An Investigation of Horizontal Well Completions Using a Two-Phase Model Coupling Reservoir and Horizontal Well Flow Dynamics

Ronaldo Vicente, Cem Sarica, Turgay Ertekin

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

7 Scopus citations


A fully implicit, three-dimensional simulator with local hybrid grid refinement around the wellbore solving reservoir and horizontal well flow equations simultaneously for liquid-gas flow systems is used to investigate the effects of permeability, gas saturation, well length, well diameter, reservoir anisotropy and perforation/slot phase angle on the well productivity behavior. In addition, the effect of the coil-tubing diameter on the two-phase production logging measurements is studied. The model implements the conservation of mass equations in the reservoir and conservation of mass and momentum in the wellbore for isothermal conditions. The establishment of the continuity of pressure and preservation of mass balance at the sandface satisfy the coupling requirements between the two computational domains. The hydrodynamic model for the wellbore is based on the homogeneous flow assumption. In this paper, we show that the indiscriminate use of single-phase flow models to predict the productivity of horizontal wells producing under multi-phase flow conditions can lead to significant errors and the magnitude of the discrepancy increases with reservoir permeability and gas saturation. Also, for multiphase flow conditions, pressure drop along the wellbore plays a crucial role in the asymmetrical flux distribution profile and should not be ignored. The seriousness of the problem is considerably aggravated in long wells, slim holes, high permeabilities and high gas saturation systems. In some completion designs, the simulations have shown that 70% of the production comes from the first 1/6 of the total well length. In other examples, the last third of the well length contributes with less then 2% of the total production. It has been shown that in anisotropic systems, a more uniform flux distribution is obtained with openings aligned orthogonal to the larger permeability direction. Regarding to production logging applications, a significant deviation on the measurements and actual behavior can be observed, depending especially on the ratio between well and coil tubing diameter. The proposed model can be a useful tool in generating the appropriate corrections for the undesirable effects of the coil tubing on production logging measurements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages13
StatePublished - 2001
EventProceedings of the 2001 SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition - New Orleans, LA, United States
Duration: Sep 30 2001Oct 3 2001


OtherProceedings of the 2001 SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew Orleans, LA

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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