At the time that The Oil and Gas Technology Centre in Aberdeen became active our ideas were a good fit with their goals to maximise reserves recovery from the UKCS, support industry in NE Scotland and boost export opportunities for the UK. With the support of Total E&P Denmark and Premier Oil as project partners we continued the development journey of Empirica. We completed the project and continued working with TEPDK and Premier (now Harbour Energy), launching Empirica’s risk modelling capability in 2021.
Empirica brings major benefits. These include maximised production, reduced costs, and most importantly improved safety and environmental protection performance.
Production is the most straightforward to evaluate. In our proposal to OGTC we identified benefits for the UKCS each year:
- $49 million through avoiding shutting in wells for well failure risk assessments
- $292 million with reduced well shut-in time with longer, risk based, repair response times
- £155 million by improved well repair and workover planning
These numbers were based on experience gained with our consultancy customers at the time of our proposal, extrapolated for UKCS well numbers, production rates and operating practices.
After starting the project with OGTC, TEPDK told us about the production savings they were achieving with their prototype Empirica model. They estimated it is equivalent to c.$50 million per year of safeguarded production from reduced risk assessment shut-in time alone (you can read the full story in SPE-200744). This is from a much smaller well stock than the UKCS, and production volumes an order of magnitude lower than the UKCS. Our work with TEPDK indicates the production value estimate could be very conservative.
Stuart Wheaton, Premier Oil Chief Technology Officer, said:
We are delighted to support the development of Empirica as we believe it will provide a game changing analytical approach to ensure integrity risk is identified accurately and quickly, allowing for better decision making and minimising any unnecessary associated production loss.