gas is present and free gas production is expected with the oil. If this volume is less than or equal to the gas remaining after Step 2, then liquid oil production with no free gas is expected downhole.

The formation water recovered is then Vfw (cm3) = W, (cm3) - V, (cm3) Step 2: Computation of Gas Soluble in Water Figure 33 is a chart which indicates the solubility of natural gas in water, measured in ft3 of gas at the surface per 1000 cm3 of water. To use this chart, enter downhole formation pressure and temperature, and read solubility (S,) as indicated. This solubility value must be corrected for water salinity, which is accomplished by determining the solubility ratio (SR) from the formation water resistivity and downhole formation temperature using Fig. 34. The volume of solution gas associated with the formation water recovered is then given by Vwsg (ft3) = S, x SR x vf;;;;3)

Flow regimes in reservoir rocks are either steady state or nonsteady state. In steady-state regimes, flow rates and pressures at any level will adjust instantly to a change in flow rate and pressure at another point in the flow regime. When readjustment time is short, the flow regime may also be assumed to be steady state. The snorkel probe of the FMT has a theoretical intake flow response which is similar to a spherical flow model (Fig. 36). The theory implies a situation analogous to a well and pipe string penetrating an infinitely thick porous stratigraphic unit. Four different types of flow geometries are of interest in the analysis of wireline tests. In addition to spherical flow, linear, radial, and hemispherical flow patterns are also considered (Fig. 36). In linear flow, the lines of flow distribution are parallel and the cross-sectional area exposed to the flow is constant. In radial flow, the flow patterns converge two-dimensionally to a central point, e. g., the borehole. In spherical flow, the flow patterns converge three-dimensionally toward a central point, whereas in hemispherical flow, the flow patterns con27


If only water and gas were recovered and the volume calculated is greater than or equal to the gas recovered, no free gas is present and the zone is 100% water productive. Otherwise, subtract the value of water solution gas from the total gas and proceed to step 3.



a 5 s

.09 .08 .07 .06 ‘05

c 3 ;i3i 3 2




10 0 %I
500 psi


Solubility of natural gas in water vs. temperature and pressure.

verge three-dimensionally from one side toward a common center.
Darcy’s Law

In 1856, a French engineer named Henry Darcy (Henri d’Arcy) performed tests on water filters providing the engineering profession with a method to measure and study the ease of fluid flow through porous rock. Dar&s Law of fluid flow states, “the rate of flow through a given rock varies directly according to some numerical quantity and the pressure applied, and varies inversely according to the viscosity of the fluid flowing!’ The numerical

quantity is the permeability (k) and is measured in darcies. Reservoir rocks seldom have permeabilities as great as 1.0 darcy, therefore the usual measure of rock permeability is in millidarcies (md), although reservoirs with several darcies of permeability do exist. Wide variations in rock permeability frequently exist both horizontally and vertically. Permeability may occasionally change by a drastic amount over a short distance in reservoir rock that otherwise appears to be uniform. Horizontal permeability, which is measured parallel to bedding planes, usually exceeds vertical permeability.

’ ““111111

0.6 250’I 1:
0.1 5

0.5 200’ 0.4 150” I

tl I I I I I

.2 .3 .4 .5 .6 1 .7 .8 .9 1.0


.05 .06 .07 .08.09 .l RESISTIVITY


FIGURE 34 Salinity correction for gas solubility in water.


FIGURE 35 Determination of gas/oil ratio at bubble point.


is based upon a quasi-spherical flow model, since the probe size is small relative to reservoir dimensions (Fig. 36). Flow is assumed to be steady state. Fluid entry into the tool is taken as that entering a sphere having a diameter equal to that of the probe.


\I/ -.‘I’

The flow model factor (C) is typically considered a constant, although in reality it may vary from 0.5 for perfectly spherical flow to 1.0 for hemispherical flow. Several methods have been proposed to derive a quantitatively precise value for the C factor; however, the derivations are usually based on controlled conditions in the laboratory, a situation unlike the borehole environment. For practical oilfield use, the C factor for quasispherical flow in an 8-in. borehole is approximated by 0.75. It should be kept in mind that flow into the snorkel probe is through a flat disc (not a hemisphere). A transform is necessary to convert the various measurements in Eq. 11 into common units. The probe diameter transform is recommended to avoid the confusion of radius vs. diameter, a step which quite often creates calculation errors for the user. Considering the above, the simplified equation to estimate permeability from pressure drawdown for FMT work is:


FIGURE 36 Types of flow conditions

The magnitude of rock permeability plays an important role in the ability of a reservoir to produce into a wellbore. This is illustrated by the fact that a reservoir rock 10 ft thick having 1.0 darcy of effective permeability (k,) will permit 150 barrels of oil per day (BOPD) to flow into a wellbore if the pressure in the well is 10 psi below the reservoir pressures. In practical oilfield units, Darcy’s Law is expressed as:

k, = 1842 x C x where k 9 c1 AP C d = permeability (drawdown), md = flow rate, cm3/sec = viscosity of fluid, cp (should be temperature corrected) = pressure drawdown, psi = flow model factor = diameter-of snorkel orifice, in.



k A :p/dL

= = = = =

flow rate, BPD permeability, darcy cross sectional area, ft2 viscosity, cp pressure gradient, psi/ft

Formation permeability may be inferred from FMT pressure records. The basis of such permeability estimates is the pressure drawdown and subsequent buildup phases discussed earlier under FMT operation.

The flow rate (q) is determined from the pretest pressure record and is equal to the pretest fluid volume (usually 10 cm3) divided by the time of flow as indicated on the pretest record. The pressure drawdown (Ap) is the difference between the flowing pressure during the late stages of drawdown and the shut-in formation pressure. Hydrostatic pressure is not relevent to the calculation.
The FMT standard probe has an orifice diameter of 0.562in.; however, other sizes are occasionally used. This

Permeability can be inferred from the flowing drawdown phase of the FMT pretest. The calculated permeability

orifice diameter is the avenue through which fluid flows from the formation into the tool. The viscosity 01) is that of the fluid flowing from the formation into the tool during the pretest. This fluid is usually mud filtrate, typically salt water, and viscosity is commonly assumed at 0.5 cp.
More accurate viscosity should be determined by the

chart in Fig. 24, which illustrates the effects of temperature and salinity on the filtrate viscosity It is of utmost importance that thepretest chamber size, probe diameter, downhole temperature, and salinity of themudfiltrate berecorded on thelogheading. The in-

(2) The next stage is quasi-spherical. The time duration for this quasi-spherical buildup period is a function of bed thickness and formation anisotropy. Vertical permeability (k,) can be computed from the information derived here. (3) Radial flow is the tendency at the later stages of pressure buildup. The flow patterns have a cylindrical symmetry around the borehole axis.
Spherical Pressure Buildup Permeability and Formation Pressure

formation is not only necessary for the foregoing computations, but is important for a review of the data at a later time. The drawdown model for permeability estimation is a very microscopic indicator because the model is affected by the formation within a very few (2 or 3) centimeters from the probe. The inferred permeability is a relative

permeability to the filtrate, which means it is not usually representative of absolute permeability Drawdown permeabilityestimatesare usuallypessimisticsince they are calculated from data related to a region near the wellbore where formation damage is likely to occur.

Another reason for low permeability numbers is that the spherical flow characteristics may be impaired because of shale barriers or reductions in vertical permeability. Reduction of permeability near the borehole is often referred to as “skin effect”, i. e., the zone of reduced permeability being the “skin!’ An example of pretest drawdown permeability computation is provided in Appendix A.
Formation permeability may be inferred from either the pretest pressure record or the pressure record from a sample test. The equation for permeability evaluation is iden-

Following the flowing or drawdown period of the pretest, the flow entering the tool stops and a pressure buildup is observed to occur. At the time the flow ceases, a pressure gradient exists between the FMT snorkel and the undisturbed virgin formation. Following drawdown, flow continues toward the FMT probe, causing a recompression of the fluid in the vicinity of the probe and a rise in pressure back to the original formation pressure. The disturbance propagates spherically into the formation as shown in Fig. 37 and the pressure profile within the formation varies during the buildup period as illustrated in Fig. 38. Since the pressure disturbance associated with the buildup initially propagates spherically, the pressure detected at the FMT probe can be modelled during this period with the spherical buildup equation:

tical for both records but the larger volumetrics of the sample test result in improved calculations. The resolution on pressure recording during sample test drawdown in high-permeability formations is therefore improved substantially. If permeability is 1000 md, the pressure drawdown during pretest would-be about 1 psi whereas it would take about 7 seconds to fill a 2.75-gallon sample chamber.

A number of methods have been described (by various authors) to determine an estimate of undamaged formation permeability by pressure buildup analysis. Drillstem tests (DST) and routine production tests assume flow during buildup to be radial, and reasonably so. The assumption of radial flow is also valid for wireline tests made in very thin beds. However, the FMT buildup pattern in thick beds is as follows: (1) The immediate buildup after drawdown (fill up) is one of linear flow. This very short time span is difficult to observe on FMT buildup plots. 31

FIGURE 37 Schematic illustrating spherical flow.

To evaluate permeability, the foregoing equation may be written:

A plot of

FIGURE 38 Variation of the pressure profile during the buildup period.

on linear-linear graph paper produces a straight line during the spherical buildup period as illustrated in Fig. 39. The slope, m,, in psi/set may be used to evaluate permeability, provided ct and + are known, by the following equations:

P ws = pi - 8.0 where


lo4 ~ 0

= formation pressure, psi = pressure at probe after shut in, psi = flow rate during drawdown, cm3/sec = viscosity of formation fluid, cp = compressibility of formation fluid, psi-’ = permeability of formation (spherical), md = porosity of formation, fraction = length of pretest flowing time, set = time elapsed after shut in, set

P ws 9 P ct

+ t At

While the foregoing equation assumes an infinite, homogeneous formation, it may be applied before any boundaries are encountered by the pressure disturbance. Furthermore, theprevious equation may beapplied only after the pressure has built up sufficiently. The difference, pi - pws, must be lo-20% percent of the drawdown pressure (Ap) encountered during the flowing portion of the pretest to assure its validity. A further
important consideration which may raise questions regarding the valid application of this equation is the presence of formation boundaries or thin shale barriers which effectively block thepropagation of thespherical pressure disturbance. Their presence may cause the

buildup to become cylindrical rather than spherical in character. 32

FIGURE 39 A linear-linear plot produces astraight line with slope m during the spherical buildup period.

kani, can be defined as m, = 8.0 x lo4 or (13) An example computation using this spherical buildup technique is given in Appendix A.
The computed permeability, k,, is the permeability to flow in a spherical flow regime. This permeability may be related to the horizontal (k,) and vertical (k,) permeability by the equation (12)

kani = k,/k,


A graphical means of determining k, and k, from the evaluation of k, and degree of anisotropy, if known, is shown in Fig. 40. For example, if k, is determined to be 10 md and the anisotropy is 0.1, the horizontal permeability is found to be about 21.5 md. If the anisotropy is unknown, it may be evaluated from horizontal permeability information determined from the cylindrical buildup discussed later. The measurement of permeability from spherical buildup, unlike drawdown, is affected by information coming from deeper within the formation. This depth is affected by FMT pressure gauge resolution as well as formation and fluid-related parameters. The depth of

k,3 = kH2 x k,


In most conditions, the vertical permeability is less than the horizontal permeability and the degree of anisotropy,

investigation (cm) or sphere ofinfluence is typically on the order of a few feet beyond the probe. An equation

which relates the depth into the formation which most


10 kH (md) FIGURE 40 Chart for determination of kH and k, from the evaluation of k, and degree of anisotropy (d), if known.


affects the buildup is given as


= length of pretest flowing time, set = time elapsed after shut in, set

At At0.3 (t + At)0.2


As with the spherical equation, the cylindrical equation applies as long as no discon tin uities in the formation are encountered and only during the late stages of buildup.

= depth into formation affected by buildup, cm

The plot of the pressure data during buildup, shown in Fig. 39, may be used to obtain a better estimate of formation pressure. As pressure becomes great relative to t, the difference

For evaluation of permeability, Eq. 17 is rewritten to the form
(Pi - Pws)

= m,


approaches zero and FMT pressure approaches true formation pressure. Formation pressure may be estimated by extrapolation of the straight line plot of the spherical buildup curve to the

point, even though the observed pressure continues to increase at the time the pretest is terminated.
Cylindrical Buildup Permeability and Formation Pressure

At some point after shut in, the spherical pressure disturbance will likely encounter the bed boundaries or other local permeability barriers as shown in Fig. 41. As a result, the configuration of the disturbance undergoes a transition from a spherical to a cylindrical shape. Following this transition, analysis of pressure buildup relies on the cylindrical pressure buildup equation. Assuming an infinite reservoir, the following equation describes the cylindrical pressure buildup at the FMT probe: (pws - pi)= - 88.4 where

Schematic illustrating the transition from spherical to cylindrical flow.

($) log,o(fg) (17)

When buildup data is plotted on semi-logarithmic graph paper, with pi - pwS as the linear y-axis and t + At/At on a logarithmic x-axis as shown on Fig. 42, the plot is known as a Horner Plot. This data plots linearly on the Horner Plot during the cylindrical buildup period. The slope of that plot (m,) is measured in psi/cycle and permeability (k,) may be computed from the following equation: (19)
The permeability (k,) is a measurement of horizontal permeability beyond the skin-damaged zone, since the depth of investigation extends several feet from the wellbore.

= formation pressure, psi = pressure at probe after shut in, psi = flow rate during drawdown, cm3/sec = viscosity of formation fluid, cp = formation (cylindrical) horizontal permeability, md = distance between impermeable barriers, ft 34

P ws 9 IJ kc h

Where the FMT probe has been set in clean thin zones, the parameter his the zone or bed thickness. In more ex-


4500 %


To evaluate the formation pressure (p*) from the cylindrical buildup data, the linear portion of the Horner Plot must be extrapolated to the point where t + At/At approaches 1. This value of p* is valid as long as the pressure pulse has not encountered any discontinuity and the pressure pulse is cylindrical in character as modelled. This technique is illustrated in Fig. 42. An example computation demonstrating the cylindrical buildup method is carried out in Appendix A.

3 Y


The three approaches for estimating permeability (drawdown, spherical buildup, and cylindrical buildup) often produce three different permeability values, and at first glance, a very poor agreement with each other.
It becomes necessary to review the difference between the threeindividualpermeabilitymeasurements and to establish thepotential utility of each. The schematic of

Fig. 44 illustrates the regions of investigation for each method, assuming a fairly thin zone in which each buildup region fully develops for some period of time.
10 8 6 5 4 t + At At 3 2 . 1

IGURE 42 Semi-logarithmic plot of buildup data provides a straight line response of slope m for cylindrical buildup data.

tensive zones, especially those where numerous semiextensive thin shale layers exist as illustrated in Fig. 43, the proper value of h to be used in computations is not readily apparent. A value of h = 0.5 ft is frequently taken and appears to provide reasonable results in many instances. However, for best results in development wells, the parameter h should be adjusted to provide the best match between k, and permeability from core or other reliable data taken in the same reservoir.

The drawdown test drains 10 cm3 of fluid from the formation. During this pretest the converging character of the spherical flow assures that the greatest weight is given to the permeability where the greater pressure drop occurs, within about 2 cm from the probe. While the flow is spherical in character, it does not converge to a point since the flow enters the full diameter of the probe orifice. The computed drawdown permeability will
therefore be closer to the cylindrical permeability result than thespherical buildup value. Of primary considera-

tion is the fact that this region of formation near the borehole has been invaded and flushed by drilling fluids. As a result, permeability estimates are adversely affected due to mud filter cake, skin damage by clay particle hydration, mud solid infiltration, compaction, and relative permeability effects.

FIGURE 43 Numerous discontinous shale stringers pose a problem to a proper calculation of bed thickness (h).

FIGURE 44 Schematic illustrating regions of investigation.


Assuming no damage or plugging of the pore structure, the effect of relative permeability is illustrated in Fig. 45. kabs is the absolute permeability to one phase (gas, oil, or water) when only that one phase is present, and effective permeability is the permeabiity to an individual fluid phase when two or more phases are present. Absolute permeability is the maximum permeability to flow. Effective permeability (k,) to any single phase is always less than kabs when two phases are present since the pore space is occupied to some extent by the second phase. The flow channels are therefore somewhat restricted and effective permeability is less than absolute permeability. The term relative permeability (k,) is simply a fraction of k,, and is a convenient factor to use to compute k,. For example, if water and oil are present in and fill the pore volume, k eo and k ew
= krw x kabs = kro x kabs

Permeabilities determined from buildup pressures are responsive to formation characteristics deeper into the formation, i. e., the fluid which is mobile deep in the formation is the fluid which affects the test. In an oil zone, the permeability measured is less than the absolute permeability if the formation is water wet. This measure point is illustrated on the relative permeability curves of Fig. 45. The spherical model may be affected, in part, by the invaded zone since the spherical disturbance propagates in all directions. It is apparent from Fig. 44 that for spherical buildup to measure effective permeability to oil deeper in the formation, the distance between barriers must be great relative to the invasion depth. If this is not the case, the transition to cylindrical buildup begins before the spherical disturbance propagates appreciably beyond the invaded zone. Unless depth of invasion is very
large, thecylindricalmodelis best suited to evaluate the effectivepermeability to hydrocarbon, subject to proper values used for the formation thickness (h).



The flushed zone water saturation (S,,) for a water-wet oil reservoir may exhibit flushed zone water saturations of 0.75 to 0.95. The relative permeability curve to water is steeply declining over this range from k,, = 1.0 (Fig. 45). Therefore the observed permeability is significantly reduced even though only water flows into the FMT tool.

dicated by spherical buildup may be considerably lower than actual horizontalpermeability. Core analysis may

Spherical permeability, as discussed earlier, may be related to horizontal permeability if the anisotropy (k/k,) is known. As a result, the permeability inalso indicate anisotropy exists in the horizontal direction with the difference between the maximum and minimum frequently exceeding a factor of 10 or more.

A comparison of permeability computed by drawdown with that from cylindrical buildup is illustrated in Fig. 46. While the correlation appears good, the differences may be resolved or used to resolve such unknowns as effective distance between permeability barriers, degree of skin damage, anisotropy, etc., especially when combined with spherical buildup and/or core data.

FIGURE 45 Effects of relative permeability.

If the mud is water based, a water zone will exhibit k,, as its permeability. In an oil-wet reservoir, an oil zone flushed with oil-based mud filtrate will exhibit k,,. This assumes no mechanical damage in either of the above cases. However, the mud may have been viscosified, gelled, or otherwise treated with soluble additives, and so the character of its filtrate may be quite different from brine.

FIGURE 46 Comparison of cylindrical buildup permeability computations to drawdown permeability computations.

BED THICKNESS DEFINITION DURING BUILDUP During the buildup phase impermeable boundaries may be encountered by the spherical pressure pulse. As a result, the buildup data begins to deviate upward above the linear portion of the spherical buildup plot, as illustrated in Fig. 47. The point of deviation signals the transition from spherical to cylindrical buildup. The distance from the probe to this impermeable bed may be estimated by the following equation:

An alternative method of determining h has been reported. This technique is based on the time, t*, after the beginning of flow, from which the actual pressure buildup deviates from its linear character during the spherical phase. The equation to determine h on this basis is x 1O-4 (23) where t* = time after beginning of flow when buildup deviates from straight line spherical plot, set = t* - flowing time, set

where At* h’ V

= distance to impermeable layer, cm = volume of flow, cm3 = initial formation pressure, psi = pressure determined from extrapolation of linear spherical buildup, psi = formation porosity, % = formation total compressibility = anisotropy, k/k, SUBSURFACE PRESSURE REGIMES Hydrostatic Pressure Hydrostatic pressure is created by the unit weight and vertical height of a fluid column. The size and shape of this fluid column have no effect on the magnitude of this pressure. Hydrostatic pressure, pHY, equals the mathematical product of the average fluid density and its vertical height such as

P* + ct




= average density, = gravitational constant = height of the column


In terms of drilling and formation tester operations, p,,(psi) = C x MW x Z where Z = vertical height of fluid column in feet, (25)

MW = fluid density or mud weight in lb/gal (lb/gal, ppg) or lb/ft3 C = conversion constant (C = 0.052 if MW in lb/gal and C = 0.00695 if MW in lb/ft3).

In the metric system, Eq. 25 becomes
FIGURE 47 Upward deviation of spherical pressure buildup (upper right corner) signals the transition from spherical to cylindrical buildup. pHY

= 0.098 x MW x Z


where Z, the vertical fluid column, is in meters and MW, the mud weight, is in g/cm3. 37

The hydrostatic pressure gradient is affected by the concentration of dissolved solids (i. e., salts) and gases in the fluid column and different or varying temperature gradients. In other words, an increase in dissolved solids (i. e., higher salt concentration) tends to increase the normal pressure gradient whereas increasing amounts of gases in solution and higher temperatures would decrease the normal hydrostatic pressure gradient. For example, a pressure gradient of 0.465 psi/ft assumes a water salinity of 80,000 parts per million (ppm) NaCl at a temperature of 77’F (25OC). Typical average hydrostatic gradients which may be encountered during drilling for oil and gas are shown below:
Hydrostatic Gradient 0.433 Equivalent Mud Wt. (ppg) 8.33 Total Chlorides (ppm) fresh water Basin Location Rocky Mountains, Beaufort, Brunei, Malay, Sverdrup, N. Slope in Alaska (most of world’s basins) North Sea, Delaware (older portion Pre Penn.) Gulf Coast Portions of Gulf Coast

where z +
P ma Pf

= vertical height of geologic column = porosity of formation expressed as a fraction
= =

density of rock matrix density of fluid

Generally, it is assumed that overburden pressure increases uniformly with depth. For example, average Tertiary deposits on the U. S. Gulf Coast and elsewhere exert an overburden pressure gradient of 1.0 psi/ft of depth. This corresponds to a force exerted by a formation with an average bulk density of 2.31 g/cm3. Experience also indicates that the probable maximum overburden gradient in clastic rocks may be as high as 1.35 psi/ft. Worldwide observations over the last few years have resulted in the concept of a varying overburden gradient for fracture pressure gradient predictions used in drilling and completion operations.
Formation Pressure







0.465 0.478

9.0 9.2

80,000 95,000

Formation pressure (pf) is the pressure acting upon the fluids (formation water, oil, gas) in the pore space of the formation. Normal formation pressures in any geologic setting will equal the hydrostatic head (i. e., hydrostatic pressure) of water from the surface to the subsurface formation. Abnormal formation pressures, by definition, are then characterized by any departure from the normal trend line. Formation pressures exceeding hydrostatic pressure (pf > p,,) in a specific geologic environment are defined as abnormally high formation pressures (superpressures), whereas formation pressures less than hydrostatic are called subnormal (subpressures). Figure 48 and Eq. 27 both illustrate how these subsurface pressures and stress concepts are related: PO = Pf where PO Pf = overburden pressure (total vertical stress, lithostatic pressure) = formation pressure (pore fluid pressure, pore pressure) = grain-to-grain presssure (matrix stress, effective stress, vertical rock-frame stress).

In general then, the hydrostatic pressure gradient (gfp) can be defined in psi/ft from: gfp = 0.433 x yw (27)

where yw is the specific gravity of a representative column of water.
Overburden Pressure


This pressure originates from the combined weight of the formation matrix (rock) and the fluids (water, oil, gas) in the pore space overlying the formation of interest. Mathematically, the overburden pressure (p,) can be expressed as: Weight (Rock Matrix + Fluid) PO = Area

- +) prna + +Pf G




Overpressures are defined by: pf (Psi 1 Pf @ia) = gfp x D + C = gfp x D + 15 + C (33) (34)

whereas subpressures (underpressures) are described by pf (Psi) pf @ia) = gfp x D - C = gfp x D + 15 - C (35) (36)

Hydrocarbon pressure regimes depart from subsurface water regimes in that the densities of oil and/or gas are less than that of water. Consequently, hydrocarbon pressure gradients are smaller, typical values being Gas Density (g/cm3)
FIGURE 48 Subsurface pressure concepts.

Pressure Gradient (psi/ft) 0.11 0.08 Pressure Gradient (psi/ft) 0.37 0.35

0.25 0.18 Oil Density (g/cm3) 0.85 0.80 where g/cm3 + 2.31 = psi/ft

In normal pressure environments (pr = pHY) the matrix stress supports the overburden load due to grain-to-grain contacts. Any reduction in this direct grain-to-grain stress (o-0) will cause the pore fluid to support part of the overburden, the result being abnormal formation pressures (pf > p,,). In other words, the overburden may effectively be buoyed by high formation pressures. There are numerous factors that can cause abnormal formation pressures such as surpressures and subpressures. Frequently, a combination of several superimposed causes prevail in a given basin and as such is related to the stratigraphic, tectonic, and geochemical history of the area. This has been discussed in detail (Hawkins, 1956). Generally speaking, any subsurface fluid pressure (pf) is a function of the fluid pressure gradient (gfp) and true vertical depth (D), such as


APPLICATIONS OF FMT PRESSURE MEASUREMENTS The most important feature of the FMT is its ability to perform pretest pressure measurements with reasonable accuracy at numerous selected depth intervals. Pretest

pf (Psi)
pf @ia)

= gfp x D
gauge pressure units = gfpx D + 15 absolute pressure units


(31) (32)

formation pressures are typically determined following the observation of a stable buildup to formation shutin pressure. It is essential that this formation shut-in pressure reading be taken as long as safely possible after the flowing portion of the pretest in order to allow adequate time for the pressure to build up and approach the actual formation pressure. A typical formation pressure reading is illustrated in Fig. 49. If the pressure test is terminated too early, the formation shut-in pressure reading will be too low since sufficient buildup did not occur.
Measured Depth vs. True Vertical Depth It is also veryimportant that all measured pressure data be evaluated at the true vertical depth (TVD) regardless

gfr, (psi/ft) = pf (psi)/D (ft)

In subsurface water pressure regimes, the typical average pressure gradients for fresh and brackish water are 0.433 psi/ft and for salt water, 0.465 psi/ft. These values correspond to fluid density values of 1.0 g/cm3 and 1.07 g/cm3. Figure 19 shows water density as a function of salinity, temperature, and pressure. 39

of the borehole drift angle. This is illustrated by the example in Fig. 50, where vertical Well A was drilled to 10,000 ft and the measured depth of deviated Well B was 12,000 ft, although the true vertical depth of the target

ANALOG (Psi) -L-l-2

B i


FIGURE 49 Adequate time for pressure buildup must be allowed.



FIGURE 50 Vertical borehole vs. measured depths and TVD in directional boreholes.

zone in Well B was also 10,000 feet. Both wells were drilled with similar mud systems, corresponding to a hydrostatic gradient of 0.465 psi/ft, or 4650 psi at TVD in both wells. Serious interpretive errors would have resulted if measured depth of Well B had been used to calculate hydrostatic pressure (12,000 x 0.465 = 5580 psi), in which case the resultant value would be 930 psi too high. Pressure Regimes in Water-Bearing Reservoirs Subsurface aquifers can have normal (hydrostatic) pressures or they may be either overpressured or underpressured. If a well penetrates a sequence of permeable water sands, FMT pretest pressure measurements can be


FIGURE 51 Formation pressure gradient.

information can be invaluable to drilling plans for offset wells and in optimizing completion practices.

The shallow zone is slightly underpressured and the deepest zone is considerably overpressured. This type of

Supercharging Formation pressure measurements can be affected by a set of conditions known as supercharging. Supercharg-

used to identify the normal hydrostatic gradient and locate those strata which are either overpressured or underpressured.

ingis thenaturalresult oftheradialflowofinvadingmud filtrateinto the formation during theprocess of building up a filter cake over a permeable depth interval, as il-

The plot of depth vs. formation pressure in Fig. 51 is taken from five FMT pretest pressures: 660 psi at 2000 ft, 2325 psi at 5000 ft, 4650 psi at 10,000 ft, 5580 psi at 12,000 ft, and 8150 psi at 12,500 ft. The formation pressure gradient (gf,) for each zone is calculated as follows:
660 psi Q 2000 ft 2325 psi @ 5000 ft

ing should not be confused with intrinsic formation overpressures. Two mud-related factors which affect the

lustrated in Fig. 52. The supercharging effect causes the observed formation pressure (near the wellbore) to be greater than the actual formation pressure. Supercharg-

grr, =


= 0.33 psi/ft = 0.465 psi/ft

gr, = 2325/5000

4650 psi @ 10,000 ft gr, = 4650/10,000 = 0.465 psi/ft 5580 ps1 @I 12,000 ft gg = 5580/12,000

= 0.465 psi/ft = 0.65 psi/ft 41

8150 psi @ 12,500 ft gr, = 8150/12,500

filtration rate are (1) the degree of pressure differential (or overpressure) between the mud and the formation and (2) the extent of mud cake buildup and its effectiveness in preventing further filtrate fluid loss into the formation. The second factor tends to mitigate the effects of supercharging with time if the zone has adequate permeability to allow the pressure to bleed off and dissipate. Supercharging can be quite large in very tight formations (< 0.5 md) as illustrated by the data in Fig. 53. Plots of pressure vs. depth from several pretest readings will usually reveal these zones which are anomalous because of supercharging as shown in Fig. 53.

pressures vs. depth (TVD) presents a quantitative profile of each individual horizon’s ability to drive its produced fluid to the surface. A typical plot of pressures vs. depth (TVD) compared to bulk volume analysis from openhole logs across three potentially productive hydrocarbon zones is shown in Fig. 54. A hydrostatic mud coIumn pressure gradient is also plotted.
Maximum advantage of pretest formation pressure data is attained if the pressures used on the plot are derived from the extrapolation of the appropriatepressure and buildup plots. As discussed earlier, buildup pressure data

is a truer representation of formation fluid pressures, especially when rock permeabilities are low. The presenFIGURE 52 Supercharging results from radial flow of the mud filtrate into the formation during filter cake buildup.

tation of the mud column pressuregradient serves as a check to verify proper tool operation during the downhole pressure survey. If a particular stratigraphic unit is relatively thick and undisturbed by prior depletion, a formation pressure profile across that zone may indicate the type of movingpore fluid. Equation 27 applies in this circumstance

just as it did with hydrostatic gradients. gfp (psi/ft) = 0.433 x Reservoir Fluid Density (cm3) Formation water densities generally vary in gradient from 0.433 psi/ft (fresh water) to 0.465 psi/ft and greater for salty waters. Gas zones generally exhibit gradients less than 0.1 psi/ft. Liquid hydrocarbons will vary from 0.25 to 0.34 psi/ft or greater depending on oil gravity and gas/oil ratio (GOR). A key to gradient (or slope) is given in the lower right-hand corner of Fig. 54. FMT fluid pressure gradients therefore play an important role in verifying, or identifying, the presence of water, gas, or liquid hydrocarbons in a formation.
Determination of Movable Formation Fluid Density in Zones with High Connate Water Resistivity In depth intervals where the reservoir connate water resistivity (R,) is high, and the traditional Archie method of log analysis allows for some uncertainty of pore fluid type, a crossplot of pHY versus p* is recommended. Pressures derived from the Hewlett-Packard

FIGURE 53 Large supercharging effects are most common in tight formations.

Selection of Test Intervals Proper analysis of openholelogs should allow selection of themorepermeablezones forpressuremeasurements.

Good log interpretation practices will help the FMT user avoid testing strata where supercharging is likely to occur. In any case, the higher credibility should be given those pressure measurements taken from zones of highest permeability. Very long pretests are indicative of extremely low permeability and likely to be supercharged. Effects of supercharging can be further minimized by running the FMT service as long as possible after mud circulation, which would allow for maximum mud cake buildup and pressure dissipation.
Pressure Gradients and Particular Pressure Regimes

gauges should be utilized because of their superior resolution. With several data points available, a best-fit line or slope can be established. The resultant slope is proportional to the in-situ density of the formation fluid (Pf). Multiplying the slope value by the mud density (P,,d) yields the product Pf. The above assumes static hydraulic equilibrium over the designated depth interval.
Defining Gas/Liquid and Oil/Water Contacts

When an adequate number of formation pressure measurements are acquired in a borehole, a plot of those 42

Pressure gradients derived from FMT data have also found significant usage in defining gas/liquid and





1.19 g/cm3







1500 PRESSURE (psi)



FIGURE 54 Comparison of bulk volume analysis from open hole logs to a typical FMT pressure versus TVD depth plot.

oil/water contacts. The free water level indicated in Fig. 55 represents the depth where capillarypressure equals zero. A series of FMT pressure measurements across the oil and water zones were plotted vs. depth. A saturation profile from log analysis is provided on the right side of Fig. 55 for comparison. Note that the free water level point occurs where the oil gradient and water gradient intersect.

oil/water contact represents the depth where oil saturation begins to increase from zero. A transition zone is in-

The height (Z) above the free water level is a function of capillary pressures, i. e., differences between permeability, fluid densities, and the rock fluid interfaces. It might also be noted that the oil/water contact is indicated as being several feet above the free water level in Fig. 55. The

dicated where oil saturation continues to increase until irreducible water saturation (Si,) is attained. Transition zones may exist well above both the free water level and the oil/water contact due to poor vertical permeability, water saturations greater than irreducible, etc. Completion in the transition zone often results in some water production. There are also occasions where “hydrocarbon shows” are observed in well cuttings and/or cores, but the FMT water gradient verifies that the hydrocarbon is only present in negligible amounts. Keep in mind that the pretest shut-in pressures are derived from the cylindrical portion of the buildup data, affected by the formation fluids some distance from the borehole. Zone Isolation or Communication When multiple potentially productive zones are encountered in the same borehole, it is possible to use I?MT pressure data to determine whether or not hydrostatic communication exists between the zones. As shown in Fig. 56, connected zones differ from each other by the
amount ofhydrostaticpressure head between thezones.

When it is considered that the communicating reservoir fluids may be some distance from the wellbore, it may be uncertain whether the connecting fluid is water, oil, or a mixture of the two. If a hydrostatic envelope is drawn from a pressure plot in each zone as shown by the arcs A, B, and C for points a, b, and c of Fig. 56, any overlap or contact of the envelopes (shaded areas) corresponds to a depth at which the zones may be connected. The common overlap region defines a point (depth) at which the apparent separate zones may have a common pressure from which a hydrostatic gradient yielding the individual zone’s pressures is possible. The overlap only indicates the possibility of communication. Zones A and B of Fig. 56 overlap below point a and above point b and have a common contact along the oil gradient line between points a and b. The close proximity of the overlapping envelopes would lead one to strongly suspect vertical communication between zones A and B. The probability of zone C being connected to either zone A or zone B is less likely. Note that the overlap of hydrostatic gradient from zone C overlaps with the oil gradient from zones A and B at point d in Fig. 56. Point 44

FIGURE 55 Comparison of FMT pressure data to a saturation profile from log analysis.

An oil or gas reservoir, under virgin conditions, exhibits two fluid phases near the wellbore, i. e., mud filtrate and either oil or gas. Thepressures of the twointerfaces differ because of the effects of capillary pressure. The oil/water contact lies above the free water level by a distance determined by capillary pressures, grain size, permeability, etc. In the transition zone, the capillary pressure is a function of the wetting phase saturation: PC = PO - pw where PC PO PVf = capillary pressure = oil capillary pressure = water capillary pressure




FIGURE 56 FMT pressure data is useful to determine whether or not hydrostatic communication exists between multiple zones.


d is far removed from the three zones under consideration. Furthermore, if the oil/water contact occurs in zone B as indicated by bulk volume log analysis, pressure would only move down to zone C along the water gradient. It must therefore be concluded that zones B and C are not in communication. It is possible that zones A and C are connected, although excluding zone B from such a vertical communication would appear unlikely. However, no water contact is noted in zone A so a remote possibility of connecting to zone C must be considered. It is extremely important that interpretations, such as that given in Fig. 56, be made from pressure data taken from virgin reservoirs, i.e, where production has not yet begun. Reservoir depletion from offset wells causes dramatic pressure changes in reservoirs. In the example in Fig. 57, the pressures in zone 1 are significantly lower than the pressures in zone 2. Although the oil gradients in zone 1 and the upper portion of zone 2 are similar, the two zones are not connected because of the significant difference in the hydrostatic gradient. Zones 3 and 4 of Fig. 57 are in all likelihood part of the same reservoir, as indicated by the schematic. FMT

pressure data therefore plays an important role in identifyingzoneisolation or communication between zones.

The scenario in the figure could be enhanced with wellto-well log correlations, comparison to seismic interpretations, and detailed stratigraphic analysis from dip data, curve shape studies, and other electrofacies fingerprints. Impermeable layers within a reservoir can also be identified from the pretest pressure recordings. The recogni-

tion of non-permeable streaks is especially important in manycarbonatereservoirs where the better permeability and higher formation pressures are fundamental to hydrocarbon production.

Determination of Oil/Water Contact Below Total Depth of the Borehole FMT pressure test data can be combined with the analysis of well logs and used to calculate an approximate depth of the oil/water contact even though the borehole has not penetrated the contact. Such information is obviouslyimportant to the developmentgeologist in order toproperlyselect the geographical location for

offset wells. It also provides the reservoir engineer with needed data for estimating reserves. The FMT data from the well in Fig. 58 showed a formation pressure of 3280 psi at 7000 feet. The recovered oil has an ‘API gravity of 24’ and agas/oil ratio (GOR) of 200. Using the chart in Fig. 20, a GOR of 200 exhibits a density of 0.85 g/cm3 (or a pressure gradient of 0.37 psi/ft) and assuming a hydrostatic gradient of 0.465 psi/ft for water: p0 (psi) 3280 or, C (oil) and pW (psi) 3280 or, C (water) = gf,, x D + C (water) = 0.465 x 7000 + C (water) = 3280 - 3255 = 15 = gfpo x D + C (oil) = 0.37 x 7000 + c = 3280 - 2590 = 690

Knowing that p0 = pW (p, = 0) at free water level, then 0.37 x D + 690 = 0.465 x D + 15 0.095D
FIGURE 57 Determining zone isolation from FMT pressure data.

= 675 = 7105 ft, the estimated depth of free water level



3280 OS, li, 700011


FIGURE 58 Oil/water contact below TD - oil reservoir.

Reservoir and Zonal Depletion

When several wells in a reservoir are produced, newly drilled offset in-field wells usually detect changes in the formation pressure profile as a result of production. If numerous thin zones are produced, the pressure changes in the offset wells provide a clue as to which zones are being depleted. When a single thick sand is produced, the changes in the pressure profile of the reservoir from a linear fluid gradient indicate that certain parts of the reservoir are preferentially produced over others as shown in Fig. 59. This is often due to higher permeability reservoir sections being depleted more rapidly while the tighter sections maintain their pressure, or to permeability barriers separating various portions of the interval.
Detection of these production anomalies may indicate that some changes in the completion practice should be made in order to optimally produce the reservoir during primary production. Monitor Injection Program in In-Field Wells

FIGURE 59 Pressure profiles can illustrate the parts of a reservoir which show a preference to produce.

per circumstances, be detectable by the FMT. Some

A closely related application is to monitor reservoir pressure from newly drilled in-field wells during secondary recovery operations. This technique verifies the effectiveness of the injection wells and the pressure maintenance program. A pressure contour map

matrix blocks are initially water saturated but later in geologic time the fracture permeability is filled with liquid hydrocarbon. The matrix blocks become partially saturated with the hydrocarbon. If the blocks are large enough, the lower portion of the block remains water saturated until the pressure differential due to hydrostatic and capillary effects is sufficient to displace the water. Above this point, hydrocarbon saturation increases toward irreducible water saturation, which is achieved only in sufficiently large blocks. The FMT response is shown in Fig. 61. The apparent oil gradient corresponds to the overall gradient of the fluid in the fracture, while deviations toward lower pressure are indicated where the FMT was set on the water-saturated portion of the block. The FMT pretest buildup plot deviates from building up to a stationary pressure, indicating that the pressure transient was controlled by the pressure within the fracture volume as shown in Fig. 62. An estimate of fracture block size can be made on the basis of the deviation from spherical buildup as illustrated in Fig. 62. The following two equations have been reported, where h is the block size in cubic centimeters.
Based on Pressure Deviation

developed from wireline formation tester data is shown in Fig. 60. It is apparent that the high pressure ridges line up with the bank of injection wells.
Fracture Detection Naturally fractured formations, where interconnected

fractures form a high permeability network among otherwise low permeability blocks may, under the pro-

The average block size may be estimated with the following quadratic equation:



I \*

. l \. . . 7
. . .






FIGURE 60 Pressure contour map developed from wireline test data.

lFIGURE 61 FMT pretest pressures through a series of matrix blocks, some of which contain a permeable fracture network. FIGURE 62 FMT pressure buildup in a fractured reservoir.

(2301 x D) h, + (C - 115.1 x D) h - 0.3 = 0 where C and D


Extremely Tight Formations If formation permeability is extremely low, the pretest piston will draw a near-vacuum as the formation is essentially drawn down by its full pressure. The FMT drawdown is force limited to 7500 psi below hydrostatic pressure. Once the pretest piston completes its stroke, the formation continues to feed fluid into the pretest system until 10 cm3 is accumulated. (In geographical areas where such formations are common a 5-cm3 plug is often used, limiting the pretest to a 5-cm3 volume.) The lowest possible pressure during a tight pretest is the vapor pressure of the fluid (usually mud filtrate) filling the pretest system. Vapor pressure is a function of temperature, e. g., vapor pressure for water at 300’F is 67 psi. Any drawdown pressure records below the vapor pressure should therefore be caused by temperature effect on the pressure gauge and deviation from the gauge calibration. Newer FMT tools and current software correct thepressuregaugefor temperature effect. If sufficient time is allowed, the pressure will slowly build up to a shut-in formation pressure. Grain Size Effects Studies of grain size and sorting have shown that a correlation exists to permeability and particular environments of deposition. Studies of log curve shapes

(41) = average block size, cm3 = extrapolated pressure, psi = reservoir pressure, psi = porosity, % = matrix fluid compressibility, psi ml = flow rate, cm3/sec = flow time, set

Pi + Ct cl t

Based on Time of Deviation

An alternate approach based upon time of deviation is reported as follows: (42)


= total time elapsed between beginning of flow to deviation from linear buildup, set = t* - length of flowing time, set 49

and their comparison to full core petrographic analysis have shown that characteristic features of fining upward, coarsening upward, etc. can often provide clues to help identifyparticular sedimentary environments. It is also


generally accepted that grain size and sorting affect the nature of permeability, with finer grain and/or poorer sorting correlating to lower permeability.

A profile of numerous FMT-derived permeabilities vs. depth across a particular formation might also provide such an inference to the original environment of deposition. In a deltaic distributary mouth bar, for example, a permeability profile would be expected to show an increase in permeability upward vs. depth, whereas the spontaneous potential, gamma ray, or other log curves sensitive to grain size change would tend to show a coarsening upward trend. This idealized comparison is shown in Fig. 63.

The purpose of pulse testing is to provide estimates of average transmissibility (kh/p) and storage (Qcth) in the reservoir between the wells being tested. Conventional pulse tests cannot usually provide the horizontal and vertical permeabilities of each layer of strata, information which is critical for optimal design of reservoir management procedures. The FMT can provide the permeability data with the necessary detail. Optimal management of stratified reservoirs requires a knowledge of the transmissibility and storage values of each layer as well as vertical permeabilities across the boundaries between the layers. This is necessary information if the reservoir engineer is to reliably predict how injected fluid will travel through the reservoir during a waterflood, CO, flood, etc. With conventionalpulse testing, it is near impossible to estimate these properties in a stratified reservoir. The FMT can provide the needed information. The FMT procedure requires a minimum of two surveys of the observation well. The first survey is conducted sequentially with the initial suite of openhole logs. Immediately following, a disturbance is created in the adjacent well by alternating flow rates. Following the flow disturbance, a second FMT survey is made in the observation well. The second FMT survey should indicate a different pressure profile than the first survey. From this difference, the degree of vertical and area communication between the two wells in the reservoir can be determined. A numerical reservoir simulator is commonly used to analyze the data. The pressure profiles and pulse rates from the two FMT surveys are history-matched, allowing an estimate of both the horizontal (k,) and vertical (k,) permeabilities of each layer. Saturation changes are usually negligible during the FMT pulse test and are not usually simulated. The short test period virtually eliminates the need to consider other reservoir influences such as production decline, pressure decline, well history, field history, etc. FMT REALITY The primary goals of formation pressure testing are to quantify the effective permeability of the reservoir and to evaluate the efficiency of the well. Pressure buildup and pressure drawdown are two of the more popular test variations which are used to evaluate a reservoir. Formation Multi-Tester tools provide an avenue for well operators to approach these goals in a quick, relatively inexpensive way. Other wireline services (e. g., produc50

FIGURE 63 Grain size studies from logs can be compared to pretest pressure permeability profiles.

FMT Pulse Testing Pulse testing techniques are widely used to determine the reservoir properties between the adjacent wells involved in the test. Test procedures involve one pulsing well (production or injection) and an observation well to observe pressure response. In order to utilize the FMT, the observation well must be uncased across the reservoir being tested. A series of flow disturbances are created in the pulsing well by alternating production (or injection) with a shutin period. The pressure response to those pulses is measured in the observation well utilizing the downhole pressure gauge. The Hewlett-Packard quartz gauge should be used because the pressure responses are very small, occasionally less than 0.1 psi. Pulse periods are usually of short duration.




ct D AP Appt APS

Area, ft2 API units of oil gravity Conversion factor Compressibility, psi-’ Compressibility of formation fluid, psi-t Depth, ft or m Pressure differential, psi Drawdown during pretest
(P formation - Pflowing), Psi

MW CJ mm
gfP +

Pf pg Pi PO pw

ffw g


GR GOR GWR h H-P HY k k abs
kani kc kcl ke kH

k eo k ew k ro k rw
ks k


Drawdown during sampling (P formation - Pflowing), Psi Time increment, min or set Drillstem test Flow efficiency Formation Multi-Tester Formation water fraction, percent Acceleration due to gravity, cm/sec2 or ft/sec2 specific gravity, g/cm3 Gamma ray log Gas/oil ratio, ft3/bbl Gas/water ratio, ft3/bbl Effective formation thickness, ft Hewlett-Packard quartz pressure gauge Hydrostatic Permeability, md Absolute permeability, md Anisotropy (k,/k,) Cylindrical buildup permeability, md Drawdown permeability, md Effective permeability, md Horizontal permeability, md Effective permeability to oil, md Effective permeability to water, md Relative permeability to oil, md Relative permeability to water, md Spherical buildup permeability, md Vertical permeability, md Slope of a pressure buildup curve, psi/cycle Slope of a cylindrical pressure buildup curve, psi/cycle Slope of a spherical pressure buildup curve, psi/cycle Viscosity of gas

P WS P* PI 9


Rm f



P P ma
pf %J SG siw


S x0


Viscosity of oil Viscosity of water Mud weight, lb/gal or lb/ft3 Matrix stress, psi Parts per million Fluid pressure gradient, psi/ft Porosity, percent Pressure, psi Capillary pressure, psi Flowing pressure, psi Gas pressure, psi Formation pressure, psi Oil pressure, psi Water pressure, psi Pressure at probe after shut in, psi Formation pressure extrapolated from Horner Plot, psi Productivity index Flow rate, cm3/sec or bbl/day Flow rate during pretest (chamber size/time to fill), cm3/sec Probe radius, in. Depth into formation affected by buildup, cm Resistivity of mud filtrate, ohm-m2/m Resistivity of recovered fluid, ohm-m2/m True resistivity of the formation, ohm-m2/m Resistivity of the connate water, ohm-m2/m Density, g/cm3 Matrix density, g/cm3 Fluid density, g/cm3 Gas saturation, percent Gas solubility Irreducible water saturation, percent Oil saturation, percent Solubility ratio Water saturation, percent Water saturation of the flushed zone, percent Spontaneous potential curve, mV Time, min or set Volume of liquid or gas, cm3 or ft3 Variable Pressure Control

VPC-FMT Formation Multi-Tester with Variable Pressure Control Water cut, percent WC Compressibility factor Z Vertical height Z

Milburn, J.D. and Howell, J.C.: “Formation Evaluation with the Wireline Tester - Merits and Shortcomings:’ J. Pet. Tech. (October 1961). Moran, J.H. and Finklea, E.E.: “Theoretical Analysis of Pressure Phenomena Associated with the Wireline Formation Tester’ J. Pet. Tech. (August 1962). Odeh, A.S. and Selig, F.: “Pressure Buildup Analysis, Variable Rate Case:’ J. Pet. Tech. (July 1963). Pirson, S.J.: Handbook of Well Log Analysis, PrenticeHall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, N.J. (1963). Schowalter, T.T.: “Mechanics of Secondary Hydrocarbon Migration and Entrapment:’ Bull. AAPG (1979). Sethi, D.K., Vercellino, W.C., and Fertl, W.H.: The Formation Multi-Tester - Its Basic Principles and Practical Field Applications, SPWLA Twenty-First Annual Logging Symposium (1980). Slider, H.C.: Practical Petroleum Reservoir Engineering Methods, The Petroleum Publishing Co., Tulsa, Okla. (1977). Standing, M.B.: Volumetric and Phase Behaviour of Oil Field Hydrocarbon Systems, Reinhold Publishing Corp., New York (1952). Van Everdinger, A.F.: “The Skin Effect and Its Influence on the Production Capacity of a Well:’ Trans. AIME (1953).

Beal, C.: “The Viscosity of Air, Water, Natural Gas, Crude Oil and Its Associated Gases at Oilfield Temperature and Pressure:’ Trans. AIME (1946). Bonham, L.C.: “Solubility of Methane in Water at Elevated Temperatures and Pressures:’ Bull. AAPG (1978). Brown, K.E.: The Technology of Artificial Lift Methods, Vol. I, The Petroleum Publishing Co., Tulsa, Okla. (1977). Chew, J.N. and Connally, C.A.: “A Viscosity Correlation for Gas-Saturated Crude Oil:’ J. Pet. Tech. (1959).
Reservoir Engineering,

Craft, B.C. and Hawkins, M.F.: Applied Petroleum Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, N.J. (1959).

Log Review I, Dresser Atlas Publication (1974).
Log Interpretation Charts, Dresser Atlas Publication

(1983). Fertl, W.H.: Abnormal Formation Pressures, Elsevier Scientific Publishing Co., New York-Amsterdam (1976). Frick and Tayler: Petroleum Production Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Company (1962). Gunter, J.M. and Moore, C.V.: Improved Use of Wireline Testers for Reservoir Evaluation, SPE 14063 presented at SPE International Meeting on Petroleum Engineering, Beijing, China, March, 1986. Hawkins, M.F., Jr.: “A Note on the Skin Effect:’ Trans. AIME (1956). Horner, D.R.: “Pressure Buildup in Wells:’ Proc. Third World Petroleum Congress, Leiden (1951). Katz, D.L., Cornell, D., Kobayashi, R., Poetmann, F.H., Vary, J.A., Elenbaas, J.R., and Weinaug, C.F.: Handbook of Natural Gas Engineering, McGraw-Hill Book Company (1959). Mathews, C.S. and Russell, D.G.: Pressure Buildup and Flow Tests in Wells, SPE Monograph (1967).

An example problem utilizing FMT-measured pressures for many of the computations discussed in earlier sections is presented in this Appendix. The FMT pressure record in Fig. A-l will be used through the following computation sequences. A pretest volume of 10 cm3 with a 0.562-in. diameter probe was used during the pretest. The following derivations will be made from this pretest record:

drawdown permeability, k, spherical buildup permeability, k, effective bed thickness from spherical buildup, h cylindrical buildup permeability, k, time estimate for retrieving a 10-liter sample





Permeability from Drawdown


= 930 psi/set

The flowing period begins at recorder time of 31 seconds, indicated as t=O on the log of Fig. A-l, and ends at 39 seconds, indicated as tl =8 seconds. The fluid withdrawn is a filtrate having a resistivity of 0.027 ohm-m at 170’F (76OC) or 120,000 ppm NaCl equivalent. Using the chart of Fig. 24, a viscosity of approximately 0.5 cp would be estimated. The minimum steady-state flowing pressure during drawdown is approximately 900 psi and the pressure builds to about 3930 psi. Drawdown permeability, k,, is determined using the following equation (11): k, = 1842 x C x From the information above, C q c1 d AP = 0.75 = 10 cm3/8 set = 1.25 cm3/sec = 0.5 cp = 0.562 in. = 3930 - 900 = 3030 psi

The computation is

x (0.16 x 3 x 10m5)” = 0.19 md

The drawdown permeability, k,, is therefore k, = 1842 x 0.75 x (o.25~~~o) = 0.51md
FIGURE A.2 Spherical buildup plot.

Effective Bed Thickness Computation Permeability from Spherical Buildup

The raw data taken from the log of Fig. A-l is tabulated as At, t + At, and the spherical buildup parameter is

A plot of the pressure recording versus the spherical buildup parameter is given in Fig. A-2. This plot shows the spherical buildup pressure estimate to be 3938 psi and the slope, m,, to be 930 psi/set%. Buildup permeability is given as:

For this computation, assume that the anisotropy k/k, = 1. From Fig. A-2, the extrapolation of spherical pressure buildup, p*, is 3938 psi, whereas the data deviates toward a higher value of formation pressure, p, of approximately 3940.5 psi (see dashed line). The effective thickness, based on the pressure match criterion, is given by Eq. 22:


Taking the following values for this FMT test, k,/kn Pi - Ps* V = 1 = 2.5 psi = 10 cm3

x Q+>”

Using the FMT pretest data in question, q + ct P = 1.25 cm3/sec = 0.16 = 3 x 10-s = 0.5 cp 58

The bed thickness is calculated to be
10 x 1 l-l’ = 1.2 4rr(2.5)(0.16) x 3 x 1O-5 = 48.57 c m = 1.59 m


Permeability from Cylindrical Buildup

The time parameter, t + At/At, for this FMT test was tabulated. The cylindrical buildup (Horner) plot for this test is plotted on Fig. A-3. Extrapolation of the linear data indicates a formation pressure, p* = 3947.6 psi. The slope of the linear portion of the data is m, = 198 psi& cle. For permeability from cylindrical buildup, Eq. 19 is

which, for the data of this FMT test, becomes k, = 88.4 = 0.18 md

Time Estimate for Sampling

An estimate of the time required to retrieve a lo-liter (2.64-gallon) sample may be obtained by using Eq. 2 to estimate the time per gallon. t= 63.1 x Appt qpt x 4 For the FMT test of Fig. A-l,
FIGURE A-3 Cylindrical buildup plot.

= 3930 - 900 = 3030 psi = 3930 psi (sample is taken against an air cushion chamber) = 1.25 cm3/sec



and hence, the time in minutes required per gallon is estimated as 63.1 x 3030 = 38.9 min/gal t= 1.25 x 3930 and 2.64 gal x 38.9 min = 102.7 min (or 1 hr, 42.7 min) to fill a lo-liter (2.64-gal) tank.


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