Challenging Fields: Complex Facilities and Multi-Reservoir Production Managem...

by Dr. Clare Maher

iEnergy® Editor in Chief, Halliburton Landmark



The continued need to replace hydrocarbon reserves to meet global demand requires the exploration and production (E&P) industry to explore and produce from increasingly complicated plays. Finding this precious resource is only half the battle—it is not worth a dime until it is out of the ground. The subsurface complexity of new assets and the targeting of multiple reservoirs will often require complex surface and subsurface facilities to produce the hydrocarbons in the most economical manner.

As with most things in the natural world, every oil and gas field is unique. There is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Therefore, reservoir and production engineers must choose tools that provide both flexibility and reliability if they are to be successful in optimizing their operations. With so many moving parts and variables to consider, the optimization of such challenging fields can only be achieved with the support of specialized modeling software.


Asset operators use reservoir simulation models to predict the outcome of different approaches to field development, ensuring that complex surface facilities are operated to maximize economic benefit. However, the more complex the facilities and the operating scenarios, the longer it takes for the simulation to run. Another challenge is accurately capturing the effects that the surface and subsurface conditions have on one another. Failure to do this properly can cause non-physical model behavior, in addition to compromising the robustness and performance of the simulation. For example, the effects of pressure feedback generated by surface facilities can only be captured accurately when the wells and surface facilities are considered as an integrated system.

There are many different reservoir simulation software packages available on the market, but the only one that offers a fully coupled surface-subsurface modeling solution is Nexus® reservoir simulation software. It also enables users to develop their own dynamic procedures describing facility operation. These features, among others, were put forward in two case studies presented by BP engineers in a recent iEnergy® webinar: BP Case Studies: Challenging Fields - Complex Facilities and Multi-Reservoir Production Management.” During this webinar, the engineers discussed how they leveraged Nexus software to generate multiple scenarios for the Greater Plutonio Field, offshore Angola and the Prudhoe Bay Field, Alaska.

The ever-increasing complexity of reservoir and production optimization presents the E&P industry with significant challenges. However, high-performance reservoir simulation technology, like Nexus software, can help manage and optimize even the most challenging fields. To learn more about how your peers are putting this into practice, you can watch this iEnergy webinar today.