CATEGORIZED | News

ADNOC looks to artificial islands, EOR to boost production

Posted on 10 May 2011

Improved EOR techniques and the building of artificial islands are key elements of the strategy that the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) is implementing to boost production capacity from 2.8 million bbl/day of oil with condensates now to 3.8 million bbl/day by 2020, ADNOC manager offshore division, Ali Khalifa Al Shamsi told OTC delegates in Houston on 4 May.

The artificial islands concept will play a critical role on the Upper Zakum field, the largest offshore oilfield in UAE history, currently producing 550,000 bbl/day. More than 450 total wells have been drilled on the field, over 300 of them horizontal. Five jackups are deployed on the field, along with six land-based rigs to support the FFDP (full field development plan) by extended-reach drilling (ERD) and maximum reservoir contact (MRC) wells from artificial islands, Mr Al Shamsi said.

Four such islands will be built initially – South, North, Central and West. This is a reduction from the previously planned seven, made possible with the use of ERD technologies, Mr Al Shamsi said. Additionally, MRC technology will reduce the number of wells required on each island. “We are confident that we will be able to work with our partners to turn those artificial islands into realities. The shelf life of those islands will be almost 100 years,” he added. ADNOC and its partners hope to achieve a production of 750,000 bbl/day on the field by 2015.

Gas is also a key component of ADNOC’s exploration program. “The UAE has the fifth-largest gas reserves (in the world). Currently Abu Dhabi depends almost totally on natural gas for power generation. Demand for electricity in the Emirates will grow by 11% (a year) through 2019 due to the expected growth in the residential and commercial projects and the industrial sectors,” Mr Al Shamsi said. Meeting this demand is a major challenge for ADNOC, and “we are trying to add about 1 to 2 TCF of gas reserves annually,” he continued.

This won’t be an easy task, considering the high sourness of many gas reserves in the UAE. For example, on Shah, a major onshore gas field, ADNOC estimates there is about 17 TCF of gas in place, yet they’ll have to contend with a high H2S content of 23% and a CO2 content of 10% or more in order to extract those reserves. High pressures and temperatures add another layer of difficulty, Mr Al Shamsi said.

He believes that ADNOC will have future needs in the three primary areas of EOR, sour gas development and minimizing environmental footprints. Early adoption of technology will be necessary to ensure sustainable production, and ADNOC is already taking regional initiatives in techniques like nitrogen substitution and CO2 EOR, he said. Tight gas and unconventional resources are being evaluated as well.

Leave a Reply

*

FEATURED MICROSITES


Recent Drilling News

  • 24 October 2014

    GDF SUEZ, BP discover new Central North Sea Field

    “This is an encouraging exploration discovery in a part of the Central North Sea that needs additional volumes of hydrocarbons to open up development options…

  • 24 October 2014

    Chevron, BP discover oil in deepwater US Gulf of Mexico

    The discovery well, on Keathley Canyon Block 10, was drilled by operator Chevron on behalf of the Guadalupe co-owners. The well encountered significant oil pay…

  • 22 October 2014

    Shell discovers gas in pre-salt reservoir offshore Gabon

    Shell announced a frontier exploration discovery offshore Gabon, West Africa. The well Leopard-1 encountered a substantial gas column with around 200 m net gas pay…

  • 22 October 2014

    Statoil proves new oil resources near Grane field in North Sea

    Well 25/8-18 S, drilled by the rig Transocean Leader, proved an oil column of 25 m in the Heimdal Formation. The estimated volume of the discovery…

  • 21 October 2014

    IADC Cybersecurity Task Group to provide industry guidance to assess risks

    The oil and gas industry is not immune to cybersecurity threats, from computer viruses and malware to targeted attacks. The IADC Advanced Rig Technology (ART) Committee…

  • Read more news