Meeting Energy Demand
Meeting Energy Demand
Maximising our production
Naturally, bringing new projects on stream is an important means of ensuring the growth of our production. But at the same time, we are deploying various processes designed to increase the output and extend the producing life of our oil and gas fields.
Launching New Projects
We have a broad portfolio of projects that are gradually being brought on stream. Six major projects were kicked off in 2010 and another dozen will be by 2012.
Optimizing Production and Extending Field Life
Current extraction techniques allow us to recover around one-third of the oil contained in a field. This percentage is known as the recovery rate. Each extra percentage point means that global consumption can be met for another two years, at the current rate.
Enhancing Oil Recovery
When production from an oil field declines, various factors make continued output more difficult; pressure and flow rates decrease and the oil is more viscous.
The Dalia FPSO (Floating Production, Storage and Offloading)
vessel on the Dalia oilfield offshore Angola.
Our technical teams use various techniques to offset these problems:
- Fluids or gas are injected in the reservoir to create a piston effect that “pushes” the oil to the well. When technically feasible, we inject water or associated gas into the reservoirs.
- Polymers or surfactants are injected to make the oil less viscous. It then flows better and is easier to pump.
Since 2009 and following five years of research, our enhanced oil recovery (EOR) specialists have been conducting the first-ever tests of deep offshore polymer injection, in the Dalia reservoirs in Angola. Extending the use of this chemical process to the entire field, planned for 2014, is expected to boost reserves recovery by about 5% over 20 years.
Pinpointing Residual Reserves
The geological formations that contain oil or natural gas are not uniform. Variations in permeability result in the hydrocarbons migrating differently from one location to another. As a result, wells cannot drain all the fluids and leave untapped areas known as residual reserves.
To identify them, we use sophisticated techniques combining seismic imaging and production modeling to reconstruct fluid migration in the reservoirs.
Developing Satellite Reservoirs
In some cases, efforts to optimize production include looking for satellite reservoirs located near existing production areas. Bringing them on stream improves the overall economics of the main field development.