The Application of a New and Unique Relative Permeability Modifier in Selectively Reducing Water Production
The need to reduce water production through the use of low-risk chemical treatments is becoming an everyday reality in the oil and gas industry today. Rising exploration and development costs, along with ever-increasing water management costs, require that cost-effective methods of reducing unwanted water production be developed and implemented. To address this issue, a new relative permeability modifier system has been developed. The RPM is uniquely formulated to effectively treat sandstone or carbonate formation matrices. The relative permeability modifier selectively reduces the permeability to water, without detrimentally affecting oil or gas permeability.
This new water management treatment approach provides simplicity in job application, is viable over a wide range of reservoir types, lithologies, and permeabilities, and can be employed in a broad range of job types, including matrix injection and hydraulic fracturing treatments. This paper summarizes a successful fracturing treatment application employing the new relative permeability modifier.
The concept of water control through the use of relative permeability modifiers (RPMs) is receiving increased attention among oil and gas operators. Escalating costs associated with the disposal of produced water necessitate the need for a new approach to restrict water production. It is estimated that the industry spends over $40 billion annually to manage water, with over $10 billion in the United States alone. In response, a new and unique relative permeability modifier system has been developed for a broad range of applications. It is designed to be placed directly into matrix porosity of sandstone or carbonate reservoirs that are identified as having the potential to produce unwanted amounts of water. The placement of the RPM into water-bearing formations selectively reduces the effective permeability to water, without a corresponding reduction in either oil or gas permeability.
Historically, the ability to control water production, including in conjunction with fracturing treatments, has been achieved through selective perforating, or mechanical isolation techniques requiring costly well intervention. With respect to wells selectively perforated, subsequent stimulation processes utilizing acid or hydraulic fracturing often employ modified pumping techniques intended to maintain isolation of the producing interval from nearby water producing zones. However, such methods are not reliable. In many instances, the target reservoir is under-stimulated for fear of a detrimental increase in water production.
In order to address water control in a low-risk, intervention-less manner, a new versatile RPM system has been developed for matrix and fracture treatment applications.GO TO paper