Research and application of water jet technology in well completion and stimulation in China

Petroleum Science, Jun 2010

In recent years, rapid progress in the use of high pressure water jets (HPWJ) has been made in oil and gas well drilling, completion, and stimulation; and good results have been achieved in field applications. Advances in technologies and developments of well completion and stimulation with hydrajet are reviewed in this paper. Experiments were conducted to study the characteristics of abrasive water jetting and to optimize jet parameters, which can provide methods for the well completion and hydrajet fracturing. Deep-penetrating hydrajet perforating can create a 2–3 m clean hole with a diameter of 20–35 mm. Multilayer hydrajet fracturing is a process whereby multiple layers are stimulated in a single run without using mechanical packers, thereby reducing operation procedure and risk. Multilateral radial wells can be drilled using hydraulic jetting up to 100 m in length. The technique to remove sand particles and plugs with rotating self-resonating cavitating water jets in horizontal wellbores has been developed and oilfield-tested, which shows promising, cost effective prospects.

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Research and application of water jet technology in well completion and stimulation in China

Pet.Sci. Research and application of water jet technology in well completion and stimulation in China Li Gensheng 0 Huang Zhongwei 0 Tian Shouceng 0 Shen Zhonghou 0 0 State Key Laboratory of Petroleum Resource and Prospecting, China University of Petroleum , Beijing 102249 , China In recent years, rapid progress in the use of high pressure water jets (HPWJ) has been made in oil and gas well drilling, completion, and stimulation; and good results have been achieved in field applications. Advances in technologies and developments of well completion and stimulation with hydrajet are reviewed in this paper. Experiments were conducted to study the characteristics of abrasive water jetting and to optimize jet parameters, which can provide methods for the well completion and hydrajet fracturing. Deep-penetrating hydrajet perforating can create a 2-3 m clean hole with a diameter of 20-35 mm. Multilayer hydrajet fracturing is a process whereby multiple layers are stimulated in a single run without using mechanical packers, thereby reducing operation procedure and risk. Multilateral radial wells can be drilled using hydraulic jetting up to 100 m in length. The technique to remove sand particles and plugs with rotating self-resonating cavitating water jets in horizontal wellbores has been developed and oilfield-tested, which shows promising, cost effective prospects. Water jet; abrasive jet; well completion; perforation; stimulation; horizontal drilling with hydrajet - The high pressure water jet (HPWJ) technique has been widely used for many years around the world in different fields, such as mining, cutting, cleaning, and scarifying materials (Maurer, 1980; Summers, 1994; Vijay, 1995; Kobayashi, 2007). In the last 30 years, rapid progress in the utilization of high-pressure water jet has been made in oil and gas well drilling, completion, and stimulation; and good results have been achieved in field applications (Shen, 1997; Li et al, 2005). Well completion and stimulation techniques using water jet technique provide alternative approaches and have significant impact on enhanced oil recovery and reduction in costs. This paper considers water jet techniques and their applications in well completion and stimulation in China, including abrasive jet perforating, deep-penetrating hydrajet perforating, multilayer hydrajet fracturing, and radial horizontal drilling with hydrajet. 2 Abrasive jet perforating Shaped charge jet perforating is commonly used in conventional oil and gas wells, but this method creates a lowpermeability crushed-zone surrounding the wellbore. The permeability of the damaged zone decreases to 10%-35% of the original, and its thickness is 6-12.5 mm, even reaching 25 mm. The procedure of abrasive jet perforating is as follows: The slurry containing abrasive solids is pressurized in a fracturing truck. The high-pressure slurry is pumped downhole with a tubing pump. The resulting high velocity fluid stream is ejected from the nozzles of downhole tools at a high speed to perforate the casing and near wellbore formation, and finally a perforation tunnel is created (as shown in Fig. 1). Therefore, this method can increase the near-wellbore permeability, enhance well productivity, and avoid permeability reduction caused by crushed zones (Cobbett, 1999). Since 2004, a great number of tests have been done in laboratory to investigate the effects of various parameters on the perforation depth (Li et al, 2004). The tested parameters are jetting pressure, flow rate, confining pressure, jetting time, abrasive type, abrasive concentration, abrasive size, and rock strength. Test results demonstrated that the perforation depth and diameter increased significantly with jetting pressure. Perforation depth increased when the flow rate increased, so a long perforation tunnel might be achieved by means of high pressure and high flow rate. The confining pressure increased with well depth; the perforation depth under a specific confining pressure was much lower than that under no confining pressure. At a specified pressure, the perforation depth increased sharply with jetting time at the initial stage of abrasive jet perforating. After a period of time, the perforation depth extended to the maximum value, then the perforation depth almost did not increase any more but the tunnel 1.2 0.9 2.5 2.8 not be removed by perforation tunnels created by a shaped charge. 3) Minor or superficial damage to the casing. Several tens or hundreds of bullets are shot one time from a charge gun, this will greatly damage the casing and speed up casing corrosion. However, hydrajet perforating hardly causes casing damage due to a lower number of perforation tunnels than the conventional method, therefore the life of oil casings is relatively longer (Li et al, 2007). To date, there are two operation methods in China, downhole control mode and surface control mode, to perforate tunnels in the desired formations, depending on the application and wellbore conditions. Deep-penetrating perforating technique using hydraulic jet (or hydrajet), which can be controlled downhole, has been applied to more than 10 wells in recent years (He and Hu, 2006). Fig. 3 showed that the fluid production increased significantly after the perforating was carried out with downhole automatic control mode in Wei 5-19 well, Jiangsu Oilfield. The hydrajet perforating technique, which can be controlled on the surface, was developed by China University of Petroleum and was applied to Sha11-5 well and Sha1942 well, Jiangsu Oilfield. Fig. 4 showed that the total fluid production of Sha19-42 well increased significantly. 4 Multilayer hydrajet fracturing To date, staged fracturing in horizontal wells and multilayer fracturing in vertical wells are preferred stimulation treatments to increase oil production. The techniques commonly-used in multilayer fracturing or staged fracturing includes limited entry fracturing, temporary plugging agent multilayer fracturing, and mechanical packer separate layers fracturing. Limited entry fracturing requires low perforation density, which would hamper enlarging the effective radius of wellbore by perforating. During limited entry treatment a sharp pressure drop might appear at perforation tunnels and the fracture entrance, which affects the distribution of solid-carrying fluid in layers. The flow area of fractures induced by limited entry treatment is small, so proppant might easily be reversed out in the flowback and production periods. When fracturing treatment is performed in a horizontal open hole, the easiest isolation method is to use temporary plugging agents, such as halite, benzoic flake, or camphor balls. However, it is hard to control the distance between fracture initiation points along the wellhole; and it is difficult to control the proppant filling in fractures nearwellbore in the temporary plugging stage. In the cased wells, multilayer fracturing or staged fracturing treatment can be conducted by setting packers in the designed locations, but, the packers can easily stick in place after fracturing treatment, resulting in downhole problems. In multilayer fracturing treatment using hydrajet multiple layers are stimulated in a well with one run and no mechanical packer is used, thereby reducing fracturing cost and operation risk and improving fracturing effect. A new stimulation treatment is now available that combines hydrajetting and fracturing techniques (Surjaatmadja et al, 1998; 2004). Firstly, a high-pressure water jet (HPWJ) is ejected in the desired direction to perforate formation rocks, and the high velocity fluid creates many micro-fractures at the tip of the perforation tunnel, and thus reducing the fracture initiation pressure. Hydrajet continues to flow into the perforation tunnels and then develops boosting. After closing the annulus, once the combination of jetting boosting and annular pressure exceeds rock fracture pressure, the formation rock at the tip of the perforation tunnel will be fractured (as shown in Fig. 5). When the fracture has been initiated and fracturing fluids are pumped into the annulus, the fluids are drawn by the high-velocity jetting from the annulus into the perforation tunnel and fracture; the fracture can be extended substantially. By using this technique, staged fracturing treatment can be performed several times at the designed well interval without using mechanical packers. The technique enables accurate placement of reservoir treatments down the annulus and enhances the productivity of stimulated wells and the operation safety once it is used in conjunction with an acidizing technique. Since 2006, Changqing Oilfield and the Halliburton Company have cooperated in hydrajet fracturing in more than 10 wells. In the year of 2007, China University of Petroleum (Beijing) and Oil Recovery Engineering Research Institute of PetroChina Southwest Oil & Gasfield Company 5.0 4.5 4.0 3 m3.5 , ion 3.0 t cud 2.5 rpo 2.0 liud 1.5 F 1.0 0.5 7 3 6 m ,n 5 o it cu 4 d rpo 3 l i/o 2 d i luF 1 0 December December December December January 1 11 21 31 10 Time January 20 January 30 Fig. 4 A comparison of fluid/oil production before and after hydrajet perforating in Sha 19-42 well April. 2007 Cirigliano R A and Talavera Blacutt J F. First experience in the application of radial perforation technique in deep wells . Paper SPE 107182 presented at 2007 SPE Latin American and Caribbean Petroleum Engineering Conference, Buenos Aires, 15 - 18 April. 2007 Cobbett S. Sand jet perforating revisited . SPE Drilling & Completion. 1999 . 14 ( 1 ): 28 -33 Dickinson W , Auderson R R and Dickinson R W. The ultrashort-radius radial system . SPE Drilling Engineering . 1989 . Sept.: 247 -254 He H Q and Hu Q F. The technique of water jet deep-penetration reforming the near well-bore area . Proceedings of 8th Pacific Rim International Conference on Water Jet Technique held in Qingdao, China , 10 - 12 October, 2006 . 230 -237 Kobayashi R. Occasional thoughts on research basics and application . Jet Engineering . 2007 . 24 ( 3 ): 1 - 5 (in Japanese) Li G S , Huang Z W , Niu J L , et al. Productivity-enhancing technique of deep penetrating perforating with high pressure water jet . Petroleum Science and Technology . 2007 . 25 ( 3 ): 289 - 297 Li G S , Huang Z W , Zhang D B , et al. Study of treatment of near wellbore formation processed with high pressure rotating water jets . Proceeding of the 4th Pacific Rim International Conference on Water Jet Technique , Shimizu, Japan, 1995 . 27 - 46


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Gensheng Li, Zhongwei Huang, Shouceng Tian, Zhonghou Shen. Research and application of water jet technology in well completion and stimulation in China, Petroleum Science, 2010, 239-244, DOI: 10.1007/s12182-010-0009-9