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Theoretically, oil is extracted from the reservoir by the stored energy of the compressed oil

in the reservoir. This energy is obtained by the difference between the reservoir and
wellbore pressures. If this difference is high enough, the well will be capable of producing
naturally. Most oil wells worldwide are producing naturally in their early lives. After
producing for a period of time, the reservoir pressure will decrease and as a result the
difference between reservoir and wellbore pressure will be small. A well never actually
reaches its absolute flow potential so we need to artificial technique to produce at some
desired rate from the reservoir.
Artificial lift is a technique used to provide addition energy to the formation fluids in a
production wells to bring oil from the reservoir to the surface because of the energy of
reservoir is not enough to lift fluids up (decreasing reservoir pressure) and the purpose is to
flow up the tubing string at an economic rate.
We can utilize this technique in two situations:
Artificial lift can be applied in wells when there is insufficient pressure in the
reservoir to lift the produced fluids to the surface.
It also often used in naturally flowing wells (which do not technically need it) to
increase the flow rate above the naturally flowing.
Several types of artificial lift can be used to increase the production rate and maximize
hydrocarbon recovery and the four common methods of artificial lift are:
Beam pumping
Gas lift
Hydraulic pumping
Submersible pumping
Beam pumping
Is the most common artificial lift system used in land-based operations. The pump is
designed to be inserted inside the tubing of a well and its function to gather the fluids from
subsurface and bring it to surface the pump is connected to the pumping unit at the surface
by a string of sucker rods. Sucker rod is stroked up and down in the tubing, activating the
pump at the bottom and at the surface, a large mechanical device called the beam pumping
unit is attached .Depending on the size of the pump, it generally produces 5 to 40 liters of
liquid at each stroke. Often this is an emulsion of crude oil and water. Pump size is also
determined by the depth and weight of the oil to remove, with deeper extraction requiring
more power to move the heavier lengths of sucker rods.

Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016

Advantages of beam pumping are:

High system efficiency


Economical to repair and service
Flexibility adjust production through stroke and speed
High salvage value for surface unit and downhole equipment

Disadvantages of beam pumping unit are:


Limited to relatively low production volumes, less than 1,000 barrels per day.
Limited to onshore application (big surface unit required).

Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016

electric Submersible Pumping (ESP)

Consists of an electric motor attached to a pump on the end of the tubing string
The electric motor turns a centrifugal pump which forces oil from the bottom of
the well up through the inside of the tubing, and out at the surface. The
electricity is supplied through an electric cable attached to the side of the tubing
and connected to the electric motor.

Advantages of ESP:

High volume and depth capacity.


High efficiency over 1,000 BPD
Low maintenance.
Minimal surface equipment requirements.
High resistance to corrosive downhole environments.
Use in deviated wells and vertical wells with doglegs.

Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016

Disadvantage of ESP:
Poor ability to pump sand.
ESP pumps can be damaged from gas lock. In wells producing high GOR fluids, a
downhole gas separator must be installed.
Another disadvantage is that ESP pumps have limited production ranges
determined by the number and type of pump stages; changing production rates
requires either a pump change or installation of a variable-speed surface drive. The
tubing must be pulled for pump repairs or replacement.

Gas Lift
A series of devices called gas lift valves are inserted into the sides of the tubing. The gas is
injected into the well through the tubing-casing annulus and enters the tubing through the
gas lift mandrels and gas lift valves. The fluid in the tubing is made lighter by the gas, and
as a result, the mixture is pushed to the surface by reservoir pressure. A source of gas and
compression equipment is required for gas lift. Proper installation and compatibility of gas
lift equipment, (surface and in the wellbore), are essential to any gas lift system.

Gas lift can be controlled for a single well to optimize production, and to reduce slugging
effects where the gas droplets collect to form large bubbles that can upset production. Gas
lift can also be optimized over several wells to use available gas in the most efficient way.
Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016

There are two main types of gas lift:


Continuous gas lift:
Where gas is injected in a constant, uninterrupted stream this lowers the overall density of
the fluid column and reduces the hydrostatic component of the flowing bottomhole
pressure. This method is generally applied to wells with high productivity indexes.
Intermittent gas lift:
Which is designed for lower-productivity wells in this type of gas lift installation, a
volume of formation fluid accumulates inside the production tubing. A high-pressure
slug of gas is then injected below the liquid, physically displacing it to the surface. As
soon as the fluid is produced, gas injection is interrupted, and the cycle of liquid
accumulation-gas injection-liquid production is repeated.
Advantages of gas lift:
Gas lift can be used in deviated or crooked wellbores, and in high-temperature
environments that might adversely affect other lift methods, and it is conducive to
maximizing lift efficiency in high-GOR wells. Wireline-retrievable gas lift valves can be
pulled and reinstalled without pulling the tubing, making it relatively easy and economical
to modify the design.
Disadvantages of gas lift:
The availability of gas and the costs for compression and injection are major
considerations. Lift efficiency can be reduced by corrosion and paraffin. Another
disadvantage of gas lift is its difficulty in fully depleting low-pressure, low-productivity
wells. Also, the start-and-stop nature of intermittent gas lift may cause downhole pressure
surges and lead to increased sand production.
Hydraulic pump
Hydraulic pump systems use a power fluid usually light oil or water that is injected from
the surface to operate a downhole pump. Multiple wells can be produced using a single
surface power fluid installation.
High pressure oil is pumped into the well through the tubing string. At the bottom of the
well, the powered oil enters a mechanical device, causing it to reciprocate. This mechanical
device activates a pump, which lifts the oil from the producing formation, together with
expended powered oil to the surface.
Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016

With a reciprocating hydraulic pump, the injected power fluid operates a downhole fluid
engine, which drives a piston to pump formation fluid and spent power fluid to the surface.
A jet pump is a type of hydraulic pump with no moving parts. Power fluid is injected into
the pump body and into a small-diameter nozzle, where it becomes a low-pressure, highvelocity jet. Formation fluid mixes with the power fluid, and then passes into an
expanding-diameter diffuser. This reduces the velocity of the fluid mixture, while causing
its pressure to increase to a level that is sufficient to lift it to the surface
The systems consist of a surface power fluid system, a prime mover, a surface pump, and a
downhole jet or pump

Advantages of Hydraulic Pump:

No moving parts.
High volume capability.
Multiwell production from a single package.
Low pump maintenance.

Disadvantages of Hydraulic Pump:


High initial capital cost.
Complex to operate.
Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016

Pump Assist lift - PCP


As the rotor turns, cavities between the rotor and
stator move upward. Progressive cavity pumps are
commonly used for dewatering coalbed methane gas
wells, for production and injection applications in
waterflood projects and for producing heavy or highsolids oil. They are versatile, generally very efficient,
and excellent for handling fluids with high solids
content. However, because of the torsional stresses
placed on rod strings and temperature limitations on
the stator elastomers, they are not used in deeper
wells.

Shaker mahmood-university of Zakho-petroleum engineering kurdistan

2015-2016