American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers, Inc.
This paper was prepared for the Improved Oil Recovery Symposium of the Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME, to be held in Tulsa, Okla., March 22–24, 1976. Permission to copy is restricted to an abstract of not more than 300 words. Illustrations may not be copied. The abstract should contain conspicuous acknowledgment of where and by whom the paper is presented. Publication elsewhere after publication in the JOURNAL paper is presented. Publication elsewhere after publication in the JOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY or the SOCIETY OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERS JOURNAL is usually granted upon request to the Editor of the appropriate journal provided agreement to give proper credit is made. provided agreement to give proper credit is made. Discussion of this paper is invited. Three copies of any discussion should be sent to the Society of Petroleum Engineers office. Such discussion may be presented at the above meeting and with the paper, may be considered for publication in one of the two SPE magazines.
Gravel pack completions done with viscous carrier fluids and high sand concentrations have resulted in greater productivity for longer periods of time productivity for longer periods of time than have gravel pack completions carried out by conventional methods.
Wells having a sand production problem, whether they are completed problem, whether they are completed with long open hole sections, inner liners, or perforated casing, have been successfully gravel packed with the highly viscous slurries. Deviated holes present no more problem than straight present no more problem than straight holes.
Case histories and treatments used in gravel packing some of these wells in the California fields will be presented. The design application and presented. The design application and techniques used will vary from well to well, but the basic concepts of viscous gravel packing are always considered. These are to ensure clean permeable packs, to minimize intermixing of packs, to minimize intermixing of gravel with formation sand, and to provide adequate sand suspension for proper provide adequate sand suspension for proper placement of gravel. placement of gravel. Factors associated with the success or failure of viscous gravel packing will be discussed.
Methods for controlling sand problems associated with oil and gas problems associated with oil and gas production have been of major concern in production have been of major concern in the industry. The presence of sand in a produced fluid may lead to erosion of equipment and eventual loss in production, due to sanding up of the well. production, due to sanding up of the well. Sand control systems utilizing conventional gravel packing procedures have been the basic method for control of formation sand production. Large volumes of fluids, such as brine water, muds, or low viscosity crudes, are used to transport 1 to 4 pounds per gallon of gravel at pump rates from 1 to 10 bbl/min. This procedure intended to create a gravel pack in the area between the slotted or wire-wrapped liner and the formation. Difficulties inherent to these treatment conditions often produce unfavorable results. produce unfavorable results.