Japan Section


  • 2021-2022 1st Distinguished Lecture Program

    Wednesday, December 1, 2021, 04:00 PM - 05:30 PM JP
    SmartWater Flooding Mechanisms and Water Chemistry Guidelines for Carbonates Subhash Ayirala (Saudi Aramco) Abstract: SmartWater flooding (SWF) through tuning of injection water salinity and ionic compositions is becoming attractive for improved/enhanced oil recovery in carbonate reservoirs. However, the pore scale mechanisms responsible for oil recovery in SmartWater flooding are not completely understood yet and furthermore there are no clear guidelines available to design injection water chemistries for field applications. This lecture unravels these existing mysteries by presenting the data acquired from a series of multiscale experiments (nano-micro-macroscopic-core scales) to explore the interactions of salinity and aqueous ions at oil/brine and carbonate-oil/brine interfaces. The systematic analyses of multiscale aqueous-ion interactions at the two interfaces showed that SmartWater effect in carbonates is a combination of two effects, one being related to the release of oil attached on rock surfaces (wettability change) and the other being related to improved oil-phase connectivity and better oil mobilization (enhanced coalescence of oil ganglia). The results obtained from several case studies are also discussed to demonstrate the efficiency of SWF technology to mobilize residual oil at well scale in addition to providing some economic estimates. This talk highlights two important takeaway points: (1) Not every low salinity water can become a SmartWater for carbonates, and (2) SmartWater is nothing but a tailored water chemistry containing certain salinity and selective composition of three key ions including sulfates, magnesium, and calcium. These new learnings and major findings will provide useful practical guidelines on how to efficiently design injection water compositions and obtain higher oil recoveries from waterflooding projects in carbonate reservoirs. Biography: Subhash Ayirala is the Champion of SmartWater flooding at Saudi Aramco’s Exploration and Petroleum Engineering Center—Advanced Research Center, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. He holds MS and PhD degrees in petroleum engineering from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, USA. He has written over 75 technical papers, 50+ journal publications, and holds 20 granted patents. He is SPE distinguished member and currently serves as co-executive editor of SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering. Ayirala received SPE Outstanding Technical Editor recognition 9-times (most recent one in 2020) and is also a recipient of the 2017 SPE A Peer Apart Award.

  • 2021-2022 2nd Distinguished Lecture Program

    Wednesday, January 12, 2022, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM JP
    Machine Learning: Is it Magic or Hard Work? Ridvan Akkurt (Schlumberger) Abstract: Machine Learning (ML) has become a key tool to analyze large datasets, detecting previously unforeseen patterns or extracting unexpected insights in high-dimensional space. ML workflows can process large volumes of data efficiently with less bias and subjectivity introduced by humans. Unfortunately, the present level of excitement in the industry, fueled by many publications that highlight only the successful case histories, has created a sense of magic where ML (or Artificial Intelligence) is considered the solution to many difficult and challenging problems. As in the case of any other emerging technology, the power of ML, if unleashed without proper controls and practices in-place, especially without the understanding of the uncertainties in the answers, will lead to erroneous results, adversely affecting the acceptance of the new technologies in the long run. The objective of this talk is to identify the requirements and the critical components that are needed to build robust ML systems; and illustrate their impact and effectiveness by sharing examples from real-life projects. The industry can benefit from the new technologies only by being careful, cautious and realistic; and with the understanding that to get to the magic of ML, one must be prepared to do the hard work. To get to the magic of Machine Learning, we need to be prepared to do the hard work. Biography: Ridvan Akkurt is a Petrophysics Advisor in the Schlumberger Artificial Intelligence and Analytics Group, based in Denver, USA. He was previously Research Director at Schlumberger-Doll Research in Boston, heading the Geoscience Department. Ridvan began his career in 1983 as a Schlumberger wireline field engineer in Africa, then worked for GSI, Shell, NUMAR, NMR+, and Saudi Aramco; in international and domestic assignments. He has a BS degree in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, USA, and a PhD degree in geophysics from the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, USA. Ridvan has many publications and 24 US patents, has taught industrial courses, served as a Distinguished Lecturer for SPE and SPWLA.

  • [Tentative] 2021-2022 3rd Distinguished Lecture Program

    Thursday, May 19, 2022, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM JP
    What You Need to Know About Fracture Driven Interactions Michael F. Rainbolt (Petroleum Training Institute Nigeria) Abstract: Fracture driven interactions are well to well communication events that operators of horizontal shale play wells frequently encounter. Properly monitored and diagnosed, their impact on offsettng wells can be minimized with innovation and sound engineering practices. Fluid migration events between horizontal wells during fracture stimulation operations is a problem for many operators. Exacerbating factors such as decreased well spacing, greater proppant intensity and tighter cluster spacing are amplifying the problem. Formerly referred to as “frac hits”, these communication events are now called “fracture driven interactions” (FDIs). There are several aspects to FDIs such as timing, magnitude, slope intensity, duration and fracture orientation. All of these will be covered in the presentation. The industry is trying to cope with the detrimental effects that FDIs can cause such as loss of production in existing wells and sub-economic initial rates of the new wells. Operators have begun to utilize techniques such as extreme limited entry perforating and various water loading strategies, up to and including refracturing existing wells to mitigate FDIs. The root causes of fracture driven interactions will be presented along with a rigorous description of FDI characteristics. case studies from various shale plays will be shown and discussed. One of the studies is a mitigation trial exploring the effectiveness of preloading versus continuous injection. FDI data collection best practices and using FDI data in the moment to make changes on-the-fly will be shown. FDI myths such as creating barriers by leaving wells shut-in after fracture stimulating will exposed and debunked. Illustrations and examples gathered from actual completion operations will be shown and explained in detail. The audience will come away with a good understanding of what fracture driven interactions are and how to what can be done to respond to them. Biography: Mike is a registered professional engineer and recently, senior technical advisor with Abra Controls Corporation in Houston, Tx. Mike earned a BS degree in Civil Engineering from Texas A&M University in 1978. Mike has worked as a Production Engineer, a Drilling Engineer and for the past 24 years as a Completions Engineer. Mike has international drilling and completions experience. Rainbolt has co-authored multiple SPE papers with the last four of them dealing specifically with Fracture Driven Interactions. Mike’s latest writing, “Monitoring Primary and Existing Wells During Infill Well Fracturing”, was published in the April, 2019 special Issue of the Hydraulic Fracturing Journal. Mike was featured in an SPE Podcast on fracture driven interactions in Feburary of 2020 .