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Fines-Migration Assisted Oil & Gas Recovery

Prof Pavel Bedrikovetsky, Australian School of Petroleum

Time: Monday, 15th April 2013, 4:00pm Venue: Tyree Energy Building, LG03 Abstract:
Fines migration is the most common formation damage mechanism that often challenges the economic viability of petroleum development projects. The phenomenon was widely reported for production and injection wells, drilling, waterflooding and pressure depletion with water support. It is explained by lifting of the reservoir fines, their migration and pore plugging with consequent permeability decline. We introduce a maximum retention function for fines that models the fines mobilization, allowing interpreting corefloods, analyzing well impairment history and predicting well behavior. Several laboratory and field studies are presented validating the approach. The recent field study presented shows how to use coreflood, Z-potential and SEM data along with well history for reliable prediction of productivity decline, its prevention and mitigation. The traditional view of fines migration is that it should be avoided because of its detrimental effect on reservoir permeability. However, the permeability decline effect provides a relatively simple method for water mobility control. We show the laboratory-data-based cases, where fines-assisted low salinity waterflood results in significant increase of the reservoir sweep due to fines lifting and permeability decline in the swept zone, if compared with normal waterflooding. Injection of fresh water bank into watered-up wells decelerates the invaded water and significantly decreases water production in oil and gas fields. Injection of fresh water near to oil/gas-water contact yields water coning decrease. The main idea of the lecture is that the natural or deliberately induced fines migration may often assist in oil and gas production and recovery.

Pavel is Professor of Petroleum Engineering at the University of Adelaide. He authors a seminal book on reservoir engineering and 170 papers in international journals and SPE. His research covers formation damage, EOR and unconventional energy resources. He holds MSc in Applied Mathematics, PhD in Fluid Mechanics and DSc in Reservoir Engineering from Russian Oil-Gas University. In 1991-1994 he was a Visiting Professor at Delft University of Technology and at Imperial College of Science and Technology. He boasts 35-year industrial experience in Russia, Europe, Brazil and Australia. He served as Section Chairman, short course instructor and Program Committee member at numerous SPE Conferences. He was 2008-2009 SPE Distinguished Lecturer.