Artificial lift is a key component in oil and gas production. Most unconventional wells end up with some form of artificial lift in the first 2-3 years of their life. Artificial lift failure is one of the major causes of unplanned downtime. Managing artificial lift performance to reduce failure is crucial for improved economics. Due to rapid decline of the pressure and the flow rates in unconventional wells, understanding well performance is the key for optimization of artificial lift. With falling well productivity as the well becomes older, the maintenance and associated costs increase. The only way to keep the well running cost-efficiently is to reduce the operating cost by reducing downtime and failures. A best practice is to apply a process over the life cycle of the artificial lift system that includes selection or re-selection, redesign, and proactive management of the lift system.
This presentation will discuss how an integrated life cycle approach for artificial lift is key and how it impacts the bottom line of an oil producer. By leveraging the technology to its full potential, production can be managed better and more profitable. Examples of artificial lift management will be presented, along with methodologies to estimate well performance in unconventional reservoirs. Understanding and managing the artificial lift performance using life-cycle approach is vital for improving a well’s uptime and reliability.
Subash K. Kannan has 18 years of experience in the petroleum industry with 15 years in production, and operations both onshore and offshore. On Anadarko’s Technology team, he strategically focused on well performance and artificial lift life cycle management of unconventional wells, and he was one of the founding members of Anadarko’s digital oil field. He is currently the Lead Reservoir Engineer for Occidental’s Western Gulf of Mexico assets. Previously, at Weatherford, he managed nodal analysis and real-time optimization tools, and his experience with Ziff Energy Group involved operating cost and artificial lift benchmarking. Mr. Kannan is one of the subject matter experts for production engineering and teaches a class on Well Performance Analysis.
Mr. Kannan holds bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from University of Madras, India and master’s degree in Petroleum Engineering from University of Houston. He served on the SPE Gulf Coast Section board from 2010-2014 and is an active contributor to various Section committees.