C&C Reservoirs Publication

An Empirical Analog Benchmarking Workflow to Improve Hydrocarbon Recovery

An Empirical Analog Benchmarking Workflow to Improve Hydrocarbon Recovery

Written by Shaoqing Sun and David A. Pollitt
https://doi.org/10.2118/208612-PA
SPE Res Eval & Eng 1–18.
Paper Number: SPE-208612-PA
Copyright © 2021 Society of Petroleum Engineers

Abstract

Benchmarking the recovery factor and production performance of a given reservoir against applicable analogues is a key step in field development optimization and a prerequisite in understanding the necessary actions required to improve hydrocarbon recovery. Existing benchmarking methods are principally structured to solve specific problems in individual situations and, consequently, are difficult to apply widely and consistently. This study presents an alternative empirical analogue benchmarking workflow that is based upon systematic analysis of more than 1,600 reservoirs from around the world. This workflow is designed for effective, practical, and repeatable application of analogue analysis to all reservoir types, development scenarios, and production challenges. It comprises five key steps: (1) definition of problems and objectives; (2) parameterization of the target reservoir; (3) quantification of resource potential; (4) assessment of production performance; and (5) identification of best practices and lessons learned.

Problems of differing nature and for different objectives require different sets of analogues. This workflow advocates starting with a broad set of parameters to find a wide range of analogues for quantification of resource potential, followed by a narrowly defined set of parameters to find relevant analogues for assessment of production performance. During subsequent analysis of the chosen analogues, the focus is on isolating specific critical issues and identifying a smaller number of applicable analogues that more closely match the target reservoir with the aim to document both best practices and lessons learned.

This workflow aims to inform decisions by identifying the best-in-class performers and examining in detail what differentiates them. It has been successfully applied to improve hydrocarbon recovery for carbonate, clastic, and basement reservoirs globally. The case studies provided herein demonstrate that this workflow has real-world utility in the identification of upside recovery potential and specific actions that can be taken to optimize production and recovery.

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Author Statement by Shaoqing Sun

“This article represents the culmination of years of dedicated study to mature from concept to completion. We hope that our efforts will help advance the scientific application of global analogues in reservoir performance benchmarking. Our article presents an empirical analogue benchmarking workflow that is practical for maximizing hydrocarbon recovery in any given situation and is applicable to all reservoir types, development scenarios, and production challenges. Using this workflow, practitioners can identify upside recovery potential in producing assets efficiently and replicate the best practices used at top performing analogues. This workflow is intended to introduce a simple, practical, and effective solution to removing the bias that currently exists in the use of analogue information.”

Author Statement by David A. Pollitt

“Maximizing the efficient recovery of hydrocarbons has never been more important. This study demonstrates how, using appropriate analogues in a rigorous, quantifiable, and repeatable workflow, operators can reduce risk, reduce cost and improve outcomes on their producing assets. This workflow aims to inform decisions by identifying the best-in-class performers and examining in detail what differentiates them. It has been successfully applied to improve hydrocarbon recovery for carbonate, clastic, and basement reservoirs globally. I hope that through this publication the quantitative use of analogues is adopted more widely in the upstream industry and leads to more efficient development of natural hydrocarbon resources.”

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