Hart’s E&P: ESP Surveillance Mitigates Production Threats

While electric submersible pumping (ESP) systems provide economical, efficient and flexible recovery solutions, failure to properly manage early-stage shutdowns in unconventional wells can defer production, lead to escalating intervention and workover costs and diminishing long-term asset value. In unconventional wells, the production stream is highly volatile for the initial 90 to 120 days after first oil. During this critical period, frack sand flowback, erratic flow rates and gas slugs can negatively impact the production environment. Industry data show that ESP systems are shut down an average of 10% during the IP phase of these wells. A recent study found that one-third of alerts generated by automated production systems during the first 90 days would have likely led to ESP shutdowns if nothing was done to resolve the underlying problems. Twenty-four hour surveillance during early-stage production can mitigate threats posed by dynamic downhole conditions on production system performance and longevity….

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