Application of Buckingham Theorem in the Prediction of Sand Production Rate for Unconsolidated Sandstone Reservoirs Bounded by Active Water Aquifer

Daniel Oji Ndem, Stanley I. Onwukwe, U. J. Obibuike, N. U. Okereke, N. C. Izuwa, C. M. Ohaegbulam


Sand production has been the prime challenge daring the hydrocarbon industry due to its unacceptable influences on oil recovery factor, surface and subsurface production facilities especially in the Niger Delta where the landscape is festooned with unconsolidated sand face. The production of sand reduces the oil recovery volume resulting to deficit economic withdrawal due to shutdown periods for remedial works and replacement cost of damaged equipment. So much exertion has been made on forecasting the sand face breakdown and/or sand production rate, most of these prediction models typified high reliance on geo-mechanistic approach which is hinged on rock mechanism alone. This paper therefore homogenized the rock, reservoir and production data such as compressive strength pressure drawdown, water cut, and production rate, confining pressure, viscosity and sand grain size to develop a simplistic predictive model for sand production rate by applying Buckingham Theorem. The model through its development proved that the collapse of formation sand face does not necessarily translate to sand production but the onset of water-cut triggers sand production. The model was explicit on sand grain size affect on sand production, it nullified the argument expressed in some researches that sand grain size affects sand production; it also showed that viscosity of the fluid is not influential on sand production rate. The model was validated using a real reservoir data from one of the wells in the Niger Delta.



Sand production; Buckingham theorem; Production rate; Compressive strength; Water cut; Pressure drawdown

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