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C.G. Dyke, BP Exploration Operating Co. Ltd., and D.A. Crockett, ARCO Alaska Inc.
Copyright 1993, Society of Petroleum Engineers, Inc.
This paper was prepared for presentation at the Western Regional Meeting held in Anchorage, Alaska, U.S.A. • 26-28 May 1993.
This paper was selected for presentation by an SPE Program Committee following review of information contained in an abstract submitted by the author(s). Contents of the paper, as presented. Have not been reviewed by the Society of Petroleum Engineers and are subject to correction by the author(s). The material, as presented, does not necessarily reflect any position of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, its officers or members. Papers presented at SPE meetings are subject to publication review by Editorial Committees of the Society of Petroleum Engineers. 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. Write Librarian, SPE, P.O. Box 833836, Richardson, TX 75083-3836, U.S.A. Telex, 163245 SPEUT.
A field wide review of rig workovers was carried out for the Prudhoe Bay reservoir to enable a set of 'best practices' to be drawn up and implemented. Particular emphasis was placed on well killing, together with the minimisation of formation damage and loss in productivity index associated with rig workover operations. Clear conclusions emerge which have a significant impact on productivity as well as reducing total workover costs.
The results of this case history are of direct relevance to all workover operations, detailing how cost effective well killing can be performed with the minimal productivity loss.
The Prudhoe Bay field, located on the North Slope of Alaska, is the largest reservoir in the USA with initial reserves of approximately 11 billion barrels. It is jointly operated by BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. and Arco Alaska Inc. First production was in 1977 and the field is now off plateau. Approximately 75 rig workovers are performed each year to maximize the steadily deteriorating well productivity.
To help minimize any avoidable productivity impairment and formation damage arising from these rig workovers, a field wide review of past workover practice was performed. A wide range of workover strategies have been used within the four years covered by the review. These included killing with LCM, living with losses, as well as bullheading or circulating the well during the initial kill. This variation in past practice enabled a wide range of well killing issues to be addressed, as well as assessing the extent of any productivity impairment associated with previous rig workovers. Arising from this, the review's objective - a set of best practices for future rig workovers, was compiled.
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