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IADC/SPE 81621

Reservoir Criteria for Selecting Underbalanced Drilling Candidates
Hongjie Xiong and Dan Shan, Schlumberger Data and Consulting Services, SPE
Copyright 2003, IADC/SPE Underbalanced Technology Conference and Exhibition
This paper was prepared for presentation at the IADC/SPE Underbalanced Technology
Conference and Exhibition held in Houston, Texas, U.S.A., 25–26 March 2003.
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Abstract
Candidate selection is the key to the success of underbalanced
drilling (UBD) projects. It is a question yet to be answered
why sometimes UBD significantly improves productivity
compared with conventional overbalanced drilling (OBD)
practices but sometimes doesn’t. To answer this question, we
have performed an extensive reservoir engineering study to
understand the mechanisms of productivity improvement from
UBD. A single-well numerical model has been built that
simulates the UBD process and the OBD process (while taking
into account drilling filtration invasion, mud cake, and
permanent formation damage) and their impact on production
under a variety of reservoir conditions. Production rates are
predicted for both UBD and OBD cases. Then, an incremental
net present value (NPV) model has been used to analyze the
economic benefits of UBD operations (if any) for all study
cases. This paper describes our study methodology, models,
simulation results, and analysis results and summarizes the
reservoir criteria for successful UBD operations.
Reservoir properties play the most important role in the
success of UBD operations. The study clearly demonstrates
that UBD works for some reservoirs but not for all reservoirs.
The study results provide a set of reservoir criteria that can be
used as guidelines to choose potential UBD candidates.
Introduction
Underbalanced drilling (UBD) is a drilling operation in which
the hydrostatic head of drilling fluid is less than formation
pore pressure. Formation damage caused by conventional
overbalanced drilling (OBD) can be reduced or eliminated
with UBD, which may maintain original formation
productivity. Formation damage mechanisms1,2 that may result
from drilling operations and reduce productivity include
External drilling fluid/mud filtration invasion.
Fines migration.
Phase trapping.

Chemical incompatibility of invading fluid with the
in-situ rock matrix and in-situ fluids.
Near-wellbore wettability alteration and surface
adsorption effect.
Though majorities of the formation damages happen only
in OBD operations, phase trapping can happen in both OBD
and UBD operations. Phase trapping happens when water- or
oil-based drilling mud filters into the formation in the nearwellbore region because of leakoff during overbalanced
drilling operations or due to spontaneous imbibition in some
situations during underbalanced drilling operations. Phase
trapping can result in permanent entrapment of a portion or all
of the invading fluid, causing adverse relative permeability
effects and reducing oil or gas permeability in the nearwellbore regions.
There are four major drivers for UBD operations:
Lost circulation.
Differential sticking.
Rate of penetration and bit life problems.
Formation damage.
In the case of lost circulation, stuck pipe, and hard drilling,
UBD is easily justified as a preferred operation, but it is
difficult to quantify the reduction of formation damage and the
productivity improvement from UBD.
An analytical model has been used in previous work3 to
estimate the productivity index (PI) between UBD and OBD
cases, with different skin factors, when a dynamic filtration
process is not in the picture. The model is only suitable for a
certain flow regime.
In this study, we have employed a numerical simulation
method that considers formation damage mechanisms like
drilling filtration invasion, mud cake, spontaneous imbibition,
and permanent formation damage to investigate the
productivity improvement mechanism by using UBD. Also,
investigation is done to find suitable formation conditions in
which UBD is a better choice to develop a reservoir.
Production rates are predicted for both UBD and OBD
cases. Then, an incremental net present value (NPV) model is
built to compare the economic benefits of UBD operations,
from which one can easily determine if UBD wells perform
better than OBD wells for given reservoir conditions.
The purpose of this study is to understand the UBD
productivity improvement mechanisms; build a series of
productivity index models (PI models) for different reservoir
conditions; and build UBD candidate selection methods
including an economic evaluation model.
Study cases include homogeneous reservoirs and natural
fractured reservoirs; four different reservoir fluids (dry gas,

a single horizontal well model is built to evaluate the PI of overbalanced drilling and underbalanced drilling processes under a variety of reservoir conditions. The PI is defined as the production rate divided by pressure drop. n n −1 t =0 t =0 ∑ (∆NPV) = ∑ (∆NPV) + Where: ∆NPV i n ∆CumQgas ∆CumQoil $gas $oil $gas × (∆CumQgas)n (1 + i)n + $oil × (∆CumQoil )n (1 + i)n (4) = Net present value difference between UBD and OBD = Discount rate = Time step = Cumulative gas production difference between UBD and OBD for the time period = Cumulative oil production difference between UBD and OBD for the time period = Gas price = Oil price In this study. wet gas/condensate. Methodology The overall study methodology is shown in Fig. drilling fluid – mud filtrate is injected for several days before production under an overbalanced pressure.2 H. quantified productivity improvement becomes an important factor in the evaluation of the economical feasibility of UBD projects. porosities. fluid viscosity. and permanent formation damage. such as permeability. which takes into account the damage mechanism. reservoir thickness. Permanent damage is simulated by reducing permeability and porosity in the invaded zone as the function of the distance from wellbore. In this study.5 IADC/SPE 81621 which is the difference between average reservoir pressure and flowing bottomhole pressure. PI D = tD = A 141. Thus. Fig. However. Productivity Mechanism Study. A reservoir simulation software package is used to simulate all scenarios and analyze the productivity improvement from UBD. In the UBD cases we assume no filtration invasion during drilling but spontaneous imbibition if any. XIONG AND D. relative permeability. which consists of two major components: productivity and economical evaluation. initial water saturations. Then. we use an incremental NPV model defined in Equation 4. models. PI = q p − p wf (1) The predicted PI is affected by many factors. porosities. which establish the possible cost difference between UBD and OBD operations. This study covers homogeneous reservoirs and natural fractured reservoirs. Once the UBD candidate passes the evaluation process. Economical Evaluation. the discount rate is 10%. and overbalance pressures (Table 1). four different reservoir fluids (dry gas. Cost involved in the UBD operations varies with each situation. and different permeabilities. economics must be considered to qualify a UBD candidate. Other reservoir properties are listed in Table 2. we must carefully consider many factors. wellbore stability and operation feasibility. This paper describes our study methodology. However. the paper summarizes the reservoir criteria for successful UBD operations.2 × µB × × PI kk r h 2πrw Lwell 0. However. etc. 2. and different permeabilities. Dimensionless PI (PID) and dimensionless time (tD) presented in the following equations simplify the procedure but still include the effects of the reservoir and fluid properties. Our simulation process for OBD scenarios considers three formation damage mechanisms: filtration invasion. Therefore. Estimating the cost difference between UBD and OBD for a given reservoir is beyond the scope of this study. To model the filtration invasion process. and analysis results. A small skin factor is set up to simulate mud cake during the production process. skin factor. This paper focuses on the last two modules — PI calculation and economical evaluation. The PI is calculated for those cases with a variety of reservoir properties. formation factor. production rates are predicted for both UBD and OBD cases. simulation results. initial water saturations. After setting up the simulation model. the final qualification of a UBD candidate depends on the economical feasibility study results. UBD Candidate Selection When evaluating the feasibility of drilling in an underbalanced mode. . dimensionless analysis provides a simple way to describe the productivity trend with different reservoir properties and fluid properties. The gas and oil price are respectively $3/Mscf and $21/STB. Even though UBD has many advantages over OBD. the production improvement must be investigated. 1 illustrates possible steps and modules for the process of UBD candidate selection. mud cake. the project must be economical so that the possibly increased cost can be offset by potential increase of production. reservoir pressure gradients. and overbalance pressures. SHAN wet gas/condensate. black oil and dead oil). black oil and dead oil).0002637 × kk r t φµct rw 2 (2) (3) Where: µ B = = k kr h A = = = = = = = = = Lwell φ Ct rw t Viscosity (cp) Formation factor (rb/STB for rb/mscf for gas) Absolute permeability (md) Endpoint relative permeability Pay thickness (ft) Reservoir drainage area (ft2) Well length (ft) Porosity Total compressibility (1/psi) Wellbore radius (ft) Time (hr) oil. reservoir pressure gradients.

the fluid is a single phase of oil in the reservoir. 5. The following sections analyze and discuss the numerical simulation results. However.9) to cell (19. and 15% initial water saturation. 17 and 18 show gas production rates and incremental NPV for a gas condensate reservoir with 10-md permeability.000 ft (other length of horizontal section includes 1.000 ft and 2. the fluid exists as a single phase of gas. In the dead oil reservoir. The gas-water relative permeability curve is shown in Fig. The UBD case significantly improves the production in this scenario. 12. Grid cells are refined around the well to capture the dynamic flow. such as dry gas. 15% porosity and 60% initial water saturation. The higher the incremental NPV. for low-permeability gas condensate reservoirs. for a given reservoir condition. and 13 show gas production rates. After that point.IADC/SPE 81621 RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES We assume that there is no production operation cost difference between UBD and OBD cases. 6 and 7. dead oil. Figs. The gas production rate decreases and the incremental NPV increases as the overbalanced pressure (OBP) increases. underbalanced drilling may not have much advantage in this scenario. There is a maximum incremental NPV in the early time period (around 250 days). the liquids condense in the reservoir. 21 and 22 show oil production rates and incremental NPV for a dead oil reservoir with 100md permeability. 20% porosity and 15% initial water saturation.9). Therefore.1 md permeability. Thus. In a dry gas reservoir. 23 and 24 show the simulation results for dead oil reservoir with 1-md permeability. an incremental NPV should include the extra cost (if any) due to UBD operations for a given time period required to make the UBD project economical.200 cells (30 × 30 × 18). The oil viscosity is about 100 times higher than the gas viscosity. 2. The cell size is shown in Table 3. The Leverett J function is used to specify different capillary pressure curves. The production difference between UBD and OBD is much smaller compared to the case with . and black oil. Later in production. and incremental NPV for a dry gas reservoir with 10-md permeability. The differences of gas production and incremental NPV between UBD and OBD are much smaller than high permeability reservoir cases. 20% porosity and 15% initial water saturation. One-half of the simulation grids are shown in Fig. The incremental NPV can be estimated with cumulative production differences for a given time period. gas condensate. 10% porosity and 60% initial water saturation) show that UBD may not be a good choice. Model Setup A 3D rectangular grid is built for a single horizontal well model. 10. The incremental NPV difference is not significant. Figs. Figs. Compared to the previous scenario with high permeability. similar trends can be observed in these figures. The composition and phase of the fluid remains unchanged. for a low permeability reservoir. Figs.1-md permeability. Obviously. 10% porosity and 65% initial water saturation. Overbalanced pressure does not have much impact on cumulative production. A summary description of the procedure of this study is shown in Fig. Gas Condensate Reservoir. Fig. Dry Gas Reservoir. one can easily decide if a UBD operation is better prior to the detailed economic evaluation process. The oil-water and gas-oil relative permeability curves are used. Hysteresis is utilized to simulate the imbibition process. the benefit of UBD over OBD starts to decrease owing to reservoir depletion. 4 illustrates the gas formation factors and gas viscosity as a function of reservoir pressure. 15. This reservoir produces much more oil from the UBD case than the OBD cases. The maximum incremental NPV occurs at the early stage of production. UBD cannot significantly improve productivity over OBD. Figs. In a gas condensate reservoir. Considering the possible spontaneous imbibition during UBD operations and the current stimulation technology. 3. Dead Oil Reservoir. Wet gas and live oil properties are shown in Figs. the better candidate the reservoir is for UBD. The dead oil properties are shown in Table 4. 14. so the mobility for the oil phase is 100 times lower than the gas phase. The length of the horizontal well is 3. the benefit of UBD over OBD decreases due to reservoir depletion. By using this approach. 11. oil formation factors and oil viscosity are listed in Table 5 as a function of pressure and solution gas ratio. as shown in Fig.15. 19 and 20 (the simulation results for gas condensate reservoir with 0. Pc(Sw) k φ J = Capillary pressure saturation function = Permeability = Porosity = Leverett J function 3 Result Analysis and Discussion Several hundred cases have been numerically simulated for different reservoirs and drilling operations. 8 and 9. the fluid exists at initial conditions as a single phase of gas but when reservoir pressure drops below the dew point pressure. cumulative production. Pc = J * σ cosθ * φ k (5) Where. The oil-water and gas-oil relative permeability curves are shown in Figs. The cumulative gas production decreases as overbalanced pressure increases. The horizontal well is completed from cell (5. The incremental NPV shows great economic benefits. The grid model consists of 16. and 16 show the simulation results for dry gas reservoirs with 0. 25% porosity. In a black oil reservoir. OBD with hydraulic fracturing treatment may be better for a low permeability gas reservoir. The UBD case produces much more gas than the OBD cases in the early stage of production.000 ft). The oil-water relative permeability curve is used in the dead oil reservoir.15. Then we study the behavior of different reservoir fluid types. Figs.

some formation damage mechanisms (such as particle plugging-in) result in the permanent reduction of permeability and pore volume in the invaded region of drilling fluid. in order to avoid damaging the fractured reservoir. the drilling fluid does more filtration damage to the formation with the longer exposure time and thus the PI decreases for this case. 15%. which means that the real PI ratio of two cases with well length of 3. However. Once the injection pressure is higher than reservoir pressure. 27 and 28 show the simulation results for a black oil reservoir with 1-md permeability.750 psi . Figs. Overbalanced pressure does not have too much effect on the production. The time the formation is exposed to drilling mud affects the extent of the formation damage and depth of invasion in the OBD process. Later. Dimensionless analysis provides a simple way to describe the productivity trend with different reservoir and fluid properties. two lines are separated. cleaned up. drilling fluid quickly invades the fracture. which is shown in Table 6. At the steady state. The deeper damage depth due to higher overbalanced pressure results in worse PI. XIONG AND D. The permeability and porosity are reduced around the wellbore for different OBD cases by tracking drilling fluid flow. the PI decreases with higher overbalanced pressure. 33 and 34 show the ratio of UBD PI to OBD PI for different permeability reservoirs. and 35% over average initial reservoir pressure) are used in OBD cases to compare with the UBD process.000 ft and 1. in addition to filtration damage and mud cake. blocks it and decreases permeability.000-ft horizontal length is higher than one with 3. The region in which dimensionless PI values are constant with time is defined as the steady state. In the previous OBD cases. 36 represent OBD cases with 16 days exposure time. Figs. The reservoir with higher permeability and lower initial water saturation yields the larger gap of the dimensionless PI between UBD and OBD operations. The UBD produces much more oil than the OBD cases. Dimensionless Productivity Index and Dimensionless Time. it is critical to understand the damage mechanism for OBD cases in order to evaluate the productivity. 15% porosity and 60% initial water saturation. 25 and 26 show oil production rates and incremental NPV for a black oil reservoir with 100 md permeability. In this scenario. The Impact of Horizontal Well Length.000 ft for the dead oil reservoir and dry gas reservoir. the fracture permeability is reduced in the invaded zone by drilling fluid. Underbalanced drilling may not be recommended for this scenario.000 to 20 at the beginning of production as overbalanced pressure increases from 50 psi to 1. The incremental NPV difference could be significant. Figs. and 1. However. The Impact of OBD Pressures. which is affected by many factors. Figs. Since the dimensionless PI considers the well length in the equation. The figures show that most productivity improvement from UBD occurs at the transient state. the model is set up with 8 days injection to simulate the filtration invasion damage. However. The Impact of OBD Time. and the solid lines 8 days. Thus. To simulate OBD process in a naturally fractured system. and the dimensionless PI of a well with a 1.750 psi. a UBD operation is recommended.1%. the effect of overbalanced pressure on the PI is dependent on reservoir properties. the permanent damage is also included. Overbalanced pressure values do not have much effect on the production. Figs. With higher initial water saturation.4 H. For a reservoir with higher permeability and lower initial water saturation. which widens the PI ratio gap between UBD and OBD. 750 psi. UBD may not be a good choice.000 ft and 1. 29 and 30 illustrate the simulation results for the naturally fractured reservoir with drilling filtration and permanent damage. Obviously. Black Oil Reservoir. Figs. the production difference between UBD and OBD is coming from permanent formation damage. Productivity index means the ability of a well to flow with a certain drawdown pressure. The dashed lines in Fig. because the filtration invasion damage might have been The Impact of Permanent Damage. Fig. Several cases are simulated to study the effects of the horizontal well length on the PI. For such conditions. The difference of dimensionless PI between UBD and OBD is slightly higher for . Naturally Fractured Reservoir. 35 illustrates that the PI decreases with permanent damage. which makes this reservoir a good UBD candidate. Since higher overbalanced drilling pressure causes more severe filtration damage. single-permeability system. 25% porosity and 15% initial water saturation. the PI ratio is reduced from 1.000 ft. 31 and 32 show the dimensionless PI as a function of dimensionless time for the dead oil reservoir and the dry gas reservoir. the production difference between the UBD and OBD case is much smaller. Both figures illustrate that the dimensionless PI of UBD cases follows the same trend regardless of different reservoir properties. Obviously. UBD has a big advantage for a naturally fractured reservoir. The porosity and permeability are independently defined for the matrix and fracture. Therefore. three overbalanced pressures (50 psi. for 1 md and 60% initial water saturation. Fluid flow through the reservoir takes place only in the fracture network with the matrix block acting as its source. For the case with 100 md and 15% initial water saturation. The production process has a skin factor of 2 to account for mud cake. OBD with higher overbalanced pressure does more damage to the formation. 37 and 38 show the dimensionless PI comparison of the well length between 3. the PI ratio changes from 7 to 2 at the beginning of production. dimensionless PI of the OBD cases has more changes according to different reservoir properties. two lines are combined together in the early stage of production. In this study.000 ft is 3. A naturally fractured reservoir is simulated with a dual-porosity. The matrix cells have a water-oil capillary pressure while the fractures cells have zero capillary pressure. which cause water imbibitions from fractures to matrix. The incremental NPV difference could be very significant. SHAN IADC/SPE 81621 lower initial water saturation and high permeability.

The final qualification step should be a comprehensive study of productivity and economical evaluation as shown in this paper. after which the benefits of UBD over OBD start to decrease because of reservoir depletion. Such an operation may result in less hydrocarbon production than the case with lower drilling pressure. a laboratory formation damage mechanism study is needed to provide better information that is close to the real situation. However. rb/mscf for gas) Total compressibility (1/psi) Pay thickness (ft) Discount rate Leverett J function Absolute permeability (md) Endpoint relative permeability Gas relative permeability Water relative permeability Oil relative permeability (oil + water) Oil relative permeability (oil + gas + connate water) Well length (ft) Time step . 39 represents the UBD process with imbibition process. The paper summarizes methodology. An incremental NPV model has been built to easily identify economically feasible UBD candidates. UBD is a good choice for reservoirs with high permeability and low initial water saturation. Permanent formation damage and longer drilling mud exposure time do more damage to the formation. the models. However. If the initial water saturation is higher than connate water saturation. productivity from UBD is much higher than through OBD. The reservoir conditions criteria for UBD candidate selection are summarized below. however. One must carefully study reservoir conditions and possible formation damage mechanisms resulting from UBD and OBD operations. UBD candidate selection is complicated. The study clearly demonstrates that UBD will improve productivity for most but not for all reservoirs. The dashed line in Fig. such as the range of drilling filtration and permeability reduction from OBD operation. Our on-going study will further investigate other situations and improve productivity models. For a high permeability reservoir. Recommendations The simulation study shows the effects of reservoir properties on the production improvement of UBD. the production difference between UBD and OBD is not significant. The PI is reduced by a factor of four from the UBD case without the consideration of imbibition process. A series of reservoir criteria has been summarized to select candidates for UBD. OBD operations combined with conventional fracturing treatments may be a better choice for lower permeability reservoirs. there is a maximum point of cumulative production difference and incremental NPV. and study results. For a reservoir with lower initial water saturation than connate water saturation. higher overbalanced drilling pressure results in more severe formation damage by drilling filtration. Summary. For a low permeability reservoir with high capillary pressure. Formation damage mechanisms possibly created by OBD operations are the key factors. Generally speaking. which reduces the well productivity for OBD cases. In the OBD case. Lab results2 show that increasing the underbalanced pressure reduces permeability damage due to imbibition process. particle invasion. production benefits from UBD. For most situations. productivity is improved from UBD operation by reducing or eliminating formation damage. Reservoir capillary pressure and relative permeability also play an important role in the UBD productivity improvement. real field data will be applied to calibrate PI models. UBD may not be a good choice for a low permeability reservoir with high capillary pressure due to the imbibition process. Higher initial water saturation also reduces permeability damage resulted from imbibition process. A naturally fractured reservoir is a good candidate for UBD operations because drilling filtration easily blocks high permeability fractures around wellbore for OBD. Reservoir permeability and initial water saturation are critical to determine benefits from UBD operations.IADC/SPE 81621 RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES the short horizontal well length. drilling and completion practices.2 This imbibition process reduces the productivity of UBD processes because of phase trapping and relative permeability effects. The simple criteria for determining whether UBD is a good choice are given here. and other possible formation damages. drilling fluids block the area around the wellbore. spontaneous imbibition process occurs in the UBD process. Overbalanced pressure value has little effect on the production difference. UBD may not be a good choice when a strong imbibition process exists in a reservoir. The simulation results clearly illustrate the impact of reservoir properties on productivity. thus. UBD may not be an optimal choice for a low permeability. more hydrocarbons can be produced through UBD rather than OBD. However. It seems that the short horizontal well length benefits more from UBD in term of productivity by length. Nomenclature A = B = Ct h i J k kr krg krw krow krog = = = = = = = = = = Lwell n = = Reservoir drainage area (ft2) Formation factor (rb/STB for oil. due to significant variance of different reservoir properties. the well with the longer horizontal well length produces more hydrocarbons. If applicable. Imbibition Process in UBD. high-initial-water-saturation reservoir. 5 Conclusions Overall.

1996. SHAN NPV OBD OBP Pc(Sw) PI PID Pwf q = = = = = = = = = rw Rs Swi t tD UBD µ φ ∆CumQgas = = = = = = = = = ∆CumQoil = P ∆NPV = $gas $oil = = Net present value ($) Overbalance drilling Overbalance pressure Average reservoir pressure (psi) Capillary pressure saturation function Productivity index (stb/d/psi) Dimensionless productivity index Flowing bottomhole pressure (psi) Flow rate (stb/d for liquid. and Thomas. 30% 15% 45% 60% UBD OBD with overbalanced pressure (OBP): 50 psi (1% over avg.. lbm/ft 3 Water density. Leising. ft Vertical perm/Horizontal perm.B: “Formation Damage and Horizontal Wells – A Productivity Killer?” paper SPE 37138 presented at the International Conference on Horizontal Well Technology. Todd. M. Hill.750 psi (35% over avg. and Economides. UK.454 E+00 md x 1. F. L.1 md.. F. Oct. lbm/ft 3 Oil density. 1/psi Water compressibility. 20% 100 md.590 E-01 ft x 3. RB/STB Wellbore diameter. R.3 1. 1994. mscf/d for gas) Wellbore radius (ft) Dissolved gas oil ratio Initial water saturation Time (hr) Dimensionless time Underbalanced drilling Viscosity (cp) Porosity Cumulative gas production difference between UBD and OBD for the time period Cumulative oil production difference between UBD and OBD for the time period Incremental net present value between UBD and OBD Gas price Oil price Acknowledgement The authors would like to thank Schlumberger management for their support for the project and the approval of this publication.. 10% 1 md. 1993. London.1 5150 2000 0. 1994. reservoir pressure) 750 psi (15% over avg. psi 3 Gas density.B.048 E-01 ft3 x 2. G.” paper SPE 36753 presented at the SPE ATCE. 1996. 1820. cp Water formation factor. Alberta. Feb. and Pierson. B. reservoir pressure) 1. Nov. Lafayette. A.0658 45 63 5. IADC/SPE 81621 Metric Conversion Factors cp x 1.: Petroleum Production Systems. E. NJ.840 E-06 = = = = = = = = Pa s m3 m m3 kg µm2 kpa m3/s TABLE 1—STUDY CASES UNDER A VARIETY OF RESERVOIR CONDITIONS Reservoir fluid types Reservoir Permeability and Porosity Initial water saturation Drilling pressure conditions Overbalanced time Formation damage Dry gas reservoir Gas condensate reservoir Black oil reservoir Dead oil reservoir Homogeneous reservoir Naturally fractured reservoir 0. psi Flowing bottomhole pressure. Prentice Hall Inc. 25-27.B.000 E-03 bbl x 1. J. J. D. C. 3. E. C. 4. CO.. and Thomas.0E-6 0.A: “Underbalanced Drilling With Coiled Tubing and Well Productivity. References 1. D. Evans. L. XIONG AND D. and Rike.” paper SPE 28870 presented at the SPE European Petroleum Conference.J. 15% 10 md.832 E-02 lbm x 0.03 0. 7-10. md/md Original pressure. 25% 1000 md . Thomas. Bennion.0E-6 3. LA. Upper Saddle River. Oct. E. Canada.895 E+00 STB/d x 1.6 H. 1/psi Water viscosity.B: “Underbalance Drilling of Horizontal Wells: Does It Really Eliminate Formation Damage?” paper SPE 27352 presented at the SPE International Symposium on Formation Damage Control. Denver. D. ft 100 0. 5. 6-9. reservoir pressure) 8 days 16 days Filtration damage Mud cake Permanent permeability reduction from any formation damage mechanisms TABLE 2 – RESERVOIR INPUT DATA Net pay. Economides. K.013 E-03 psi x 6. Bennion. lbm/ft Rock compressibility.: “Horizontal Well IPR Calculations.5 . 2.

0870 1.1200 0.665 1600 1.03 1.1—The Module Of UBD Candidate Selection A n a ly z e th e e ffe c t o f p e rm e a b ility .00E-06 2 0.1165 0.500 1200 1.1 8.0630 1. 1/psi µ o. rb/STB Co.06 0.92 5600 1.0001 In v e s tig a te re s e rv o ir m o d e ls a n d b u ild s im u la tio n a n d a n a ly s is m o d e ls Damage Evaluation Quick Disqualifier Wellbore Stability Evaluation Operation Feasibility Evaluation Comprehensive Evaluator UBD? PI calculator Production Improvement Evaluator UBD? P re d ic t p ro d u c tio n ra te NPV Evaluator UBD? C a lc u la te P I & In c re m e n ta l N P V D im e n s io n le s s A n a ly s is Fig.0380 1.0120 1.1115 0. fo rm a tio n d a m a g e a n d im b ib itio n p ro c e ss o n P I im p ro v e m e n t fro m U B D S e t c a n d id a te s e le c tio n c rite ria fo r U B D Fig.92 5200 1.000 1.1210 0.1100 0.94 1.IADC/SPE 81621 RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES TABLE 3–GRID CELL DIMENSIONS Index 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 DX (ft) 1.00 1.17 0.92 6200 1. 1/psi 4.95 1.0510 1.390 3600 1. 2—The Flowchart Of Study Procedure 7 .0255 1.1300 0.11 0.499 DZ (ft) 20 10 6 4 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 6 10 20 TABLE 5—OIL PROPERTIES FOR BLACK OIL RESERVOIR Live Oil PVT Properties (Dissolved Gas) Rs (mscf/STB) P (psia) Bo (rb/STB) µo (cp) 0.130 2800 1.92 4800 1. O B D tim e .600 4400 1.335 800 1.92 TABLE 6 – PERMEABILITY AND POROSITY IN THE MATRIX AND FRACTURE Permeability (md) Porosity (%) Matrix 1 15 Fracture 100 1 TABLE 4—OIL PROPERTIES FOR DEAD OIL RESERVOIR Reference Pressure psia Bo.1100 0.1255 0.0750 1.92 6800 1.270 3200 1. cp Viscosibility.000 DY (ft) 1499 800 400 200 100 50 20 10 6 4 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 6 10 20 50 100 200 400 800 1.0985 0. o v e rb a la n c e p re s s u re .14 0.98 1. in itia l w a te r s a tu ra tio n .165 400 1.08 0.985 2400 1.000 600 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 200 400 800 1.828 2000 1.500 4000 1.

022 krg 0.1 0 1000 2000 3000 4000 Pressure (psi) 0 0 0.4 0.9 krow Relative Permeability 0.6 0.9 krg 0.Oil 7 0.8 1 Water Saturation Fig.6 Oil Saturation Fig. SHAN IADC/SPE 81621 Water . 5—Gas-Water Relative Permeability Curve 0.01 8000 Pressure (psia) 0.1 1 0 0 0 1000 2000 3000 4000 5000 6000 7000 0 0.4 0.026 µg 3 0.8 1 0.2 0 0.4 0. 4—Dry Gas PVT Properties 18 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.7 0.8 H.014 0.8 5 Gas Viscosity (cp) Gas Formation Factor (RB/MSCF) 1 6 0.8 Relative Permability 0.6 Water Saturation Fig.05 0.1 8 6 µg 4 0.6 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.1 0 0 0.Oil 1 krw 0.3 0.15 Bg 12 OGR 10 0.4 0.018 Bg 2 Relative Permeability 4 0. 7—Gas-Oil Relative Permeability Curve Fig.3 0.4 14 0.2 16 Gas Formation Factor (rb/mscf) 1 krw 0.5 0.9 0. 8—Wet Gas PVT Properties 5000 6000 0 7000 Oil Gas Ratio (STB/Mscf) / Gas Viscosity (cp) Gas . 6—Water-Oil Relative Permeability Curve Fig.2 0.03 krog 0.6 0.Water .8 1 Fig.7 0.2 0.5 0. XIONG AND D.8 0. 3—Half 3-D simulation grid model Gas .4 0.3 2 0.

000.5 0 500 1000 1500 2000 2500 3000 3500 4000 4500 0 0 5000 1 10 100 1000 10000 Tim e (Days) Pressure (psi) Fig.4 1. 0.8 1.0 $20.000. 10—Capillary Pressure Curve 7000 Qg (UBD) 4500000 6000 Qg (UBD) Qg (OBP 50psi) Qg (OBP 50 psi) Gas Production Rate (MSCF/day) Gas Production Rate (MSCF/day) 4000000 Qg (OBP 750 psi) 3500000 Qg (OBP 1750 psi) 3000000 2500000 2000000 1500000 1000000 Qg (OBP 750psi) 5000 Qg (OBP 1750psi) 4000 3000 2000 1000 500000 0 1 0 1 10 100 1000 10000 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Tim e (Days) Fig.0 Imbibition (10 md) Drainage (100 md) Imbibition (100 md) 100.7 Cumulative Gas Production (MSCF) 1.4 1.2 0.2 0.9 0.5 1.000. 9—Live Oil PVT Properties Fig. 12—Cumulative Gas Production (Dry Gas.0 $40.4 0.6 Cum Qg (UBD) Rs 300000000 1. 10 md.1 md) $140.000 Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Imbibition (0. 14—Gas Production Rate Comparison (Dry Gas.4 0.6 0.2 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Water Saturation Fig. 10 md. 13—Incremental NPV Comparison (Dry Gas.3 9 350000000 Gas Oil Ratio (Mscf/STB) Oil Formation Factor (rb/Mscf) / Oil Viscosity (cp) IADC/SPE 81621 Cum Qg (OBP 50 psi) Cum Qg (OBP 750 psi) 250000000 Cum Qg (OBP 1750 psi) 200000000 150000000 100000000 50000000 0.0 Drainage (0.0 Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) Drainage (10 md) 1000. Swi = 15%) Fig.000.000 $100.000 $0 0.000.2 1.000.000 10.1 1 1 0. Swi = 65%) .000 $60.8 Bo 0.6 0. Swi = 15%) $180.0 Incremental NPV ($) Capillary Pressure (psi) Imbibition (1 md) $120.2 µo 1.8 0.000 Drainage (1 md) 10000.6 0.000.1 md.000.000. 11—Gas Production Rate Comparison (Dry Gas.1 1 0 0.000 Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) 100000. 10 md.8 1 10 1.1 md) $160.RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES 1.000 $80. Swi = 15%) Fig.000 1.

Swi = 15%) $1.000. 0.000 Qg (OBP 50psi) Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) Qg (OBP 750psi) 50000 Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) $500.000.000 Qg (OBP 1750psi) Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) 40000 Incremental NPV ($) Gas Production Rate (MSCF/Day 60000 30000 20000 $400.000 $1. 18—Incremental NPV Comparison (Gas Condensate. 10 md. Swi = 60%) Qg (UBD) $600. 10 md.000 $800. 15—Cumulative Gas Production (Dry Gas.000 Cum Qg (OBP 750psi) 6000000 Incremental NPV ($) Cumulative Gas Production (MSCF) IADC/SPE 81621 Cum Qg (OBP 1750psi) 5000000 4000000 3000000 Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) $100.000.000. 16—Incremental NPV Comparison (Dry Gas.000 $1.000.000 $300.000 1000000 $20.000. 0. Swi = 60%) .000 $60.000. XIONG AND D.800. 0.600.000 $600.000 0 1 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) $0 1 Fig. Swi = 15%) 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig.000 $80. Swi = 65%) Fig.000 Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Cum Qg (OBP 50psi) 7000000 $120.400.1 md.1 md. 0.000 2000000 $40.1 md.000 $200.000 1400 Qg (UBD) Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) 1200 Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) Gas Production Rate (MSCF/Day) Incremental NPV ($) $1.000.000.000 10000 $100.000 $200.000 9000000 Cum Qg (UBD) 8000000 Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) $140. 19—Gas Production Rate Comparison (Gas Condensate.200. 17—Gas Production Rate Comparison (Gas Condensate.000 0 $0 1 10 100 1000 10000 1 10 100 Time (Days) 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig. 20—Incremental NPV Comparison (Gas Condensate. Swi = 65%) 70000 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig.000 Qg (OBP 50psi) Qg (OBP 750psi) 1000 Qg (OBP 1750psi) 800 600 400 200 $0 1 10 100 1000 10000 0 1 Time (Days) Fig.000 Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) $1. SHAN $160.10 H.000 $400.1 md.

1 md.000. 24—Incremental NPV Comparison (Dead Oil.000 30 $200. 23—Oil Production Rate Comparison (Dead Oil.000.000 Qo (OBP 50psi) $100.000 $60.000 0 1 $0 1 10 100 1000 10 10000 Time (Days) Fig. 21—Oil Production Rate Comparison (Dead Oil.000 $80. 100 md.000 20 $100.000 $300. Swi = 15%) 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig.000 Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Qo (UBD) Qo (OBP 750psi) 50 Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) $500.000 $40. 1 md. Swi = 15%) $700. Swi = 15%) Fig.000 Qo (OBP 50psi) Incremental NPV ($) Oil Production Rate (STB/Day) 60 Qo (OBP 1750psi) 40 $400.000.000.000. Swi = 60%) 250000 Qo (UBD) $120. Swi = 15%) .000.000 Qo (OBP 50psi) 160000 Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Qo (OBP 750psi) $120.000.000 40000 $20.000 Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) Qo (OBP 1750psi) 140000 Incremental NPV ($) Oil Production Rate (STB/Day) 11 120000 100000 80000 $100.000 $60.000 10 $0 1 0 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) 1 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig.000 Oil Production Rate (STB/Day) Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Incremental NPV ($) Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) $80.000 Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) 70 $600. 26—Incremental NPV Comparison (Black Oil.000.000 20000 $0 0 1 10 100 1000 1 10000 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Time (Days) Fig.000 60000 $40.000. 25—Oil Production Rate Comparison (Black Oil.000. 100 md.000. 100 md.IADC/SPE 81621 RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES 200000 $160.000.000. 22—Incremental NPV Comparison (Dead Oil. 100 md. Swi = 60%) Fig.000 200000 Qo (OBP 750psi) Qo (OBP 1750psi) 150000 100000 50000 $20.000 Qo (UBD) 180000 Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) $140.

000. 27—Oil Production Rate Comparison (Black Oil.000 $300. Swi = 15%) . 1 md. Swi = 60%) 1000000 Qo (UBD) Qo (OBP 50psi) Qo (OBP 750psi) 100000 Qo (OBP 1750psi) 10000 1000 100 1 10 100 1 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Time (Days) Incremental NPV ($) Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) $700. 30—Incremental NPV Comparison in the Naturally Fractured Reservoir (Black Oil.000 $0 0 1 10 100 1000 10000 Fig.000 140 Oil Production Rate (STB/Day) IADC/SPE 81621 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig. 1 md. 1 md.000 $150.000 $0 1 10 100 1000 10000 Time (Days) Fig.000 $200.12 H.000 Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) $300.000. Swi = 15%) Fig.000.000. XIONG AND D.000 20 $100.000 $50. SHAN $800. Swi = 60%) $400.000.000 160 Qo (OBP 50psi) 120 Qo (OBP 750psi) 100 Delt NPV (OBP 1750psi) $600.000.000 Delt NPV (OBP 50psi) $350.000 $250. 28—Incremental NPV Comparison (Black Oil. 1 md.000 Incremental NPV ($) Oil Production Rate (STB/Day) Delt NPV (OBP 750psi) Qo (UBD) Qo (OBP 1750psi) 80 60 $500.000 $100. 29—Oil Production Rate Comparison in the Naturally Fractured Reservoir (Black Oil.000.000 40 $200.000.000 $400.

0002637 × kk rg t 10MD-SW15-50psi 10MD-SW15-750psi 10MD-SW15-1750psi 10MD-SW45-UBD 10MD-SW45-50psi 10MD-SW45-750psi 10MD-SW45-1750psi φµ g c t rw 2 10MD-SW60-UBD 10MD-SW60-50psi 10MD-SW60-750psi 20000 10MD-SW60-1750psi 1MD-SW15-UBD Underbalanced Drilling 1MD-SW15-50psi 1MD-SW15-750psi 1MD-SW15-1750psi 1MD-SW45-UBD 1MD-SW45-50psi 15000 1MD-SW45-750psi Overbalanced Drilling 10000 1MD-SW45-1750psi 1MD-SW60-UBD 1MD-SW60-50psi 1MD-SW60-750psi 1MD-SW60-1750psi 0-1MD-SW15-UBD 0-1MD-SW15-50psi 0-1MD-SW15-750psi 5000 0-1MD-SW15-1750psi 0-1MD-SW45-UBD 0-1MD-SW45-50psi 0-1MD-SW45-750psi 0 1 10 100 1000 10000 100000 1000000 Dimensionless Time 10000000 100000000 1000000000 10000000000 0-1MD-SW45-1750psi 0-1MD-SW60-UBD 0-1MD-SW60-50psi 0-1MD-SW60-750psi 0-1MD-SW60-1750psi Fig.IADC/SPE 81621 RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES 40000 PI D = 35000 Dimensionless Productivity Index tD = 30000 141 .2 × µ o B o A × PI × kk ro h 2π rw × L well 0 . 32—Dimensionless Productivity Index for Dry Gas Reservoir 13 . 31—Dimensionless Productivity Index for Dead Oil Reservoir 10MD-SW15-UBD 30000 PI D = Dimensionless Productivity Index 25000 tD = 141 . 2 × µ g B g kk rg h A × PI × 2π rw × L well 0 .0002637 × kk ro t 2 φµ o c t rw 100MD-SW15-UBD 100MD-SW15-50psi 100MD-SW15-750psi 100MD-SW15-1750psi 100MD-SW45-UBD 100MD-SW45-50psi 100MD-SW45-750psi 100MD-SW45-1750psi 100MD-SW60-UBD 100MD-SW60-50psi 100MD-SW60-750psi 100MD-SW60-1750psi 10MD-SW15-UBD 10MD-SW15-50psi 10MD-SW15-750psi 10MD-SW15-1750psi 25000 Underbalanced Drilling 10MD-SW45-UBD 10MD-SW45-50psi 20000 10MD-SW45-750psi 10MD-SW45-1750psi 10MD-SW60-UBD 10MD-SW60-50psi 15000 Overbalanced Drilling 10000 5000 0 1 10 100 1000 10000 100000 1000000 10000000 100000000 1000000000 10000000000 Dimensionless Time 10MD-SW60-750psi 10MD-SW60-1750psi 1MD-SW15-UBD 1MD-SW15-50psi 1MD-SW15-750psi 1MD-SW15-1750psi 1MD-SW45-UBD 1MD-SW45-50psi 1MD-SW45-750psi 1MD-SW45-1750psi 1MD-SW60-UBD 1MD-SW60-50psi 1MD-SW60-750psi 1MD-SW60-1750psi Fig.

33—The Ratio of UBD PI to OBD PI for Dead Oil Reservoir With 100 md and 25% Porosity. 38—Dimensionless PI for Dry Gas Reservoir With 1 md and 45% Initial Water Saturation.) 16000 20000 10MD-SW45-UBD 18000 1MD-SW45-5000 10MD-SW45-50psi 10MD-SW45-50psi-wd 16000 10MD-SW45-750psi 14000 10MD-SW45-750psi-wd 12000 10MD-SW45-1750psi 10MD-SW45-1750psi-wd 10000 1MD-SW45-5000-SL 14000 8000 6000 4000 1MD-SW45-5200 Dimensionless Productivity Index Dimensionless Productivity Index 10000000 Dimensionless Time Dimensionless Time 1MD-SW45-5200-SL 12000 1MD-SW45-5900 1MD-SW45-5900-SL 10000 1MD-SW45-6900 1MD-SW45-6900-SL 8000 6000 4000 2000 2000 0 10 100 1000 10000 100000 1000000 10000000 100000000 Dimensionless Time Fig. (Solid Lines Represent UBD and OBD Cases.000 Ft. (Solid Lines Represent UBD and OBD Cases.000 ft. 37—Dimensionless PI for Dead Oil Reservoir With 10 md and 45% initial water saturation. 10000 1000000 10000000 100000000 Fig. Dashed Lines With The Well Length of 1. (Solid Lines Represent the Case With the Well Length of 3. Dashed Lines Represent OBD Cases With Longer Exposure Time to Drilling Mud.000 Ft. 34—The Ratio of UBD PI to OBD PI for Dead Oil Reservoir With 1 md and 15% Porosity. XIONG AND D. 36—Dimensionless PI for Dead Oil Reservoir With 10 md and 45% Initial Water Saturation. Dashed Lines Represent OBD Cases With Permanent Damage. Dashed Lines With The Well Length of 1.000 ft. SHAN 10000 100MD-SW15-UBD 100MD-SW15-50psi 100MD-SW15-750psi 100MD-SW15-1750psi 100MD-SW45-UBD 100MD-SW45-50psi 100MD-SW45-750psi 100MD-SW45-1750psi 100MD-SW60-UBD 100MD-SW60-50psi 100MD-SW60-750psi 100MD-SW60-1750psi PI (UBD) / PI (OBD) 1000 100 10 IADC/SPE 81621 20000 10MD-SW45-UBD 18000 Dimensionless Productivity Index 14 10MD-SW45-50psi 10MD-SW45-50psi-LT 16000 10MD-SW45-750psi 14000 10MD-SW45-750psi-LT 12000 10MD-SW45-1750psi 10MD-SW45-1750psi-LT 10000 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 1 1 10 100 1000 10000 100000 1000000 10000000 100000000 1E+09 10 1E+10 100 1000 Fig.H. 100000000 Fig.) 10MD-SW45-UBD 18000 Dimensionless Productivity Index PI (UBD) / PI (OBD) 100 100000 20000 1MD-SW15-UBD 1MD-SW15-50psi 1MD-SW15-750psi 1MD-SW15-1750psi 1MD-SW45-UBD 1MD-SW45-50psi 1MD-SW45-750psi 1MD-SW45-1750psi 1MD-SW60-UBD 1MD-SW60-50psi 1MD-SW60-750psi 1MD-SW60-1750psi 1000 10000 Dimensionless Time Dimensionless Time 10 10MD-SW45-UBD-SL 10MD-SW45-50psi 16000 10MD-SW45-50psi-SL 14000 10MD-SW45-750psi 10MD-SW45-750psi-SL 12000 10MD-SW45-1750psi 10000 10MD-SW45-1750psi-SL 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 1 1 10 100 1000 10000 100000 1000000 10000000 100000000 1E+09 10 1E+10 100 1000 10000 100000 1000000 Fig. 35—Dimensionless PI for Dead Oil Reservoir With 10 md and 45% Initial Water Saturation.) 0 1000 10000 100000 1000000 10000000 100000000 1000000000 Dimensionless Time Fig.) . (Solid Lines Represent The Case With The Well Length of 3.

39—Dimensionless PI For Dead Oil Reservoir With 10 md and 45% Initial Water Saturation. (Solid Lines Represent UBD and OBD Cases.) 15 .IADC/SPE 81621 RESERVOIR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING UNDERBALANCED DRILLING CANDIDATES 14000 10MD-SW15-UBD 10MD-SW15-UBD-IMB Dimensionless Productivity Index 12000 10MD-SW15-50psi 10000 10MD-SW15-750psi 10MD-SW15-1750psi 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 1000 10000 100000 1000000 10000000 100000000 1000000000 Dimensionless Time Fig. Dashed Lines Represent UBD Cases With Imbibition Process.