The holy grail of well measurement

The holy grail of well measurement

September 20, 2019

The initial situation

Many oil and gas field operators are concerned about the same situation: Reducing their reservoir factors. However you turn the tide, oil and gas are limited resources. What happens if their reservoir will be used up? Year after year, they visit conferences and exhibitions, listen to presentations of technology suppliers, read specialized magazines, etc. in search of the ultimate answer.

The oilfield factor

What is the oilfield factor? Normally at some point during the day, operators close the stock and flow that each oilfield facility was able to produce. In the same way, a calculation is made of the estimated flow that each well reporting to that facility may have contributed. To determine this estimated flow there are several methods. The quotient between the production of the surface facility and the wells reporting to it is the “oilfield factor”. In oilfields with low levels of instrumentation, well measurement methods and control mechanisms, these factors may be at 0.9 or even much lower (such as 0.8 or 0.75). Most of that difference is attributed to the so-called “non-localized losses”, i.e., the production that you expected to have at the surface facility, but ultimately could not have. What is the reason for the non-localized losses? As said in the label “non-localized losses”, you could not localize the reason for the losses yet.

The holy grail of well measurement

If we could detect the causes of these differences, and attack them in time, we could have in the surface installation practically all the production that it was estimated to have. Wouldn’t this be wonderful? These non-localized losses produce millionaire losses to the companies, and during all the history of the oil and gas industry, the companies have been worried about finding a definitive solution.

In order to do this, the well must be measured correctly. And when we say correctly it is not only in terms of precision but also in terms of frequency.

Continuously there are more and better solutions for a better measurement of wells, and in this way contributing to the reduction of the reservoir factor and non-localized losses. However, a unique and efficient solution does not seem to exist so far, it is the holy grail of well measurements.

Nor, like the Holy Grail, is it known whether that long-awaited solution would be the solution to all reservoir factor problems, non-localized losses, production needs, and reservoir needs. Perhaps we should look outside the box.


In my next post, we will see in detail what well testing is: Why it does worry the oil and gas operators, why it is done, how it is done and the different methodologies and workflows involved.

Picture credits: ronniechua-




No Comments so far

Jump into a conversation

No Comments Yet!

You can be the one to start a conversation.

Your data will be safe!Your e-mail address will not be published. Also other data will not be shared with third person.