Geomechanical Wellbore Imaging: Key to Managing the Asset Life Cycle
Colleen Barton, Daniel Moos, 2010. "Geomechanical Wellbore Imaging: Key to Managing the Asset Life Cycle", Dipmeter and Borehole Image Log Technology, M. Pöppelreiter, C. García-Carballido, M. Kraaijveld
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A field-specific geomechanical model serves as a platform for dramatically reducing costs and increasing production over the life of a field. The information contained in a geomechanical model makes it possible to assess exploration risk associated with fault-seal breach caused by fault slip. Using model-specific stress, pore pressure, and rock properties information, drilling engineers can provide recommendations for efficient well design and placement to reduce adverse events such as stuck pipe and lost circulation. A geomechanical model also makes it possible to design completions to avoid or manage solids production and to extend the productive life of wells. In addition, the effects of reservoir depletion and injection can be predicted to enable optimal exploitation that avoids excessive reservoir damage, casing collapse, and hazards related to leakage of produced or injected fluids.
The essential contribution of wellbore image technologies to these exploration and production challenges is illustrated through recent case studies that apply wellbore imaging technologies to the detection, access, and recovery of hydrocarbons. Future reservoir development and management practice will demand an increased use of imaging techniques to ensure successful production in risky drilling environments, reduce the costs associated with drilling, and increase the economic lifetime of mature reservoirs.
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Borehole imaging is among the fastest and most accurate methods for collecting high resolution subsurface data. Recent breakthroughs in acquisition, tool design, and modeling software provide real-time subsurface images of incredible detail, from the drill bit straight to a workstation. Associated interpretation workflows offer the high level of detail that is needed to make operational decision and to increase the predictability of subsurface models. Many exploration and production companies have acquired a wealth of dipmeter and image log data. The data are readily available and provide, for example the orientation of fractures and fluvial channels in space. Further applications of borehole imaging technology include matrix and fracture characterization, pore-type partitioning, geosteering, and in-situ stress determination. Exciting new applications are found in enhanced oil recovery, carbon dioxide sequestration, and geothermal projects. In addition, borehole image data are paramount to unlocking unconventional plays such as shale gas and coal-bed methane. AAPG Memoir 92 portrays key applications of dipmeter and image log data across the exploration and production life cycle. (Continued)