A Comparative Study of Gas Lift and Electrical Submersible Pump (ESP) for Production Optimization.

West Sobomabo Gorden, E.O Ehirim, K.K. Dagde


One of the key aspect of exploration and production (E&P) industry is the production Of hydrocarbon from underground reservoirs to the surface production and storage facilities via the wellbore. When a well is drilled, the reservoir fluid flows naturally with the primary energy of the reservoir but when it becomes necessary that oil fails to flow naturally, then an artificial lift system is installed to aid the flow by lowering the hydrostatic pressure inside the production tubing. This study presents a comparative study of gas lift and electrical submersible pump (ESP) for production optimization of UFET_3 well to select the best option for the field. PROSPER software was used to build a natural flowing case, gas lift and ESP to simulate different scenarios. The result obtained showed that the ESP system has a production rate of 4645.9 STB/day higher than the natural flowing case, gas lift has 785.7 STB/day higher than natural flowing case. In addition, ESP has a production rate of 3860.2 STB/day higher than gas lift. Considering economy, ESP generated the highest gross profit ($4.882B) a difference of $1.42M & $1.8M from gas lift and natural flowing case respectively. But considering other factors like water cut and replacement of failed pumps, gas lift system was preferred for proper production optimization of the field. However, gas lift was chosen for UFET_3 well based on the availability of readily compressed gas, higher life time expectance and lower operational cost as compared with the ESP which had the highest production potential.

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