RF XL Commercial Pilot Test
April 28, 2022
Acceleware has successfully injected power into the transmission lines for thirty consecutive days, and the Pilot commenced producing oil on April 6, 2022, at rates consistent with the gradual ramp up of heating.
Construction of Acceleware’s commercial scale RF XL pilot was started in January, 2021. The pilot will validate Acceleware’s all-electric RF XL clean heating technology at Broadview Energy’s Marwayne asset, which is located in the Alberta oilsands designated area. Though the pilot test is greenfield, RF XL can also be adopted into brownfield projects, leveraging existing processing infrastructure to increase throughput volumes without the expansion of capital intensive water treatment and steam generation equipment.
The commercial scale pilot is intended to demonstrate RF XL’s heating capabilities, alongside immediate and sustainable environmental, economic and social benefits. These include ~40% operating and capital cost reductions, no external water use requirements, near-zero GHG emissions through direct or indirect use of renewable power, a significant reduction in surface disturbance and no requirements for the addition of solvents.
How a software company is microwaving Alberta's oilsands
The Marwayne asset is currently held by private player, Broadview Energy, and is located ~50km Northwest of oilfield service hub, Lloydminster, within the Alberta Energy Regulator’s designated oil sands area. As operator of the pilot, Acceleware will be targeting the GP (General Petroleum) heavy oil zone within the Mannville Group by way of a farm-in agreement with Broadview Energy. The GP zone at Marwayne is analogous to most other heavy oil fields in Alberta and Saskatchewan (similar depth, geology, and reservoir characteristics) and bears many similarities to global heavy oil deposits such as those in California, Latin America, and the Middle East.
Pan Canadian initially tested slant well drilling at this location, with 64 wells drilled from 4 pads in the 1990s. Production reached over 2,000 bopd via CHOPS (Cold Heavy Oil Production with Sand) before shutting-in as a result of the 1999 oil price crash. Pan Canadian’s prior CHOPS activity provides Acceleware a high degree of geological delineation and reservoir characterization, allowing for optimization of well placement and operational strategies.
Benefits attributed to the Marwayne asset include all weather access, proximity to Lloydminster, access to grid power, oil terminals, and produced water disposal facilities.
objectives / goals
The objective of Acceleware’s Marwayne Commercial Pilot is to demonstrate the effectiveness of RF XL’s clean heating technology in a real-life heavy oil reservoir. As described in the Technology section of this website, the pilot will involve drilling one multilateral RF XL heating well and one production well into the GP heavy oil target zone. While the planned lateral length of the heating and production wells is 800m at the Marwayne Commercial Pilot, Acceleware has simulated effective heating for horizontal wells with lateral lengths ranging from 500m to 2000m.
With all pre-testing and design work complete, the RF XL converter at the surface of the Marwayne pilot site will deliver up to 2MW of power through the multilateral RF XL heating well and into the GP heavy oil target zone. Both the heating well and producer well will be equipped with downhole instrumentation allowing for the collection and analysis of real time pressure and temperature data along the lateral sections of the wells. The producer well will be completed with a high temperature PCP (progressive cavity pump) for the production and measurement of heavy oil that has been mobilized from the RF XL clean heating process.
3D Model of Marwayne Pilot Facility, courtesy of Scovan Engineering
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Find out more about Broadview Energy at broadviewenergy.ca
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Find out more about Karma Machining & Manufacturing Ltd. at karmamfg.ca
Precise Downhole Solutions
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Find out more about Precise Downhole Solutions Ltd. at precisedhs.com
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