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© UPC GLOBAL

Merlymar Herrera
Samantha Perozo

410 West Grand Parkway South.


Suite 375
Katy, TX 77494
USA

Support:
Americas: M-F, 8AM to 5pm Central
+1(281) 644-0302

sales@upcoglobal.com

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Content
UPC Global’s integral methodology to optimize rod pumping wells .................................. 5
What to do before a well’s simulation?..................................................................................... 5
Which is the most important data? ............................................................................................ 5
Why data quality is important? ................................................................................................... 5
Which softwares are used? .......................................................................................................... 6
What results can be obtained?.................................................................................................... 6
8 Steps to Optimize Artificial Lift Wells by Mechanical Pumping ....................................... 7

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Introduction
Worldwide production engineers daily face challenges related to improving well
performance and production optimization. These are expected results that require not only
reliable well data, but also effective methodologies – not always available- to achieve such
“production success”. Well data encompasses: completion, production, lifting equipment
and reservoir, among other relevant well data that needs to be systematically kept for all
optimization efforts.

In addition, there is often a delay in the analysis and diagnosis process, given the
lack of a methodology that defines in advance which data is required for the simulation, so
the process becomes reactive.

In UPC Global, we have developed integral methodologies and strategies to optimize


production in oil wells with different artificial lift systems. Our experience over the years
and results obtained with our customers globally has enabled us to improve such
methodologies, therefore we intend to share and disclose as part of our goal to contribute
with the energy sector professionals.

This time we bring you a guide of our methodology to optimize rod pumping oil wells
developed by the expert team at UPC Global.

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UPC Global’s integral methodology to
optimize rod pumping wells
Consider the following critical factors:

What to do before a well’s simulation?

A simulator allows to design the lifting system or diagnose and optimize an existing one.

Which is the most important data?

DIAGNOSIS AND OPTIMIZATION DESIGN


Pumping unit information Potential
(Manufacturer, API codification,
counterweights, direction of rotation
and length of stroke)
Mechanic diagram API Grade
Rod Strings information % AyS
Subsurface pump should be in good Tubing and casing pressure
conditions
Reservoir data (static pressure, bubble Water specific gravity
point pressure)
Fluid level or pwf (if known) Well´s survey
Current or stimated production Engine (Type and size)
Dynamometer chart (dyn format) % pump effciency % pump fulling
Operating conditions

Why data quality is important?

Data reliability determines conclusions and results validity.

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Which softwares are used?

TWM or TAM from Echometer Company and Theta Suite (XDIAG, XBAL, RODSTAR, XTOOLS).

What results can be obtained?

• Pump submergence
• Workloads at the level of the sucker rod, gearbox, engine and structure
• Operating conditions pump
• Equipment performance predictions when adjustments are made
• Recommendations to improve system efficiency

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8 Steps to Optimize Artificial Lift Wells
by Mechanical Pumping

HISTORIC REVIEW

UPDATED WELL FILE UPDATED FIELDS


ACTIONS EXECUTION AND GENERATION MEASUREMENTS ANALYSIS
RESULTS EVALUATION

Realiable
Database

SIMULATIONS TO EVALUATE CALCULATION OF OIL


SYSTEM EFFICIENCY
INTEGRAL WELL PRODUCTION
POTENTIAL
METHODOLOGY

IDENTIFICATION OF LOW EFFICIENCY DIAGNOSIS AND SYSTEM EVALUATION OF DESIGN AND


CAUSES AND RECOMMENDATIONS EFFICIENCY DETERMINATION CRITERIAS USED TO SELECT THE
TO IMPROVE IT EQUIPMENT

Figure 1: Integral Methodology UPC GLOBAL

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First step: review and update of the oil well history and verification of
downhole pump’s operating conditions with Total Asset Monitor (TAM), through
which is possible to check the fluid level and conditions of the pump.

KEY ISSUES TO VERIFY THE FLUID LEVEL


• Take fluid level (level identify)
• Build-up pressure (for a short period of time)
• Check count necklaces (collars)
• Estimate the submergence of the pump

KEY ISSUES TO ASSESS CONDITIONS OF THE PUMP


• Dynamometer chart analysis, in order to verify the operating conditions of the pump
• Valve testing (measuring load on each to check their condition)
• Export DIN file, which is a format compatible with most rod pumping software

Figure 2: General diagram of measurement points with Echometer

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Second step: Check the data to be use for simulation, in the case of rod
pumping wells, the THETA suite is used.

• Well production conditions (BBPD, AyS%)


• Mechanical conditions as: diameter tubing, casing diameter, anchor gas etc.
• Survey
• Artificial lift system installed
a) Pumping unit (manufacturer, model, length of stroke, counterweight)
b) Rod string and polished rod (degree, lengths and diameters)
c) Pump (type, diameter of the piston)
d) Anchors gas and anchors tubing
e) Engine size and type.

UNIDAD DE UNIT
PUMPING BOMBEO

GEAR BOX

CAJA
GEAR DE
BOX
ENGRANAJE
BARRA
PULIDA
POLISHED
UNIDAD STUFFING
PRENSA BOX
ENGINE UNIT ROD
MOTRIZ ESTOPA
FLOWLINE
LINEA DE FLUJO

CASING
REVESTIDOR

TUBING
TUBERIA

SARTA DE STRING
ROD CABILLAS

PUMP
BOMBA
PERFORACIONES
CASING HOLES
DEL
REVESTIDOR

Figure 3: Rod pump artificial lift system general diagram

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Third step: Identify optimization opportunities, evaluate how the
system operates and how it would work with an increase of the length of the
stroke or the pump speed (SPM), for example.

The Theta suite allows to perform the process swiftly, allowing more analysis in less
time as detailed in the next steps.

Figure 4: Some softwares of THETA Suite

Fourth step: Knowing the maximum momentum of counterbalance by


using the XBAL software, it is required to have information about surface unit’s
counterweights, to identify the right order of installation.

Figure 5: XBal software

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Fifth step: Diagnose current well conditions with XDIAG software, to carry
out this analysis, it is required to load the previous Dyn file generated in the Total
Asset Monitor (TAM) application and enter the well data corresponding to:

• Current production
• Pump Submergence
• Features of the pump and rod string (sections)
• Service factor (this varies depending on the time of use of the rod string)
• Surface unit
• Maximum counterbalance momentum obtained in XBAL
• Stroke length
• Electricity costs

Simulations are performed in XDIAG software, generating a report with a diagnostic


about the current operating conditions of the system in terms of load on the rod string,
surface unit and gearbox (Figure 6).

Based on the results of the simulation, it is possible to take some optimization actions
as increase the stroke length and/or pump speed. However, it is necessary to assess the
impact of such actions before their implementation.

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Figure 6: XDiag Report

Sixth step: Forecast pumping conditions in the case that optimization


actions are carried out. The Rodstar software allows this process, as follows:

• Load the file previously generated in XDIAG

• Check the values exported from XDIAG to RODSTAR

• Simulate and compare the current dynamometer chart with the predictive one

• Adjust the friction coefficient in order to match the loads as better possible. This
process is performed iteratively until achieve the loading match according to the
results generated by the TAM application.

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• Modify the values of the variables related with optimization actions such as varying
stroke length, piston speed among others

• Verify the new conditions with the changes such as the load on the sucker rod, in
the structure of the surface equipment and in the gearbox.

• If the gearbox is overloaded due to the production increase it is possible that the
unit will be unbalanced. In this case the maximum momentum of counterbalance is
exported to the software XBAL

Figura 7: Rodstar graph and resports

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Seventh step: Analyze the unit balance by minimum torque or minimum
energy in the XbaI software.

• Load the file previously generated in the fourth step

• The value is imported from RODSTAR to balance the unit after the proposed changes

• As a result the XBAL software shows different optimization options like changing the
position of 4 weights or 2 of them. The more practical field option is selected

• Then a run is performed in XBAL to obtain results

Figure 8: Software XBal main screen

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Eighth step: Results analysis.
• Compare simulations results with current production, through valid tests production
and specialized studies to determine the current well conditions.

• Identify fluid level with Echometer

• Evaluate the operating conditions and identify opportunities for improvement in a


future workover, such as: redesigning rods string, if operate at maximum load and
the potential of the well has not been reached yet or a pump redesign which an
efficiency ranges between 75% - 85%.

To implement this methodology aimed to improve wells productivity, allows the


definition of actions and optimal strategies, which will result in increasing oil daily net
contributions, minimize operating costs and increase the lifetime of downhole and surface
equipment.

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