An operator had a one-year-old, 44-stage (combo frac sleeve and a plug-and-perf fractured) sub-hydrostatic horizontal well, with 9377-ft. of perforations (see Figure 1).
After a year of production, scale build-up disabled several downhole pumps. In order to replace the pumps, the tubing had to be removed from the wellbore. With the tubing pulled from the wellbore, the operator planned to re-enter the well to mill-out scale and the leftover frac hardware. During similar workovers, in adjacent sub-hydrostatic wells, the workover process typically took two weeks and only retrieved 1-2 m3 of scale. In an effort to safely optimize the workover process, the operator required circulation prior to the milling operation.
The operator requested Impact Fluid Solutions to develop a program and utilize the MaxVert diverter system. The operator desired flow through the fractures temporarily prevented. MaxVert completely dissolves to a clear non-damaging fluid, with time and temperature and can temporarily isolate fractures.
In two stages with a total volume of 6700 lb, MaxVert returned circulation to the wellbore. The pump pressure increase in Figure 2 (from 115-145 minutes) demonstrates MaxVert sealing open fractures. The slight increase in the pressure prior to 115 minutes was simply due to friction. In stage two (Figure 3) a sufficient number of the remaining open fractures were plugged to achieve the pre-job target pressure of 3500 psi.
The mill-out time was reduced by 70%, and circulation was maintained throughout the entire milling operation. During the milling process, the pump rate in was 5 bbl/min and the return rate never fell below 4.5 bbl/min. The small amount of scale typically returned to the surface (1-2 m3) was replaced with six, 3 m3 mounds. Previously unobserved frac parts were also returned to the surface. A substantial increase in production was measured, further enhancing the economics of the MaxVert solution. This increase in production was attributed to the prevention of formation damage from the milled-up scale and frac parts. MaxVert protected the formation by temporarily isolating the fractures from the wellbore.
A number of additional wells were treated with MaxVert in the same field, all with positive results.