Devex 2015 Key Technical Papers

New for DEVEX 2015: Key Technical Papers

At DEVEX this year the Technical Sessions will be underpinned by the addition of Key Technical Papers which have been invited by the DEVEX 2015 Technical Committee in place of traditional Keynote Speakers. They will focus on a range of key case studies and topics relevant to current activity in the North Sea and further afield at this time. These papers will be allocated 40 minutes – double the length of standard presentations at the event, which will allow for a more detailed and in-depth presentation.

Key Technical Papers confirmed to date are:

Developing Culzean: The Subsurface Story of a Major uHPHT Development Claus G. Bjerregaard, Maersk Oil

Discovered in 2008, Culzean is one of the largest current developments on the UKCS. This presentation will tell the story of the subsurface development of Culzean’s uHPHT reservoir, examining the key risks and challenges in developing a resource with the potential to meet 5% of UK gas demand by 2020/21.

An Insight into Hydrocarbon Extraction from Shale: Definitely not a Geoscientist’s Bore nor an Engineer’s Dream Dr. Iain Bartholomew, Independent

This talk will draw mainly upon experience from the North American shale basins. There are now copious amounts of well and seismic data available which clearly demonstrate that shale is highly variable in its ability to produce hydrocarbons. Case histories will be used in order to illustrate this and the requirement for careful subsurface analysis and understanding before large scale developments should be committed to. Some thoughts will also be presented on the potential of the UK onshore shale development from a mainly subsurface perspective.

Cost Pressures in the North Sea Erin Moffat, Wood Mackenzie

From 2009 to 2014, there was a major increase in upstream activity and development investment in the North Sea. This led to a tight supply chain, cost inflation, project delays and the erosion of project returns. As a result, operators, regulators and shareholders became increasingly focused on project execution performance. On top of this, the drop in oil price has put pressure on near term cash flows, and brings a new perspective on capital discipline. Wood Mackenzie’s paper explores these themes, and what it could mean for the future of the UKCS.

Schiehallion EOR: New boat, new opportunities Jamie Collins, BP

Quad204 redevelopment of the Schiehallion and Loyal fields gives the opportunity to pursue an EOR scheme to enhance recovery. Developed under water flood, the fields have a typical oil of viscosity of 3.5cp, resulting in poor sweep efficiency of the migrating flood front due to inter-fingering of the water into the oil. Polymerising the injected sea water prior to injection stabilises the flood front and provides improved sweep efficiency. Various mechanistic and fine scale models were built to demonstrate the potential value of the polymer EOR scheme, with model data suggesting an increase in RF of 3.5% attributed to polymer injection.


The giant Forties oil field is celebrating its 40th year of production in 2015. Despite its maturity, Forties ranked as the second highest oil-producing field in the UKCS in 2013. This remarkable achievement is a result of a sustained redevelopment program that was initiated in 2003. This program successfully arrested the historical production decline, established a late-life production plateau, and is prolonging the field’s life. This talk will go through key drivers of the redevelopment with an emphasis on the contribution from reservoir geophysics.