Guidelines for sand control completion technique and gravel size selection are presented. These new criteria are based primarily on reservoir sand size distribution. Emphasis is on formations with very high fines content and a wide distribution of grain sizes. Upon failure and/or particle movement, these formations can exhibit very high skins and reduced production capacity with traditional control methods. Guidelines are also discussed for formations with little fines and a very uniform grain size distribution.
Proposed criteria are based on field experience and experiments conducted with reservoir cores from different sand formations worldwide. Experiments were conducted by "packing" different gravels at the effluent end of core plugs and surging fluids through the plugs and gravel. Cases are presented where traditional methods would lead to an overly restrictive gravel pack and advantages are obtained with use of larger gravel.