Unloading using auger tool and foam and experimental identification of liquid loading of low rate natural gas wells
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Low-pressure, low-producing natural gas wells commonly encounter liquid loading during production. Because of the decline in the reservoir pressure and the flow capacity, wells can fall below terminal velocity. Identifying and predicting the onset of liquid loading allows the operators to plan and prepare for combating the liquid loading hence saving valuable reserves and downtime. The present industrial applications of artificial lift, wellhead pressure reduction by compressor installation at the wellheads and reduction in tubing size are costly and often intermittent. The thesis examines the above aspects to generate a workflow for identifying and predicting the liquid loading conclusively and also assessing the application of Auger Tool and foam combination towards achieving a cost effective and more efficient solution for liquid unloading. In chapters I-IV, I describe the process of using production surveillance software of Halliburton Digital Consulting Services, named DSS (Dynamic Surveillance Software), to create a workflow of identifying the liquid loaded wells based on well data on daily basis for field personnel and engineers. This workflow also decides the most cost effective solution to handle it. Moreover, it can perform decline analysis to predict the conditions of liquid loading. In chapters V-VIII of the thesis, I describe the effort of handling the problem of liquid loading in a cost effective manner by introduction of an inexpensive Auger Tool in the bottomhole assembly and using WhiteMax surfactant soapstick from J&J Solutions. Four different combinations of well completion and fluid were tested for performance in respect to liquid hold up, pressure loss in the tubing, unloading efficiency and critical flow requirement. The test facilities and instruments, along with the operational methods, are discussed in chapter VI. Except for the reduction of the operational envelope with the inclusion of Auger Tool, the performance improved with the insertion of Auger Tool. The best combination of Auger and foam system could be a result of flow modification by the Auger Tool caused by reduced pressure loss and increase in drag coefficient and also by reduced density and surface tension of foam.
Bose, Rana (2003). Unloading using auger tool and foam and experimental identification of liquid loading of low rate natural gas wells. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from