Water Coning: A Mitigation Investigation



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This undergraduate level research covers an analysis in the reservoir phenomenon known as water conning. The question being explored is if there exist a scenario where a dual well completion versus a single well completion is more viable in dealing with the economically damaging production of water via water conning action, and as well as taking the production criteria and environmental concerns into consideration. A double well situation could be viable (in hindsight) as long as most of the water produced comes from the water well, and water produced from the water well is usually cost much less financially. However, the creation of the second well also takes financial resources, so a game of pros versus cons must be played in this complex multi-faceted system that contains many combinations of scenarios as seen in the methodology section. The methodology taken consist of the following steps: create an efficient and accurate grid system within the reservoir simulating software ECLIPSE to insure confidence in actual testing of the used reservoir system, create a well completion setting that is reflected across the oil/water contact zone in a proportional manner by using each of the oil and water zone’s fluid column height, run a single well case for a certain setting with the first out of five oil flow rates while the bottom water well is shut in with a water rate of zero, run the previous case with the same setting and oil rate in the oil well but open the bottom water well with the second water rate equal to a fraction of the oil rate, run the same setting with the same oil rate in the oil well for multiple water rate that must be a unique number lower or equal to the oil rate for the next eight iterations for a total of ten iterations, repeat the previous iterations of water rates but with the second oil rate and up to the fifth oil rate, then repeat all of the previous steps for a different setting in the reservoir system. The readers can see that the combinations explode to a countless number of situations within our reservoir structure. With the, admittedly, limited amount of tested combinations, there was not a situation where a double well case triumphed over a single well case in terms taking advantage of the price difference in treating the produced water that comes from the water well rather than the oil well, and this investigation does not justify the mitigation of the water conning to the oil well by developing a secondary well meant to produce water.