A consortium of three leading global oil and gas companies engaged the GE Oil & Gas team to provide artificial lift technology for a project in central Chad. The field consists of approximately 975 wells, about 750 of which are active today. These wells can produce almost 1,000,000 barrels of fluid per day. Artificial lift was required to produce the wells at this site and in May 2005, GE’s ESP technology as chosen for this field.
The wells in the basin presented a number of challenges, and due to the characteristics of the field—including remote well sites, unconsolidated formation sand, severe emulsions, and flow impairment due to fines migration—the production teams saw failures at multiple wells. In fact, three years after production began, nine ESPs per month (out of a total of 242) were experiencing failures. With a performance guarantee in place, both the operator and GE were motivated to identify the causes of failures and to increase reliability and performance of artificial lift systems, well operation, and operating conditions.