skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Class III Mid-Term Project, "Increasing Heavy Oil Reserves in the Wilmington Oil Field Through Advanced Reservoir Characterization and Thermal Production Technologies"

Abstract

The overall objective of this project was to increase heavy oil reserves in slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoirs through the application of advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. The project involved improving thermal recovery techniques in the Tar Zone of Fault Blocks II-A and V (Tar II-A and Tar V) of the Wilmington Field in Los Angeles County, near Long Beach, California. A primary objective has been to transfer technology that can be applied in other heavy oil formations of the Wilmington Field and other SBC reservoirs, including those under waterflood. The first budget period addressed several producibility problems in the Tar II-A and Tar V thermal recovery operations that are common in SBC reservoirs. A few of the advanced technologies developed include a three-dimensional (3-D) deterministic geologic model, a 3-D deterministic thermal reservoir simulation model to aid in reservoir management and subsequent post-steamflood development work, and a detailed study on the geochemical interactions between the steam and the formation rocks and fluids. State of the art operational work included drilling and performing a pilot steam injection and production project via four new horizontal wells (2 producers and 2 injectors), implementing a hot water alternating steam (WAS) drivemore » pilot in the existing steamflood area to improve thermal efficiency, installing a 2400-foot insulated, subsurface harbor channel crossing to supply steam to an island location, testing a novel alkaline steam completion technique to control well sanding problems, and starting on an advanced reservoir management system through computer-aided access to production and geologic data to integrate reservoir characterization, engineering, monitoring, and evaluation. The second budget period phase (BP2) continued to implement state-of-the-art operational work to optimize thermal recovery processes, improve well drilling and completion practices, and evaluate the geomechanical characteristics of the producing formations. The objectives were to further improve reservoir characterization of the heterogeneous turbidite sands, test the proficiency of the three-dimensional geologic and thermal reservoir simulation models, identify the high permeability thief zones to reduce water breakthrough and cycling, and analyze the nonuniform distribution of the remaining oil in place. This work resulted in the redevelopment of the Tar II-A and Tar V post-steamflood projects by drilling several new wells and converting idle wells to improve injection sweep efficiency and more effectively drain the remaining oil reserves. Reservoir management work included reducing water cuts, maintaining or increasing oil production, and evaluating and minimizing further thermal-related formation compaction. The BP2 project utilized all the tools and knowledge gained throughout the DOE project to maximize recovery of the oil in place.« less

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
City Of Long Beach
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
924483
DOE Contract Number:
FC22-95BC14939
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
02 PETROLEUM; DRILLING; GEOLOGIC MODELS; HOT WATER; MANAGEMENT; MONITORING; OIL FIELDS; PERMEABILITY; PETROLEUM; STEAM; STEAM INJECTION; SWEEP EFFICIENCY; TAR; TESTING; THERMAL EFFICIENCY; THERMAL RECOVERY; VISCOSITY; WATER; WELL DRILLING

Citation Formats

Scott Hara. Class III Mid-Term Project, "Increasing Heavy Oil Reserves in the Wilmington Oil Field Through Advanced Reservoir Characterization and Thermal Production Technologies". United States: N. p., 2007. Web. doi:10.2172/924483.
Scott Hara. Class III Mid-Term Project, "Increasing Heavy Oil Reserves in the Wilmington Oil Field Through Advanced Reservoir Characterization and Thermal Production Technologies". United States. doi:10.2172/924483.
Scott Hara. Sat . "Class III Mid-Term Project, "Increasing Heavy Oil Reserves in the Wilmington Oil Field Through Advanced Reservoir Characterization and Thermal Production Technologies"". United States. doi:10.2172/924483. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/924483.
@article{osti_924483,
title = {Class III Mid-Term Project, "Increasing Heavy Oil Reserves in the Wilmington Oil Field Through Advanced Reservoir Characterization and Thermal Production Technologies"},
author = {Scott Hara},
abstractNote = {The overall objective of this project was to increase heavy oil reserves in slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoirs through the application of advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. The project involved improving thermal recovery techniques in the Tar Zone of Fault Blocks II-A and V (Tar II-A and Tar V) of the Wilmington Field in Los Angeles County, near Long Beach, California. A primary objective has been to transfer technology that can be applied in other heavy oil formations of the Wilmington Field and other SBC reservoirs, including those under waterflood. The first budget period addressed several producibility problems in the Tar II-A and Tar V thermal recovery operations that are common in SBC reservoirs. A few of the advanced technologies developed include a three-dimensional (3-D) deterministic geologic model, a 3-D deterministic thermal reservoir simulation model to aid in reservoir management and subsequent post-steamflood development work, and a detailed study on the geochemical interactions between the steam and the formation rocks and fluids. State of the art operational work included drilling and performing a pilot steam injection and production project via four new horizontal wells (2 producers and 2 injectors), implementing a hot water alternating steam (WAS) drive pilot in the existing steamflood area to improve thermal efficiency, installing a 2400-foot insulated, subsurface harbor channel crossing to supply steam to an island location, testing a novel alkaline steam completion technique to control well sanding problems, and starting on an advanced reservoir management system through computer-aided access to production and geologic data to integrate reservoir characterization, engineering, monitoring, and evaluation. The second budget period phase (BP2) continued to implement state-of-the-art operational work to optimize thermal recovery processes, improve well drilling and completion practices, and evaluate the geomechanical characteristics of the producing formations. The objectives were to further improve reservoir characterization of the heterogeneous turbidite sands, test the proficiency of the three-dimensional geologic and thermal reservoir simulation models, identify the high permeability thief zones to reduce water breakthrough and cycling, and analyze the nonuniform distribution of the remaining oil in place. This work resulted in the redevelopment of the Tar II-A and Tar V post-steamflood projects by drilling several new wells and converting idle wells to improve injection sweep efficiency and more effectively drain the remaining oil reserves. Reservoir management work included reducing water cuts, maintaining or increasing oil production, and evaluating and minimizing further thermal-related formation compaction. The BP2 project utilized all the tools and knowledge gained throughout the DOE project to maximize recovery of the oil in place.},
doi = {10.2172/924483},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Sat Mar 31 00:00:00 EDT 2007},
month = {Sat Mar 31 00:00:00 EDT 2007}
}

Technical Report:

Save / Share:
  • The objective of this project was to increase the recoverable heavy oil reserves within sections of the Wilmington Oil Field, near Long Beach, California through the testing and application of advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. It was hoped that the successful application of these technologies would result in their implementation throughout the Wilmington Field and, through technology transfer, will be extended to increase the recoverable oil reserves in other slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoirs.
  • The objective of this project was to increase the recoverable heavy oil reserves within sections of the Wilmington Oil Field, near Long Beach, California through the testing and application of advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. The successful application of these technologies would result in expanding their implementation throughout the Wilmington Field and, through technology transfer, to other slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoirs.
  • The project involves improving thermal recovery techniques in a slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoir in the Wilmington field, Los Angeles Co., Calif. using advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. The existing steamflood in the Tar zone of Fault Block (FB) II-A has been relatively inefficient because of several producibility problems which are common in SBC reservoirs. Inadequate characterization of the heterogeneous turbidite sands, high permeability thief zones, low gravity oil, and nonuniform distribution of remaining oil have all contributed to poor sweep efficiency, high steam-oil ratios, and early steam breakthrough. Operational problems related to steam breakthrough, high reservoirmore » pressure, and unconsolidated formation sands have caused premature well and downhole equipment failures. In aggregate, these reservoir and operational constraints have resulted in increased operating costs and decreased recoverable reserves. The advanced technologies to be applied include: (1) Develop three-dimensional (3-D) deterministic and stochastic geologic models. (2) Develop 3-D deterministic and stochastic thermal reservoir simulation models to aid in reservoir management and subsequent development work. (3) Develop computerized 3-D visualizations of the geologic and reservoir simulation models to aid in analysis. (4) Perform detailed study on the geochemical interactions between the steam and the formation rock and fluids. (5) Pilot steam injection and production via four new horizontal wells (2 producers and 2 injectors). (6) Hot water alternating steam (WAS) drive pilot in the existing steam drive area to improve thermal efficiency. (7) Installing a 2100 foot insulated, subsurface harbor channel crossing to supply steam to an island location. (8) Test a novel alkaline steam completion technique to control well sanding problems and fluid entry profiles. (9) Advanced reservoir management through computer-aided access to production and geologic data to integrate reservoir characterization, engineering, monitoring, and evaluation. Summary of Technical Progress« less
  • The project involves improving thermal recovery techniques in a slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoir in the Wilmington field, Los Angeles Co., Calif. using advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. The existing steamflood in the Tar zone of Fault Block (FB) II-A has been relatively inefficient because of several producibility problems which are common in SBC reservoirs. Inadequate characterization of the heterogeneous turbidite sands, high permeability thief zones, low gravity oil, and nonuniform distribution of remaining oil have all contributed to poor sweep efficiency, high steam-oil ratios, and early steam breakthrough. Operational problems related to steam breakthrough, high reservoirmore » pressure, and unconsolidated formation sands have caused premature well and downhole equipment failures. In aggregate, these reservoir and operational constraints have resulted in increased operating costs and decreased recoverable reserves. The advanced technologies to be applied include: (1) Develop three-dimensional (3-D) deterministic and stochastic geologic models. (2) Develop 3-D deterministic and stochastic thermal reservoir simulation models to aid in reservoir management and subsequent development work. (3) Develop computerized 3-D visualizations of the geologic and reservoir simulation models to aid in analysis. (4) Perform detailed study on the geochemical interactions between the steam and the formation rock and fluids. (5) Pilot steam injection and production via four new horizontal wells (2 producers and 2 injectors). (6) Hot water alternating steam (WAS) drive pilot in the existing steam drive area to improve thermal efficiency. (7) Installing a 2100 foot insulated, subsurface harbor channel crossing to supply steam to an island location. (8) Test a novel alkaline steam completion technique to control well sanding problems and fluid entry profiles. (9) Advanced reservoir management through computer-aided access to production and geologic data to integrate reservoir characterization, engineering, monitoring, and evaluation.« less
  • The objective of this project is to increase the recoverable heavy oil reserves within sections of the Wilmington Oil Field, near Long Beach, California. This is realized through the testing and application of advanced reservoir characterization and thermal production technologies. It is hoped that the successful application of these technologies will result in their implementation throughout the Wilmington Field and through technology transfer, will be extended to increase the recoverable oil reserves in other slope and basin clastic (SBC) reservoirs. The existing steamflood in the Tar zone of Fault Block (FB) II-A has been relatively insufficient because of several producabilitymore » problems which are common in SBC reservoir; inadequate characterization of the heterogeneous turbidite sands, high permeability thief zones, low gravity oil and non-uniform distribution of the remaining oil. This has resulted in poor sweep efficiency, high steam-oil ratios, and early breakthrough. Operational problems related to steam breakthrough, high reservoir pressure, and unconsolidated sands have caused premature well and downhole equipment failures. In aggregate, these reservoir and operational constraints have resulted in increased operating costs and decreased recoverable reserves.« less