Research Article | Open Access
Pressure Drop Equations for a Partially Penetrating Vertical Well in a Circular Cylinder Drainage Volume
Taking a partially penetrating vertical well as a uniform line sink in three-dimensional space, by developing necessary mathematical analysis, this paper presents unsteady-state pressure drop equations for an off-center partially penetrating vertical well in a circular cylinder drainage volume with constant pressure at outer boundary. First, the point sink solution to the diffusivity equation is derived, then using superposition principle, pressure drop equations for a uniform line sink model are obtained. This paper also gives an equation to calculate pseudoskin factor due to partial penetration. The proposed equations provide fast analytical tools to evaluate the performance of a vertical well which is located arbitrarily in a circular cylinder drainage volume. It is concluded that the well off-center distance has significant effect on well pressure drop behavior, but it does not have any effect on pseudoskin factor due to partial penetration. Because the outer boundary is at constant pressure, when producing time is sufficiently long, steady-state is definitely reached. When well producing length is equal to payzone thickness, the pressure drop equations for a fully penetrating well are obtained.
For both fully and partially penetrating vertical wells, steady-state and unsteady-state pressure-transient testings are useful tools for evaluating in situ reservoir and wellbore parameters that describe the production characteristics of a well. The use of transient well testing for determining reservoir parameters and well productivity has become common, in the past years, analytic solutions have been presented for the pressure behavior of partially penetrating vertical wells.
In many oil and gas reservoirs the producing wells are completed as partially penetrating wells; that is, only a portion of the pay zone is perforated. This may be done for a variety of reasons, but the most common one is to prevent or delay the unwanted fluids into the wellbore. The exact solution of the partial penetration problem presents great analytical problems because the boundary conditions that the solutions of the partial differential equations must satisfy are mixed; that is, on one of the boundaries the pressure is specified on one portion and the flux on the other. This difficult occurs at the wellbore, for the flux over the nonproductive section of the well is zero, the potential over the perforated interval must be constant.
This problem may be overcome in the case of constant rate production by making the assumption that the flux into the well is uniform over the entire perforated interval, so that on the wellbore the flux is specified over the total formation thickness. This approximation naturally leads to an error in the solution since the potential (pressure) will not be uniform over the perforated interval, but it has been shown that this occurrence is not too significant.
Many different techniques have been used for solving the partial penetration problem, namely, finite difference method , Fourier, Hankel and Laplace transforms [3–5], Green's functions . The analytical expressions and the numerical results obtained for reservoir pressures by different methods were essentially identical, however, there are some differences between the values of wellbore pressures computed from numerical models and those obtained from analytical solutions .
The primary goal of this study is to present unsteady state pressure drop equations for an off-center partially penetrating vertical well in a circular cylinder drainage volume. Analytical solutions are derived by making the assumption of uniform fluid withdrawal along the portion of the wellbore open to flow. Taking the producing portion of a partially penetrating well as a uniform line sink, using principle of potential superposition, pressure drop equations for a partially penetrating well are obtained.
2. Partially Penetrating Vertical Well Model
Figure 1 is a schematic of an off-center partially penetrating vertical well. A partially penetrating well of drilled length drains a circular cylinder porous volume with height and radius .
The following assumptions are made.
(1)The porous media volume is circular cylinder which has constant permeabilities, thickness , porosity . And the porous volume is bounded by top and bottom impermeable boundaries.(2)The pressure is initially constant in the cylindrical body, during production the pressure remains constant and equal to the initial pressure at the lateral surface.(3)The production occurs through a partially penetrating vertical well of radius , represented in the model by a uniform line sink which is located at away from the axis of symmetry of the cylindrical body. The drilled well length is , the producing well length is .(4)A single-phase fluid, of small and constant compressibility , constant viscosity , and formation volume factor , flows from the porous media to the well. Fluids properties are independent of pressure. Gravity forces are neglected.
The porous media domain iswhere is cylinder radius, is the cylindrical body.
Located at away from the center of the cylindrical body, the coordinates of the top and bottom points of the well line are () and (), respectively, while point () and point () are the beginning point and end point of the producing portion of the well, respectively. The well is a uniform line sink between () and (), and there holds
We assumeand define average permeability
Suppose point is on the producing portion, and its point convergence intensity is , in order to obtain the pressure at point caused by the point , according to mass conservation law and Darcy's law, we have to obtain the basic solution of the diffusivity equation in :where is total compressibility coefficient of porous media, , , are Dirac functions.
The initial condition is
The lateral boundary condition iswhere is the cylindrical lateral surface:
The porous media domain is bounded by top and bottom impermeable boundaries, so
In order to simplify the above equations, we take the following dimensionless transforms:
Assuming is the point convergence intensity at the point sink , the partially penetrating well is a uniform line sink, the total flow rate of the well is , and there holds
Define dimensionless pressures
If point and point are with distances and , respectively, from the circular center, then the dimensionless off-center distances are
Since the reservoir is with constant pressure outer boundary (edge water), in order to delay water encroachment, a producing well must keep a sufficient distance from the outer boundary. Thus in this paper, it is reasonable to assume
Ifthen and ifthen
Recall (2.22), according to the above calculations, without losing generality, there holds
In the same manner, we have
3. Point Sink Solution
For convenience in the following reference, we use dimensionless transforms given by (2.10) through (2.17), every variable, domain, initial and boundary conditions below should be taken as dimensionless, but we drop the subscript .
Thus, if the point sink is at , (2.19) can be written aswhere
The equation of initial condition is changed to
The equation of lateral boundary condition is changed towhere
The problem under consideration is that of fluid flow toward a point sink from an off-center position within a circular of radius . We want to determine the pressure change at an observation point with a distance from the center of circle.
Figure 2 is a geometric representation of the system. In Figure 2, the point sink and the observation point , are with distances and , respectively, from the circular center; and the two points are separated at the center by an angle . The inverse point of the point sink with respect to the circle is point . Point with a distance from the center, and from the observation point. The inverse point is the point outside the circle, on the extension of the line connecting the center and the point sink, and such that
If the observation point is on the drainage circle, , then
If the observation point is on the wellbore, then
Taking the Laplace transform at the both sides of (3.13), thenwhereand is Laplace transform variable.
Case 1. If , thenwhere
Because is continuously bounded within , but , there holds
There hold [9, 10]where is modified Bessel function of second kind and order is modified Bessel function of first kind and order is Bessel function of first kind and order is Hankel function of first kind and order , and .
And there hold (see [14, page 979])
So, we obtain
Defineand recall (3.29), then we havewhere
In the appendix, we can prove
And there holdswhere is Inverse Laplace transform operator.
Since are simple poles of meromorphic function , if using partial fraction expansion of meromorphic function, there holds where are residues at poles respectively, and is the th root of equation
From (3.48), we havewhere
Using Laplace asymptotic integration (see [16, page 221]), when is sufficiently large, thentherefore,
There holds 
is defined as real part operator, for example, means real part of , There holdsand define is a complex number.
Note that , recall (3.53), define
In the above equations, is exponential integral function,
Recall (3.27), there holds
Equation (3.73) is the pressure distribution equation of an off-center point sink in the cylindrical body. If the point sink and the observation point are not on a radius of the drainage circle, , recall (3.7), cannot be simplified, we cannot obtain exact inverse Laplace transform of (3.73), but if necessary, we may obtain numerical inverse Laplace transform results.
If the point sink is at the center of the drainage circle, then
In Figure 2, if the point sink and the observation point are on a radius, then
4. Uniform Line Sink Solution
Although the off-center partially penetrating vertical well is represented in the model by a line sink, we only concern in the pressures at the wellbore face.
For convenience, in the following reference, every variable below is dimensionless but we drop the subscript .
The well line sink is located along the line . If the observation point is on the wellbore, , note that , and there hold thenand recall (3.64), then
In order to calculate the pressure at the wellbore, using principle of potential superposition, integrating at both sides of (3.72) from to , then
Recall (3.26), and note that we haveand definebecause when is very small, (time is sufficiently long), there holdsso when time is sufficiently long,
Therefore, the wellbore pressure at point is
Considering the bottom point of the well line sink, then , thus , in this case, (4.12) reduces towherewhere is the integer part of
For it holds the following estimate:
So, (4.14) reduces to
5. Dimensionless Wellbore Pressure Equations
Equation (5.1) is applicable to impermeable upper and lower boundaries and long after the time when pressure transient reaches the upper and lower boundaries. And denotes pseudo-skin factor due to partial penetration.
If , the drilled well length is equal to formation thickness, for a fully penetrating well, (5.1) reduces to
If the well is located at the center of the cylindrical body, then there holds
If the well is a fully penetrating well in an infinite reservoir, , there holds
Thus, (5.6) reduces to
Substitute (2.12) and (2.15) into (2.17), then simplify and rearrange the resulting equation, we obtainwhere is total flow rate of the well, and can be calculated by (5.1), (5.4), (5.6), and (5.8) for different cases.
During production, the unsteady state pressure drop of an off-center partially penetrating vertical well in a circular cylinder drainage volume can be calculated by (5.9).
6. Examples and Discussions
Recall (5.2), pseudo-skin factor due to partial penetration is a function of and is not a function of well off-center distance or drainage radius .
If we definethen (6.1) can be written as
Example 6.1. Equation (6.4) shows that pseudo-skin factor is a function of the three parameters , fix two parameters, and generate plots that show the trend of with the third parameter.
Case 1. Figure 3 shows the trend of with when , it can be found that is a weak decreasing function of .
Case 2. Figure 4 shows the trend of with when , it can be found that is an increasing function of . When is a constant, we may assume is a constant, then is also a constant; when increases, also increases, thus the well producing length decreases, and pseudo-skin factor due to partial penetration increases.