Artificial Lift Techbook 2019

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 45 of 59

44 | April 2019 | ARTIFICIAL LIFT: AUTOMATION AND WELLSITE MONITORING Nimbalkar said ForeSite can be used to optimize production from naturally flowing wells in addition to wells that are equipped with rod lift, ESPs, gas lift and plunger lift. The system performs asset level optimization by integrating well models and surface network models to create optimization workflows. "This is specifically utilized at companies who have conventional wells that they have to look at how effi- ciently they can get the oil out of the reservoir," Nim- balkar said. "They look at an interactive optimization workflow and they optimize the well to the surface facilities as well as reservoir well models. ForeSite can integrate all of these workflows together." Best fi ts for automation A variety of automation and monitoring systems have been deployed across every major U.S. oil basin and in many international plays for just about every type of lift system. However, those in the automation sector see different plays and different lift mechanisms as more applicable, and accepting, of automation applications. Robart said, for example, that operators in the Bakken are more willing to adopt automation tech- nologies than those in the Permian Basin. "The Bakken has really been built from scratch over the past 10 years," he said. "Whereas the Permian has the same set of folks who have been pumping wells the same way for 50 or 75 years, and they are not too excited about change and someone telling them there's a better way. In the Bakken, folks have been ripping up production over the past five years. The Permian market has been harder because there is just this fundamental resistance to change that's a little harder to overcome." However, despite the regional reluctance, Robart said Ambyint has made inroads with Permian oper- ators. The company's automation systems have typ- ically found success in the Bakken when companies switch to rod pumps after an initial production run of ESPs. Robart added that a few operators in the Rockies have adopted automated artificial lift systems despite the region being primarily a gas play. "There's relatively less oil to work with in the Rock- ies, but that's changing to some extent," Wadhwa said. The concept of automating and monitoring arti- ficial lift systems is essentially the same for most lift types, whereas the difference in approaches lies in what needs to be monitored and what needs to be optimized. "With ESPs, customers like to optimize the power consumption," he said. "Power is the biggest cost factor in operating an ESP, followed by the cost of a premature motor failure. Our event-driven prescrip- tive analytics model utilizes best practices and helps minimize failures to reduce the cost of ESP operations. Failure is not an event, it is a process. It doesn't happen all at once, so we believe in a preventative approach." Holsey said rod lift systems, ESPs and, to a lesser extent, gas-lift systems, are providing Apergy with a wealth of data that help them better understand a reservoir's production possibilities. "We have a little better idea of what the reservoir will give us," he said. "For rod pumps, we haven't really figured out how to get a very good measure of bottomhole flowing pressure, so we're still guessing on how much the reservoir allows us to take out. I think that whole world is still evolving." Makin said Silverwell's monitoring system is able to mitigate instabilities in gas-lifted wells as a result of the control and monitoring the company's system provides. Additionally, an operator's gas budget can be better planned and managed with the ideal gas allocation that an optimized system provides. Weatherford's automation controllers can be applied to rod lift, gas lift, progressive cavity pumps and jet pumps, Nimbalkar said. The company's next generation of controllers, ForeSite Edge, have the optimization models on the controllers themselves. "All of these controllers are IoT-enabled, which means they have Signet where you can get the high-fre- quency data, and using that high-frequency data you can do all the optimization by using the ForeSite models on the controller level," he said. "With the Silverwell's DIAL system integrates temperature and pressure gradient monitoring with the capability to control the rate of gas injection. (Image courtesy of Silverwell)

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Playbooks - Artificial Lift Techbook 2019