How to Improve Reservoir Management with Up-to-Date Data Analysis

Many operators looking to improve reservoir management carefully analyze the ever-increasing volumes of seismic and borehole data that characterize subsurface conditions. Data generated throughout the life of the reservoir—initial seismic surveys, simulations, well plans, completions, and production data—can provide a digital representation of the evolving reservoir. Operators able to exploit the full potential of these data are well-positioned to improve reservoir management.

The CoViz 4D Data Registry serves as a master catalog of all data types, each maintained by discipline-specific geo-professionals and shared across the reservoir management team. Data used with permission of owner.

The Challenges of Accessing Up-to-Date Data

For many teams, these multi-disciplinary data sit isolated on desktops or servers, accessible by and meaningful to only the geologists, geophysicists, and engineers who use discipline-specific software such as Petrel, Landmark, and Openworks. Furthermore, many of these datasets have proprietary formats that prevent the data from easily being shared with other members of the reservoir management team.

Reservoir management can significantly be improved by eliminating the barriers to data sharing and collaboration. By integrating a wide range of geologic, seismic, simulation, well, and production data—and visualizing the data in 3D and 4D—reservoir management teams can explore and analyze evolving reservoir conditions in near-real-time.

Explore and Analyze Evolving Reservoir Conditions with CoViz 4D

CoViz 4D, an integrated software solution, provides a quantitative visual environment for reservoir management and 4D seismic analysis. Here, we explore five of its unique capabilities that can be used to improve reservoir management.

1. Share Up-to-Date Data via a Data Registry

The challenge of sharing data among the different disciplines is solved with the CoViz 4D Data Registry. The Data Registry allows individual team members to link vetted data and models that they have created into a team-wide accessible Data Registry. Other team members can then easily access these data for use in their analysis.

The Data Registry also organizes data by type, allowing seismic volumes to be grouped—simulations in one category and well logs in another. CoViz 4D’s data registry module also reduces the amount of time it takes to search for data, allowing petroleum professionals to focus more time and resources on improving reservoir management.

2. Translate Data Formats for Visualization and Analysis

With relevant data located and cataloged, any member of the reservoir management team can easily access data provided by others—reservoir simulation models from reservoir engineers, seismic models from geophysicists, wellbore data from drilling engineers—and incorporate those data into their analysis. CoViz 4D automatically translates the various datasets into a compatible format for visualization and analysis. With access to a wide range of discipline-specific data via the Data Registry members of the reservoir management can apply CoViz 4D capabilities to:

  • Explore digital representations of fault gaps, reverse faults, and fault-wedge contours.
  • Create geologic models to estimate the distribution and amount of hydrocarbon volumes.
  • Explore seismic and cellular structures to plan optimized well paths.
  • Model fluid contacts, diapirs, salt domes, and complexly faulted structures to gain a detailed understanding of factors affecting reservoir performance.
  • Visually filter out surrounding data to focus on specific geologic areas of interest.
  • Integrate hydraulic fracturing data with subsurface geological, petrophysical, and reservoir data to present the microseismic data in true geologic context.

These examples represent only a small fraction of the nearly limitless types of analyses that can be conducted by reservoir management teams via CoViz 4D, without the need to know where data is stored, or how to run the original software that generated the data. Every member of the team can visualize their data in context of other meaningful reservoir data, leading to faster, better decisions regarding reservoir management.

3. Provide Powerful Analytic Tools to Explore, Query, Filter

Additional insight can be extracted from the wealth of subsurface data with the aid of powerful analytic tools and algorithms. CoViz 4D offers a wide range of integrated, quantitative analysis and statistical functions for comparison of diverse datasets, and supports quick run times, even for very large reservoir models. A small sampling of the capabilities include:

  • statistical methods for computing grid nodes using 2D or 3D data
  • depth-to-time and time-to-depth conversions
  • Batzle-Wang or user-provided custom fluid calculations
  • Krief or polynomial options for expression of dry moduli
  • time-shift calculations using a spatially varied R-factor approach
  • calculations for overburden displacement, strain, stress, and seismic time-shifts due to thickness changes
  • Geostatistics, including kriging algorithms—simple, ordinary, non-stationary, universal, kriging with external drift, and collocated cokriging
  • seismic history matching workflows employing time-step arithmetic operations, property averages, and back-interpolations of property values between spatially and temporally overlapping data

CoViz 4D also provides a Python Developer’s Toolkit that supports most CoViz 4D visualization and analysis functions in a batch environment, allowing petroleum professionals to create custom scripts for rapid, optimized analyses.

4. Automatically Incorporate New Data As They Are Generated

Throughout the reservoir lifecycle, updates to existing data and additional volumes of data that characterize subsurface conditions are generated. New seismic surveys, well events, fluid production rates, and numerous other datasets record changes in the reservoir. Up-to-date data reveal evolving subsurface conditions that must be taken into account for any pending decisions.

By way of the CoViz 4D Data Registry, as team members update their datasets (or add new datasets) they become immediately available to other members of the team. Automatic data updates ensure that reservoir management teams use data that reflect current subsurface conditions.

5. Analyze Temporal Data for Greater Understanding

CoViz 4D enables quantitative analysis of temporal seismic data and attributes to help reservoir management teams understand a reservoir’s evolution. Temporal seismic and simulation data can be easily compared to provide a detailed understanding of the seismic response over time. Using CoViz 4D time-step algorithmic operations and other visualization tools teams can:

  • View and analyze a range of different properties or time-steps based on a single reservoir simulation run.
  • Review fault transmissibility across multiple realizations with the consequent changes in reservoir initial conditions fed back to the simulator.
  • Study the change in gas saturation between baseline and subsequent monitor surveys to evaluate the effect of injection wells on production volumes.
  • Conduct spatiotemporal comparisons between fluid injection volumes and movement in the seismic signature.

Temporal analysis of seismic data combined with relevant treatment and production data brings a greater understanding of reservoir performance to all members of the management team to facilitate better development decisions.

Data Analysis Is Key to Improved Reservoir Management

Data has become one of the most valuable resources to enable reservoir management teams to maximize return on investment. Data attain their greatest value when combined with all other relevant subsurface data to create a detailed picture of evolving reservoir conditions.

There is no better solution to help management teams maximize the value of their data throughout all phases of a reservoir’s lifecycle than CoViz 4D. It provides a new methodology to complete an evolutionary asset analysis more efficiently than traditional techniques.

Data integration, visualization, and analysis capabilities benefit every team member through immediate access to up-to-date data that present reservoir conditions in context. Rapid, integrated, quantitative analysis and comparison of diverse datasets facilitate a mutual understanding of reservoir performance, allowing geologists, geophysicists, and engineers to make well-reasoned decisions to improve reservoir management.

Well Planning for New Oilfields

Detailed understanding of surface environs and subsurface conditions facilitates optimum well planning. For new fields, CoViz 4D combines LIDAR images and GIS details allowing well planners to determine infrastructure placement and plan surface operations logistics. Subsurface analysis employing user-specified path parameters, proximity monitoring of faults and horizons, collision-risk analysis, and trajectory planning give well planners an accurate 3D visualization of the intended wellpath.

Well Planning for Established Oilfields

WellArchitect, a companion product to CoViz 4D, helps well planners navigate the subsurface complexity of mature oilfields. Calculation and visualization of wellpaths and intersections use traveling cylinder diagrams to compare plans to actuals and reduce collision risks. Collision-avoidance symbols indicate available space between proposed wellpaths and nearby wells.

Well planners easily explore potential sidetrack options from existing wells or visualize horizontal wells within a target interval for complex wellbore networks. As additional data or parameters are acquired they are automatically incorporated into the planning visualizations to provide the most current and accurate visualization of subsurface conditions.

Well Drilling Incorporates Real-Time Data

Visualizing MWD data such as max torque, weight on bit, gamma ray and rate of penetration, along with a cross section of the planned wellpath through the geologic model with a seismic backdrop in a geolocated context can significantly improve success in drilling.

Advanced 3D visualization allows engineers to translate drilling plans into action. CoViz 4D incorporates wellbore data such as toolface measurements, gamma ray and rate of penetration, temperature, vibration shock, and borehole pressure into the 3D model to show wellbore location in a geolocated context.

Real-time analysis of wellbore progress enables engineers to optimize their drilling strategies ⁄ techniques and avoid potential problems or hazards such as over-pressurized zones that can lead to gas kicks. Automated clearance calculations ahead-of-the-bit use industry-standard tool models and user-tailored anti-collision rules to help engineers anticipate and accommodate the need for wellbore deviations.

Managing the drilling process with the aid of advanced 3D visualization gives engineers accurate, detailed insight into the current drilling conditions to facilitate analysis that ensures wellpaths reach their intended targets in a cost-efficient and safe manner.

Reservoir Monitoring and Production Optimization

Temporal data is critical to understanding reservoir performance throughout its life. CoViz 4D enables asset teams to collaboratively analyze time-variant data such as seismic surveys, production tests, reservoir simulations, fluid production, well events, and microseismic data.

Analyses of these integrated datasets deliver critical insight regarding historical and current production status to help identify opportunities for improved reservoir production.

Reservoir simulation, well events, logs, fluid production, injection data, pressure data, and decline curves track the evolution of fluid movement and saturations within a reservoir. Regular analysis of changing reservoir conditions also alerts teams to displacement, strain, stress, and seismic time-shifts in the overburden that potentially impact reservoir performance. Proactive mitigation can then prevent formation damage that impairs the ability to economically extract recoverable hydrocarbons.

CoViz 4D provides powerful analytic and visualization capabilities (statistics, time-step arithmetic operations, property averages and back-interpolations, cross-plotting) for ongoing analysis of reservoir characteristics and their impact on performance.

Seismic History Matching and Simulation Model Updates

4D seismic integrated with other discipline-specific data streams in a streamlined workflow fosters collaborative decision making. CoViz 4D offers quantitative and qualitative tools to enable efficiency and accuracy in results.

CoViz 4D enables seismic history matching via cross-correlation of time-sequenced seismic data with reservoir models. A comprehensive set of analytic tools, flexible workflows, and powerful 4D visualization capabilities allow geoscientists and engineers to more accurately track fluid migration within a reservoir and identify under- or over-produced locations.

CoViz 4D supports an iterative seismic history matching process. Qualitative and quantitative comparisons of synthetic volumes with field-measured seismic and reservoir simulation provide an efficient feedback loop. Asset teams can compare models, identifying the best matches, and update the simulations to minimize discrepancies.

Microseismic Event Analysis

This CoViz4D image depicts 4D temporal microseismic and fracture activity in the context of a reservoir.

CoViz 4D transforms microseismic event data captured during hydraulic fracturing into 3D models that can be animated through time as additional event data are acquired. This integrated software solution also accurately displays event location, magnitude, stage, and focal mechanisms. Additional critical subsurface data such as acoustic logs, stratigraphy, and seismic reflections, treatment and observation well trajectories, perforations, and receiver locations can also be incorporated into the analysis. Asset teams can develop statistical plots of quantitative datasets and link them with the visualized models.

Relevant fracturing data visualized in conjunction with other relevant subsurface information present microseismic data in their true geologic context, providing a much better understanding of complex reservoir conditions and enabling asset teams to develop optimum recovery strategies.

Identify Bypassed Reserves

Subsurface complexity of mature fields requires careful analysis in planning recovery strategies. CoViz 4D gives well planners, drilling engineers, and production engineers the ability to understand an oilfield in historic detail, determine characteristics of bypassed reserves, identify existing wellbores, and determine the best recovery methods.

For example, for a thermal recovery approach, CoViz 4D can determine the best wellbores for steam injection, closely monitor temperature and pressure, and update the geologic model as production data are acquired to monitor steam chest effectiveness.


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CoViz 4D a data visualization analytics software from Dynamic Graphics, Inc.., gives oil and gas professionals the ability to easily access and combine all relevant data associated with petroleum assets. Powerful visualization capabilities enable you to explore data relationships, calculate and show inferred data, and analyze how data changes over time, allowing your team to confidently make decisions on the field that positively impact profit and reduce operational risk. To learn more about CoViz 4D, contact our team.

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