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# Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.

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1. Coning Introduction
2. Coning types
3. Coning dependency
1. Conning Vertical Well:
A. Critical Rate Correlations
B. Breakthrough Time
C. Breakthrough Performance
Critical rate definition
Critical rate Qoc is defined as
the maximum allowable oil flow rate that can be
imposed on the well to avoid a cone breakthrough.
The critical rate would correspond to the
development of a stable cone
to an elevation just below the bottom of the perforated
interval in an oil-water system or
to an elevation just above the top of the perforated
interval in a gas-oil system.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 5

Oil critical rate empirical correlations
There are several empirical correlations that are
commonly used to predict the oil critical rate,
including the correlations of:
Meyer-Garder
Chierici-Ciucci
Hoyland-Papatzacos-Skjaeveland
Chaney et al.
Chaperson
Schols

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 6

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
Meyer and Garder (1954) suggest that coning
development is a result of the radial flow of the oil
and associated pressure sink around the wellbore.
In their derivations, Meyer and Garder assume a
homogeneous system with a uniform permeability
throughout the reservoir, i.e., kh = kv .
It should be pointed out that the ratio kh/kv is the
most critical term in evaluating and solving the
coning problem.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 7

The Meyer-Garder Correlation (Cont.)
They developed three separate correlations for
determining the critical oil flow rate:
Gas coning,
Water coning
Combined gas and water coning
Meyer and Garder correlated the critical oil rate
required to achieve a stable gas cone with the following
well penetration and fluid parameters:
Difference in the oil and gas density
Depth Dt from the original gas-oil contact to the top of the
perforations
The oil column thickness h
The well perforated interval hp, in a gas-oil system, is
essentially defined as: hp = h Dt

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 8

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
(Gas coning)

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 9

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
(Gas coning) (Cont.)
Meyer and Garder propose the following
expression for determining the oil critical flow rate
in a gas-oil system:

## Qoc = critical oil rate, STB/day

g, o = density of gas and oil, respectively, lb/ft3
ko = effective oil permeability, md
re, rw = drainage and wellbore radius, respectively, ft
h = oil column thickness, ft
Dt = distance from the gas-oil contact to the top of the
perforations, ft

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 10

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
(Water coning)

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 11

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
(Water coning) (Cont.)
Meyer and Garder propose a similar expression for
determining the critical oil rate in the water coning
system. The proposed relationship has the following
form:

## w = water density, lb/ft3

hp = perforated interval, ft

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 12

The development of gas and water
coning

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 13

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
(Simultaneous gas and water coning)
If the effective oil-pay thickness h is comprised
between a gas cap and a water zone, the
completion interval hp must be such as
to permit maximum oil-production rate without having
gas and water simultaneously produced by coning,
gas breaking through at the top of the interval and
water at the bottom.
This case is of particular interest in the production
from a thin column underlaid by bottom water and
overlaid by gas.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 14

The Meyer-Garder Correlation
(Simultaneous gas and water coning)
For combined gas and water coning, Pirson (1977)
combined previous Equations to produce the
following simplified expression for determining the
maximum oil flow rate without gas and water
coning:

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 15

the optimum placement of the
desired depth of perforation
Pirson (1977) derives a relationship for determining
the optimum placement of the desired hp feet of
perforation in an oil zone with a gas cap above and
a water zone below.
Pirson proposes that the optimum distance Dt from the
GOC to the top of the perforations can be determined
from the following expression:

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 16

the Meyer-Garder Correlation
assumptions
Slider (1976) points out that the Meyer-Garder
Correlations are not based on realistic assumptions.
One of the biggest difficulties is in the assumption
that the permeability is the same in all directions.
As noted, this assumption is seldom realistic.
Since sedimentary formations were initially laid down in
thin, horizontal sheets, it is natural for the formation
permeability to vary from one sheet to another
vertically.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 17

the Meyer-Garder Correlation
assumptions (Cont.)
Therefore, there is generally quite a difference
between the permeability measured in a vertical
direction and the permeability measured in a
horizontal direction.
Furthermore, the permeability in the horizontal
direction is normally considerably greater than the
permeability in the vertical direction.
This also seems logical when we recognize that very thin,
even microscopic sheets of impermeable material, such
as shale, may have been periodically deposited.
These permeability barriers have a great effect on the vertical
flow and have very little effect on the horizontal flow, which
would be parallel to the plane of the sheets.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 18

The Chierici-Ciucci Approach
Chierici and Ciucci (1964) used a potentiometric model
to predict the coning behavior in vertical oil wells.
The results of their work are presented in dimensionless
graphs that take into account the vertical and horizontal
permeability.
The diagrams can be used for solving the following two
types of problems:
Given the reservoir and fluid properties, as well as
the position of and length of the perforated interval,
determine the maximum oil production rate
without water and/or gas coning.
Given the reservoir and fluids characteristics only,
determine the optimum position of the perforated interval.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 19

The Hoyland-Papatzacos-Skjaeveland
Methods
Hoyland, Papatzacos, and Skjaeveland (1989)
presented two methods
for predicting critical oil rate
for bottom water coning
in anisotropic,
homogeneous formations
with the well completed
from the top of the formation.
The first method is an analytical solution, and
the second is a numerical solution to the coning
problem.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 20

Critical Rate Curves by Chaney et al.
Chaney et al. (1956) developed a set of working
curves for determining oil critical flow rate.
The authors proposed a set of working graphs that were
generated by using a potentiometric analyzer study and
applying the water coning mathematical theory as
developed by Muskat Wyckoff (1935).
The graphs are designed to determine the critical flow rate in
oil-water, gas-oil, and gas-water systems with a specific fluid
and rock properties.
The hypothetical rates as determined from the Chaney et al.
curves (designated as Qcurve), are corrected to account for the
actual reservoir rock and fluid properties.

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 21

Chapersons Method
Chaperson (1986) Qoc = critical oil rate,
STB/day
proposed a simple kh = horizontal
relationship permeability, md
to estimate the critical = w o, density
rate of a vertical well difference, lb/ft3
in an anisotropic h = oil column thickness,
ft
formation (kv kh). hp = perforated interval,
The relationship accounts ft
for the distance between Joshi (1991) correlated
the production well and the coefficient q*c with
boundary. the parameter as

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 22

Schols Method
Schols (1972) developed an empirical equation
based on results obtained from numerical simulator
and laboratory experiments.
His critical rate equation has the following form:

## ko = effective oil permeability, md

hp = perforated interval, ft
= density, lb/ft3
It is only valid for isotropic formation, (kh = kv)

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 23

breakthrough
Critical flow rate calculations frequently show low
rates that, for economic reasons, cannot be
imposed on production wells.
Therefore, if a well produces above its critical rate,
the cone will break through after a given time
period.
This time is called time to breakthrough tBT.
Two of the most widely used correlations are:
The Sobocinski-Cornelius Method
The Bournazel-Jeanson Method

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 26

The Sobocinski-Cornelius Method
Sobocinski and Cornelius (1965) developed a
correlation for predicting water breakthrough time
based on laboratory data and modeling results.
The authors correlated the breakthrough time with
two dimensionless parameters,
the dimensionless cone height (Z) and
the dimensionless breakthrough time (tD)BT

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 27

The Bournazel-Jeanson Method
Based on experimental data, Bournazel and
Jeanson (1971) developed a methodology that uses
the same dimensionless groups proposed in the
Sobocinski-Cornelius method.
Step 1. Calculate the dimensionless core height Z
Step 2. Calculate the dimensionless breakthrough time
by applying the following expression:

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 28

Water production performance
prediction
Once the water breakthrough occurs, it is important
to predict the performance of water production
as a function of time.
Normally,
using numerical radial models solves such a problem.
Currently, no simple analytical solution exists to predict
the performance of the vertical well after breakthrough.
Kuo and Desbrisay (1983) applied the material balance
equation to predict the rise in the oil-water contact in a
homogeneous reservoir and correlated their numerical
results in terms of the following dimensionless
parameters:
Dimensionless water cut (fw)D
Dimensionless breakthrough time tDBT
Dimensionless limiting water cut (WC)limit

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 30

Procedure of
predicting the rise in the OWC
Step 1. Calculate the time to breakthrough tBT by using
the SobocinskiCornelius method or the Bournazel-
Jeanson correlation.
Step 2. Assume any time t after breakthrough.
Step 3. Calculate the dimensionless breakthrough time
ratio tDBT
Step 4. Compute the dimensionless limiting water cut
Step 5. Calculate the dimensionless water cut (fw)D
based upon the dimensionless breakthrough time ratio
Step 6. Calculate the actual water cut fw
Step 7. Calculate water and oil flow rate

## Spring14 H. AlamiNia Reservoir Engineering 2 Course (1st Ed.) 31

1. Ahmed, T. (2010). Reservoir engineering
handbook (Gulf Professional Publishing).
Chapter 9

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