American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 104

SpecialReport: Artificial Lift Technology

Variable Speed Drives Coming Of Age
By Ted Wilke BIRMINGHAM, AL.–Technological innovation has tremendously impacted our ability to source and access hydrocarbons under a wide range of physical conditions. During the past decade, however, many of the most important technological advances have entered the picture after the well is sunk and drilling rigs have moved on. Artificial lift systems have existed as long as the industry, but for decades their basic design remained unchanged, from the ubiquitous beam pump to the electric submersible pump (ESP) and the progressing cavity (PC) pump. The past decade’s dramatic development is a newfound ability to automate and control the pump, gather and respond to a well’s production data, and to trend data over time. This narrowly defines production parameters to ensure maximum production at the lowest possible cost for a single well or across an entire field. When combined with automation application expertise, technology completely changes a well’s pumping efficiency, increasing productivity while dramatically lowering production costs. On Or Off In the beginning, all artificial lift systems used simple across-the-line starters and ran at set speeds determined by the FIGURE 1 Nominal Full-Load Efficiency
100

motor and gearing. The system was on or off, with no ability to adjust motor speed for changing well conditions without mechanical changes and associated costs and downtime. Controlling a well’s flow required mechanical controls. When a well hit pump-off conditions, an operator’s only option was to stop the motor and wait. Unfortunately, both halting and restarting a well costs valuable time, increases the possibility of stuck pumps, and risks other mechanical breakage and production drops. Controlling pumps with variable speed drives offered an obvious advancement; after all, the industrial world had decades of experience using variable speed drives for similar applications. Instead of adjusting the hydrocarbon flow through mechanical controls, it became possible to increase or decrease flow according to motor speed control. Unfortunately, the first several generations of variable speed drives designed for the oil and gas industry earned the entire technology a reputation akin to that of a snake-oil-salesman. Not all drives are built equally, of course, and performance in an industrial setting guarantees little in harsh oil field conditions. Since wells are not typically located for convenience, they often can be found in some of the world’s most remote and inhospitable corners. They are fed by unreliable power grids and are subjected to

extremes of heat, cold and all manner of unpredictable storms. To complicate matters, early providers had not developed the necessary automation expertise to tailor a complete system that would endure such demands. Well operators demanded reliability and the automation industry struggled to respond. Engineered Solutions All that has changed. State-of-the-art variable speed drives now are engineered solutions specifically designed to perform under the most challenging conditions. They are part of an overall system, such as those that will work on traditional beam, ESP, PC and injection pumps. Nevertheless, the drive accounts for only one component of the solution. Automation application expertise has grown to exponentially improve efficiency throughout an entire control system. The latest variable speed drives provide better than 100 percent torque through a motor’s entire range of speed, producing a greater range of fluid volumes. Moreover, the system software gradually learns to match motor speed to the well’s optimum production rate, reducing or eliminating the need to shut down the pump. Should the well hit pump-off conditions, controls now slow the motor without stopping it, saving valuable production time and costs. Reducing pump start and stop cycles also reduces gearbox and belt failure, and eases transient electrical system stress. Advanced automated systems offer 3 percent line reactors and surge protection to withstand energy spikes and surges, while also being outfitted for conditions ranging from the deep desert to Arctic cold. Properly engineered drives have uptimes greater than 99.9 percent. Contemporary drives also trim energy costs, often by significant amounts when compared with traditional fixed-speed drives. On beam pumps–which traditionally use low efficiency National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) D oil field motors–it is possible for variable speed drive operators to opt for high efficiency NEMA B motors and reduce power consumption 5-10 percent (Figure 1). Variable speed drives also reduce peak power demand and reduce inrush currents at startup, where seven-12 times the normal load may be required to start the motor and create enough torque to move the load (Figure 2).

6 Pole: Enclosed Motors

96

92

88

84

NEMA B NEMA D

80 10 20 30 40 50 60 75 100 Motor Horsepower 125 150

104 THE AMERICAN OIL & GAS REPORTER



American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012

American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012
Contents
Reports
Calendar
Oil & Gas Counts
State Legislative
Industry Digest
Natural Gas NSPS Affects a Variety of Equipment
Federal Legislation
SPCC
EPA
Keystone XL
Tech Connections
Washington Watch
Anadarko Finds World-Class Reservoirs in Deepwater Mozambique
Variety of Projects Have Permian Basin Hopping
Infrastructure Bottlenecks Easing in Permian Region
Completion Design Optimizes Yeso-San Andres Oil Wells
Cover Story
Beaver Creek CO2 Flood Boosts Madison Production
Study Evaluates Low-Salinity Waterfloods
Variable Speed Drives Coming of Age
Activity Spurring Artificial Lift Innovations
Project Shows STMZ’s Viability for Lower Tertiary Completions
ICDs, Modeling Improve Horizontal Shelf Well Completion
Intelligent Gas Lift Maximizes Production, Recovery
KOGA
CIPA
TOGA
TAEP
Frac Rules
Marcellus Regs
Conventions
The American Well Servicing Directory, Summer 2012
Industry Focus
Classified Advertising
Advertisers Index
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Cover2
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Contents
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Reports
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 5
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 6
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 7
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Calendar
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 9
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 10
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 11
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 12
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 13
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Oil & Gas Counts
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 15
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Industry Digest
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 17
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 18
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 19
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 20
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 21
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 22
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 23
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Natural Gas NSPS Affects a Variety of Equipment
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 25
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 26
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 27
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Federal Legislation
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 29
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 30
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 31
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - SPCC
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 33
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Keystone XL
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 35
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 36
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Tech Connections
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 38
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Washington Watch
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Anadarko Finds World-Class Reservoirs in Deepwater Mozambique
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 41
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 42
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 43
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 44
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 45
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 46
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 47
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 48
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 49
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Variety of Projects Have Permian Basin Hopping
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 51
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 52
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 53
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 54
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 55
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American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 60
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 61
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 62
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 63
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Infrastructure Bottlenecks Easing in Permian Region
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 65
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 66
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 67
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 68
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 69
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 70
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 71
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Completion Design Optimizes Yeso-San Andres Oil Wells
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 73
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 74
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 75
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 76
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 77
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 78
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 79
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 80
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 81
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Cover Story
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 83
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 84
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 85
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 86
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 87
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 88
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 89
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 90
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 91
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Beaver Creek CO2 Flood Boosts Madison Production
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 93
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 94
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 95
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 96
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 97
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 98
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 99
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Study Evaluates Low-Salinity Waterfloods
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 101
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 102
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 103
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Variable Speed Drives Coming of Age
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 105
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 106
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 107
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Activity Spurring Artificial Lift Innovations
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 109
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 110
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 111
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 112
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 113
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 114
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 115
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 116
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 117
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Project Shows STMZ’s Viability for Lower Tertiary Completions
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 119
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 120
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 121
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 122
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 123
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 124
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 125
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 126
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 127
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 128
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 129
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 130
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - ICDs, Modeling Improve Horizontal Shelf Well Completion
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 132
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 133
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 134
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 135
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 136
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 137
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 138
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 139
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 140
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Intelligent Gas Lift Maximizes Production, Recovery
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 142
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 143
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 144
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 145
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 146
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 147
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 148
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - KOGA
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 150
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 151
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - CIPA
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 153
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 154
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 155
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - TOGA
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 157
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 158
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 159
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 160
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 161
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 162
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 163
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - TAEP
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 165
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 166
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 167
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 168
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 169
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 170
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Frac Rules
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Marcellus Regs
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 173
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Conventions
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - The American Well Servicing Directory, Summer 2012
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 176
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 177
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 178
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 179
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 180
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American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 199
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 200
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 201
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 202
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Industry Focus
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 204
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 205
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 206
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 207
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - 208
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Classified Advertising
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Advertisers Index
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Cover3
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2012 - Cover4
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