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The Effect of Perforating

Conditions on Well Perfonnance

Harry O. McLeod Jr.. SPE. Conoco Inc'

The productivity of a perforated gas well is affected These general terms. sand Dq. are evaluated by tran-
strongly by non-Darcy or turbulent flow through the sient pressure testing. or they can be determined by
compacted zone around each perforation. The turbulence multirate flow tests. They provide a measure of total ad-
coefficient depends on the permeability of this com- ditional pressure drop caused by wellbore damage and
pacted zone. This pemleability. a function of perforation turbulent flow. In evaluating well completions or pro-
condition. can be used with perforation dimensions to posing a certain way of perforating. we need a more
predict gas well performance. specific relationship to well bore geometry and condition.
By analyzing the effect of perforations on well flow
Introduction from experimental parameters from laboratory perfora-
Recent work by Jones ('( al. I and Mach ef al. 2 describes tion tests. 3 one can show the dominating influence of
pressure drop in turbulent flow through gravel-packed real perforations on wellbore pressure drops in a high-
perforations. No method ha~ been presented yet to permeability formation. These same procedures also can
describe similarly turbulent /low in perforated wells that be used for low-permeability formations; however. the
are not gravel packed. Thi~ paper presents an approach perforation effect is not as striking as in a high-permea-
to this problem. It can be u~ed to analyze producing gas bility formation.
wells. or it can be combined with flowing well analysis 2 Fig. I shows a simple schematic of a perforation con-
to calculate the perforJtion~ needed to complete a gas nected to the wellbore. Around each perforation made in
well in a consolidated or competent formation. rock there exists a compacted zone with a thickness of
about 0.5 in. (1.25 cm) ..,.) The permeability of this
The General Radial Gas Flow Equation compacted zone will vary from 10 to 25 % of the
Gas flow into a perforated ",ell can be described by the permeability of the rock just before perforating. The
well-known equation compaction takes place when the hole is created by the
impact of the disintegrated shaped charge metal liner.
The permeability can be reduced further by the presence
of dirty perforating fluids or drilling mud. particularly
when pressure forces fluid into the perforation. For a
perforated well. the factor D is defined as follows .
. [I n ( 0 .4 72 1', ir" ) +.1+ Dq ]. ....... (I )

D-~.22(10) -1)( i3,,1'
0 0
)(kRh) ....... (2)
The skin factor. s. accounts for viscous flow through the n-L"rl' !l
damaged zone around the wellbore. including the effects
of perforations. The term Dq accounts for the extra This equation is developed in Appendix A along with the
pressure drop as a result of turbulent gas flow around the equation defining i3"I"
wellbore. Other terms are defined in the Nomenclature.
Copy"ghl 1983 Soclely of Pelroleum Engineers of AI ME

Klotz et al. 3 pointed out that the permeability of the
compacted zone is less than the wel1bore permeability,
which has been reduced by drilling fluid and cement
filtrates. For example, if the wellbore permeability is
40% of the original reservoir permeability, the
permeability of the compacted zone may be 10% of th.e
wellbore permeability, or 4 % of the reservOir
An example of calculating gas well drawdown is
presented in Appendix B and demonstrates the applica-
tion of these equations and concepts.

Alternate Form of the General

Radial Gas Flow Equation
When gas pressure exceeds 4,000 psia (27 600 kPa), the
following equation should be used since BJJ. is nearly
constant above 4,000 psia (27 600 kPa). Below 4,000
psia (27 600 kPa), the multiple JJ.Z is more nearly con-
stant, and Eq. I is preferred. Eq. I is satisfactory for
high pressure if the pressure drawdown is less than 1,000
psi (6895 kPa).

_ 141.2qJJ.B g [ ]
PR-P"f= In(0.472r e lr".)+s+Dq ,
kRh .
. . . . . . . . . . . (7)


q = gas flow rate, MscflD (std m 3 Id),

Fig. 1-Flow into a perforation. B g = reservoir volume factor, res bbl/Mscf
(res m 3 /std m 3), and

........................ (S)
The effective laminar skin factor, s, can be expressed P
as a sum of independent skin factors resulting from per- The terms sand D are the same as in Eq. I.
foration geometry (s p), well bore damage from drilling
and cementing (Sd), and the damage to the compacted Application of Proposed Equations
zone around the perforation (Sdp)' There may be an error uf 20 % or less in calculating pro-
ductivity of a perforated completion with Eqs. 5 and 6;
S=Sp +sd +Sdp' ........................... (4) however , they are more convenient to use than the7 more
nearly accurate nomographs of Hong 6 or Locke. They
are appropriate to use in the analysis of perforated com-
The perforation geometry skin factor, S p' is found from
pletions and in the design of well perforating, especially
several correlations that exist in the literature. 6 9 The
for high-permeability gas wells. The equations are also
easiest to use are those of Hong 6 or Locke. 7
convenient for programming and use in flowing well
The following equation for the damaged wellbore is
analysis 2 to predict the flow rate from a gas well. This
derived for radial flow into a wellbore and is well known
approach is verified by analyses of several perforated gas
in the literature. 10
wells as presented in the following.

Well A
This well was the first to show the impact of perforation
condition on the performance of a gas well in a high-
permeability formation. The well was completed in a
200-md formation and was perforated in an IS-Ibm/gal
The next equation for the compacted zone around the
(2160-kg/m3) mud with a 3~-in. (8-cm) gun at 2 shots/ft
perforation also can be derived from the radial flow
(2 shots/0.3 m). When production started at about 8,000
MscflD (229 090 std m 3 Id), the pressure drop, or
drawdown, into the well bore was about 1,100 psi (7580
kPa). More than 90% of this pressure drop was through
~) ......... (6) the compacted zone around each perforation, and more
kd than 80 % of this pressure drop through the perforation


q. Mscf/D 7.152 8.080 7,739 5,178 4,850 4,895

PR' psia 12,315 10,177 8,625 6,365 5,815 5,565
Pw',' psia 11,458 9,070 7,691 5,915 5,260 5,082
j,P, psia 857 1,107 934 450 555 483
P, psia 11,887 9,624 8,158 6,140 5,538 5,324
z 1.55 1.38 1.26 1.10 1.05 1.04
B, res bbl/Mscf 0.463 0.506 0.548 0.636 0.673 0.693
/1, cp 0.0380 0.034 0.031 0.0265 0.0245 0.0240
k dP ' md 5.1 5.3 6.1 6.7 5.2 6.1

P wf is calculated from surface pressure

area was caused by non-Darcy or turbulent flow. TABLE 2-WELL A DATA

This well was analyzed with the flow data in Table I
and the completion data in Table 2. A preliminary Formation permeability. md' 200
Net pay, perforated, ft 26
analysis showed that turbulent flow controlled the Estimated drainage radius, r., ft 1,320
pressure drop through the completion (mud-damaged Wellbore radius, ft 0.375
perforations). The perfomtions' damaged compacted Shots/ft, nih 2
zone provided more than 90% of the total pressure Radius of perforated hole, r p' in:' 0.19
Perforation penetration, Lp, in." 9
drawdown. Flow rate and pressure data (Table I) were Gas gravity 0.635
available from production tests made over a period of 12 Formation temperature, OF 245
months. These data were analyzed with Eqs. 2. 3, and 6
through 8 by assuming that s" and .I'd were negligible. Estimated from Sidewall core data
'Estlmated from APt perforallng data
The gas propeny data and calculated compacted-zone
permeability, k "'" also are shown in Table I. The results
are surprisingly consistent and confirm the turbulence ef-
fect since data were analyzed at two different flow mtes
of 5.000 and 8,000 Mscf/D (143 180 and 229 090 std Locke's correlation 7 was used to tind an of 1.7 for s"
m'/d). The perforation permeability. kd". is 2.5 to 3% 4 shots/ft (13 shots/m). 4 in. (10.1 em) deep, at 0 phas-
of original or undamaged formation permeability. and ing. This is very close to the s of 1.8 obtained by well
this is consistent with labomtory measurements on cores testing that indicates that s"
and .1''''' are near zero;
perforated in mud with pressure filtration into the core. therefore, little or no damage existed at the time of
testing around the perforated holes (i.e., k"" =k" =
Well B kR=8.6 md).
One can calculate the near-perforation permeability in-
This California well was perforated in brine with an
dependently with the non-Darcy parameter, D, with Eqs.
underbalance of 500 psi (3450 kPa). A I ~kin. (4-cm)
2 and 3.
through-tubing gun perforated 4 shots/ft (13 shots/m) at
0 phasing. This well was completed in 1972 and has
been tested several times since to determine gas reserves
in this single-well reservoir. Two excellent pressure-
D=0.0015=2.22(10) -15 ( ~",,~ ) (kRh)
I1-L"-r,, J.I.
buildup tests have been made following semi steady-state
flow periods at two different flow rates. Analyses of =2.22(10) -15 [ (O.6){3"" ]
these pressure-buildup tests provided the following data. (140) ~ (0.33) 2 (0.0 104)


5.250 9.6
.(o~:J ........................... (9)

197H 3.300 6.7

Solving for {3 d", we obtain
With these two data points, sand D were calculated to be
1.8 and 0.0015 per thousand standard cubic foot per day (3"" 1.75( 10)9 ft I
(standard cubic meter per day), respectively. The net pay
of 35 ft (107 m) was perforated in a gross interval at =2.6(10)10 k",,-1.2.* ................... (10)
7.447 to 7.502 ft (2270 to 2287 m) through 2%-in.
(6-cm) tubing, with an original bottomhole pressure
(BHP) of 3,555 psia (24 510 kPa).
k"" =9.5 md.
API perforating data were used to estimate perforation This is very close to but slightly higher than the 8.6 md
hole size. L" was 4 in. (10.2 em). orO.33 ft (0.1 m), and found from the pressure-buildup tests. If the perforation
r" was 0.125 in. (0.3 em), or 0.0104 ft (0.0032 m). penetration is changed slightly from 4 to 4.2 in. (10.2 to
Viscosity of the 0.6-gravity gas was estimated to be
0.021 cp (21 x JO -6 Pa' s). These data were used to
10.7 em), the calculated k""
equals 8.6 md exactly.
calculate the permeability of the near-perforation rock. ',3d" =7.93(10) '0 m-'

TABLE 3-WELL COAT A Klotz el al.' for a well perforated overbalanced in
filtered brine.
Gas gravity, "I 0.6
Perforation radius in rock, r p' in. 0.25 Additional data used in the preceding calculations are
Radius of compacted zone around given in Table 3.
perforation, r dp' in. 0.25+0.5=0.75
Gas flow rate, q, Mscf/D 6,240 Wells D and E
Net pay, h, ft 16
Viscosity, /l, cp 0.0218 Data were obtained* from offset wells completed in the
Wilcox-Slick fonnation in Live Oak County, TX. Well
D was perforated with a 1'lj6-in. (4-cm) through-tubing
gun and with a pressure underbalance of 800 psi (5515
This analysis shows that no pennanent damage was kPa). Well E was perforated with a 3Ys-in. (8.6-cm)
created by this underbalanced perforating technique. It tubing-run gun and with a pressure underbalance of
also shows that clean, small perforations still can restrict 2,085 psi (14 375 kPa). Data provided or estimated are
flow in a gas well because of non-Darcy flow into small shown in Table 4.
perforations. This restriction can be removed or greatly No pressure-buildup test data or core data were
reduced by more or larger perforations. available. The flow data from Well E were used to
calculate a fonnation penneability of 70 md by assuming
Well C that kc1k=1 for the perforation zone (i.e., kdp=kd=
An offshore Louisiana gas well was perforated over- 0.5k R ). This assumes ideal perforating. Then Well D
balanced by 200 psi (1380 kPa) in brine with 8 shots/ft was evaluated with a kR of 70 md, and a kdplkd of 0.4
(26 shots/m) in the top 12 ft (3.7 m) of a 16-ft (4.9-m) was found for a perforation length of 4.3 in. (10.9 cm).
pay zone. The penneability was computed to be 318 md Although the penneability data are not absolute, the
from a pressure-buildup test after a four-point flow test equations in this paper offer a way to evaluate per-
upon completion of the zone. The skin, s' =5 + D q' was forating results when different perforating techniques are
11.15. It was assumed that 5 =5 dl" so that used. Both these perforation jobs were weli executed
with excellent results: however, the comparison shows
5'=5+D q = 5dl' +Dq = 11.15 ................ (11) that perforating underbalanced with a large gun provides
a much more efficient completion.
Eqs. 2, 3, and 6 were combined with Eq. 1 to get one
equation with one unknown, k dp ' This was found to be
Results of Perforation Analysis
as follows for two assumed perforation lengths. Table 5 summarizes the perforation conditions calculated
from example well data and matches those numbers
recommended by Klotz et al. 3 except for Well B. The
Penneanilit\ tests on Well B took place 5 and 6 years after comple-
Ratio. k.le Ik' R tion. At that point any damage that occurred during per-
0.165 forating had disappeared. perhaps by gas flow drying out
and/or eroding the compacted zone. Flow tests made im-
This is in the range of perforation condition proposed by Winters. G.A.: personal commUnication. GeoVann Inc .. (Oct.1981)



Well D Well E
Perforation Data
Tubing gun 00, in. 19/ 16 3%
Shots/ft 4 4
Phasing, degrees 120
Pressure underbalance, psi
Distance perforated, ft

Perforation radius, , p' in.' 0.14 0.2
Perforation length, L p ' in.' 4 9
Perforation geometry, skin factor 1.8 0
Well Data
Flow rate, q, Mscf/D 1,676 2,127
Shutin BHP, psia 2,562 2,553
Flowing BHP, psia 2,154 2,437
Pressure drawdown, psi 408 116
Temperature, OR 580 580
Gas gravity' 0.65 0.65
Gas viscosity, cp' 0.025 0.025
Gas deviation factor, Z' 0.9 0.9
Drainage radius, ft 660 660
Wellbore radius, ft 0.35 0.35
Wellbore damage permeability ratio, k d1k R 0.5 0.5

Estimated data

mediately after completion showed a lower productivity bring in a natural completion, or he can recp!llmend less
that gradually improved, but this early improvement is expense on well preparation and perforating in favor of
attributed to cleanup of brine and filtrate from the the subsequent expense and risk of remedial acidizing, or
wellbore. This raises the question, "How long does per- other forms of stimulation. Current field practices and
foration damage persist in a producing well?" We know well response to remedial stimulation are important con-
that it persisted at least 1 year in Well A. Tests on Wells siderations in this decision.
C, D, and E took place shortly after completion and pro-
vide no answer to this question. Other Implications of
Data from Ref. 3 (Fig. 6 and Table 1) are summarized Perforation Analysis
here in Table 6 and may be used for perforation design Although the equations used here offer a simplified ap-
based on expected completion conditions. The proach to damage around the wellbore, they do pinpoint
permeability ratios, kclk, are based on labordtory data the location of significant damage that greatly restricts
measured on cores perforated under different conditions. oil and gas production.
The ratio kdplkR is probably equal to kc1k for wells per- The most significant damage around the wellbore in a
forated in mud in Table 6 even though the wellbore completed well is that small damaged zone around each
previously has been damaged by mud filtrate. Actual perforation that is only about 0.5 in. (1.3 cm) thick. This
kd/k R values for the other conditions are not that clear, suggests that acidizing need only remove the damage
and experimental work is needed on perforating cores within this thin cylinder around the perforation but that
that previously have been damaged by mud and cement acid must remove the damage from all the perforations to
filtrate. It is my opinion that k"l' =(k,.lk) xk" for the be effective. Therefore, adequate diverting agents for
brine-perforated wells. If so. the wellbore condition as a acids are necessary to acidize high-rate completions in
result of drilling and cementing is a significant factor high-permeability reservoirs adequately. Moreover,
even when excellent perforating procedures are used. because of the thin damage zone around each perfora-
Not enough is known about the effect of drilling fluid tion, the contact time of the acid with the perfQration is
'and cement filtrates on various sandstones. Up to this more important than the total volume of acid pumped in-
time, the effects of drilling and perforating all have been to the formation. Large vqlumes of acid pumped quickly
lumped into one skin factor when a well is tested. I hope through a few perforations will be an inefficient use of
that the approach presented in this paper will allow acid and will give results that are either short-lived or un-
separation of the effects of drilling and cementing from satisfactory. Using low injection rates and effective
perforating so that more rational and economical deci- diverting agents should remove all damage around
sions can be made on the drilling and completing of oil perforations.
and gas wells. In most wells that Conoco Inc. operates, the
After a well is drilled, ca~cd and cemented, an permeabilities are low enough that reservoir flow con-
engineer can use the technique pre).ented here to select trols production rate, and fracturing is needed to make
the best perforating procedures and size and number of these wells economical: however, along the U.S. gulf
shots to complete a well for optimal perfomlance. He coast the permeabilities are very high, and the greatest
can recommend more care and expen).e in perforating to loss of pressure during flow is a.t the well bore . This is the


kR Fluid Pressure
Well (md) ka/k R kaplka kdfkR Perforating Fluid (psi)
- - 0.03 weighted mud +500
A 200
B 8.6 1 brine -500
C 318 0.09 to 0.165 brine +200
D 70 0.20 0.4 0.5 brine -800
E 70 0.5 1.0 0.5 brine -2,085



Perforating Conditions Perforation Parameters

Core Flow
Fluid Efficiency
high solids, mud in + 0.3 0.01 to 0.03
low solids, mud in hole + 0.4 0.02 to 0.04
unfiltered salt water + 0.5 0.04 to 0.06
filtered salt water + 0.7 0.08 to 0.16
filtered salt water 0.8 0.15 to 0.25
clean, nondamaging fluid,
best techniques available 0.9 0.30 to 0.50
clean, nondamaging, ideal
perforator 1.0 1.00 to 1.00

zone with which we as well completion engineers are rd" = radius of compacted zone around perfora-
concerned. The type of equations presented and other tion. ft (m) .
similar ones can be very helpful to us in designing com- r" well drainage radius in reservoir. ft (m)
pletions. Focusing on the flow either into or out of per- r; radius of perforation in rock, ft (m)
forations that exist around the wellbore should help us in r", = wellbore radius (half of bit diameter). ft (m)
the design and selection of completion fluids; fluid loss s = overall skin factor for viscous or laminar
control additives for completion fluids; gravel packing
Darcy flow through restrictions around
with viscous, gelled fluids; acidizing; and plastic sand
wellbore, dimensionless
s" skin factor for flow through damaged zone
Conclusions around we\lbore caused by drilling mud
1. In actual perforated oil and gas wells, the long-held and cement filtrates
rule of thumb that 4 shots/ft (13 shots/m) with 6-in. s I" skin factor for flow through damaged and
(1S.2-cm) penetration is equivalent to an openhole com- compacted zone around perforation
pletion is not valid. s" = skin factor for effect of flow converging
2. The use of the openhole equivalent wellbore used in into perforations around wellbore
well testing to describe non-Darcy flow into a perforated T = formation temperature. OR (K)
well is inadequate and should be discarded. ~ gas deviation factor, dimensionless
3. The turbulence coefficient data provided by Katz et
{3 = velocity coefficient (for effects of turbulent
al. 11-12 can be used to describe pressure losses during
non-Darcy flow into a wellbore when the number, or non-Darcy flow through porous
physical geometry, and condition of real perforations are media), 11ft (11m)
considered. /' ;;;;; gas gravity, dimensionless
4. The geometry of perforations can be designed and iJ. ;;;;; viscosity, cp (Pa' s)
dimensions can be estimated from data provided by per-
forating service companies.
5. The guidelines provided by Klotz et al. 3 are valid Acknowledgments
and can be used to estimate permeabilities of the com- I am grateful to the management of Conoco Inc. for per-
pacted zone around a perforation for different perforating mission to publish this paper and to the many coworkers
fluids and pressure differentials. who helped with suggestions and contributed field data,
6. Well performance, perforating procedures. and on- especially Daryl Fontenot. Bob Burton, Richard Sieben-
site inspection of perforating operations can be analyzed man. Randy Crawford. and Bert Walther.
to define perforation condition in a well more accurately.
7. The model presented can be used with flowing well
analysis to predict the economic effects of perforating References
conditions and the number and size of perforations so 1. Jones, L.G., Blount. E.M .. and Glaze, O.H.: "Use of Short-
that engineers and production managers can make more Term Multiple-Rate Flow Tests To Predict Pertormance of Wells
rational decisions. Having Turbulence," paper SPE 6133 presented at the 1976 SPE
Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition. New Orleans. Oct.
Nomenclature 2. Mach. J .. Proano. E .. and Brown. K.E.: "Application of Produc-
B Ii = gas formation volume factor, res bbl/Mscf tion Systems Analysis to Determine Completion Sensitivity on
(res m 3 I std m 3 ) Gas Well Completion." paper 81Pet-13 presented at the ASME
Energy Sources Technical Conference, Houston. Jan. 18-22.
D = rate parameter for non-Darcy flow, 1981.
\/(MscflD) (d/std m 3 ) 3. Klotz. J.A .. Krueger. R.F .. and Pye. D.S.: "Effect of Perforation
h net pay. ft (m) Damage on Well Productivity," 1. Pel. Tech. (Nov. 1974)
1303-14: Trails .. AIME. 257.
k Jk = ratio of the permeability of a perforation's 4. Saucier. RJ. and Lands. J.F. Jr.: "A Labordtory Study of Per-
compacted zone to the permeability of a forations in Stressed Formation Rocks." 1. Pel. Tc'c!1. (Sept.
core before perforating (from API testing) 1978) 1347-53: Trails .. AIME. 265.
5. Bell. W.T .. Brieger. E.F .. and Harrigan. J.W. Jr.: "Labordtory
k" = permeability of damaged zone around Flow Characteristics of Gun Perforations, '. 1. Pel. Tech. (Sept.
wellbore as a result of invasion by 1972) 1095-1103.
drilling mud and cement filtrates, md 6. Hong, K.C.: "Productivity of Perforated Completions in Forma-

k"" ; ; ; permeability of damaged, compacted zone

tions With or Without Damage," 1. Pet. Tech. (Aug. 1975)
1027-38: Trails .. AIME. 259.
around perforation in rock, md 7. Locke. S.: .. An Advanced Method for Predicting the Productivity
k R = reservoir permeability, md Ratio of a Perforated Well." 1. Pet. Tech. (Dec. 1981) 2481-88.
8. Harris. M.H.: "How to Estimate Production from Ultrddeep Per-
L" = length of perforation in rock, ft (m) fordtions. Oil alld Gas 1. (Jan. I. 1968) 88-91.
n total number of perforations 9. Harris, M.H.: "The Effect of Pert'orating on Well Productivity."
P R = average reservoir pressure (bottomhole static 1. Pet. Tech. (April 1966) 518-28: TraIlS .. AIME. 237.
10. Matthews. C.S. and Russell. D.G.: Pn',lsure Buildup lind Floit'
pressure), psia (kPa) Tests in Wells, Monogrdph Series. SPE. Dallas (1967) 1. 21.
PlIf = flowing BHP, psia (kPa) II. Katz. D.L. el al.: Handhook of Natural Gas Elll!illeerilll!,
q ;;;;; gas flow rate. MscflD (std m 3 Id) McGraw-Hili Book Co. Inc .. New York City (1959) 405.

r" == radius of damaged zone around wellbore,

12. Firoozabadi. A. and Katz. D.L.: "An Analysis of High-Velocity
Gas Flow Through Porous Media," 1. Pel. Tech. (Feb. 1979)
ft (m) 211-16.

APPENDIX A The total pressure drop with this damaged zone around
an ideal wellbore is now 68 psi (469 kPa). 'still much less
Flow Into a Gas Well than the actual 1,100 psi (7580 kPa) found for Well A.
In a high-permeability reservoir (100 md or greater), the Eq. A-5 was derived from Eq. A-2 for the extra
pressure drop from the drainage boundary to near the pressure drop caused by turbulent flow into the cylin-
well bore is small compared with the pressure drop of gas drical zone around the perforation. It assumes that flow
flow into damaged perforations. Flow into an undamag- is distributed equally to all perforations. with a uniform
ed we II bore (equivalent to an ideal openhole completion) flux along each perforation.
can be calculated with the radial gas flow equation,
1,424J,tz Tq
----[lnO.472(r e lr w )] . ... (A-I)
kRh Lp

Eq. A-I and data from Well A in Appendix B give a

drawdown of 28 psi (193 kPa) through the reservoir with
r~p)' .................. (A-5)
undamaged permeability.
Eq. A-I is for viscous or laminar flow. Nonlaminar where
flow. or visco-inertial flow. as it is sometimes called, oc-
curs in gas reservoirs. The additional pressure drop n number of perforations,
caused by these gas-velocity effects are higher near the Lp = length of perforation in formation, ft (m),
wellbore. Previous studies of this effect considered the
rp = radius of perforation, ft (m), and
pressure drop into an idealized openhole completion.
Katz et al. II presented an equation describing turbulent r dp = radius of compacted zone around perfora-
or visco-inertial flow: tion. ft (m) (see Fig. I).

1,424J,tz Tq The turbulence coefficient. {3. is a function 'of the re-

----[ln0.472(r e 1r II')] duced permeability around the perforation, k dp ' accord-
ing to Eq. A-3.
Eq. A-5 can be related to the general radial flow equa-
3.161(10) - I -{3
~ I' q-zT
~ --- (I I) tion (Eq. I) to express D in terms of perforation dimen-
sions and properties of the compacted zone around the
+ rw re. . ... (A-2) perforation:
This equation using laboratory-derived values of {3 has D=2.22(lO) 15 (kRhl') [~(~ _ _
I )].
not matched the effects seen in actual practice. For in- J,t n Lp rp rdp
stance. in the preceding example, turbulence from gas
flow through a 200-md sand into an open hole wellbore .... '................. (A-6)
will produce an added pressure drop of only 1 psi
(7 kPa).
The turbulence coefficient used in Eq. A-2 can be If we neglect IIr dp. we obtain
computed from

(3 =2.6(1 0) 10k -\.2. . ..................... (A-3)

D=2.22(1O)-15 (kRhl') ( (3dP~ ) ..... (A-7)'
n 2 Lp ~r p
This equation was derived from the straight-line plot of
the data provided by Firoozabadi and Katz. 12
The last group of variables can be called a perforation
One can modify this equation further by adding a
factor (PF), so that
damaged zone around the wellbore such that kd is equal
to 0.1 kR' where the damaged zone has a thickness of
0.5 ft (0.15 m). so that the damaged zone radius is equal
PF=:= ~ ~ ......................... (A-8)
to 0.5+r".=0.875 ft (0.267 m). wLp~rp

This factor is defined by perforation dimensions and

permeability of the compacted zone. It is a convenient
factor to use in preliminary flowing well analysis before
. [In(0.472r('lrl\') + (:: -1)ln(r{t/r w )] specific perforation dimensions are estimated from API
perforation test data.
3.16I(lO)-12 W 2 Z T Neglecting IIr dp introduces an error, especially for
+----------~--- large-diameter perforations. This results in a higher
h2 calculated pressure drop than the actual, but the error is
offset partially because turbulent flow also occurs out-
. (A-4) side the compacted zone in a region of somewhat higher


Laminar Turbulent
Model Reservoir Skin Skin Total
- -
Ideal, undamaged wellbore 28 0 1 29
Damaged open hole wellbore
kef =20 md 28 29 11 68
kef =5 md 28 126 55 209
Perforated well bore
Damaged perforations
(k d = 50 md, k dp = 5 md) 28 143 1,073 1,246
Ideal perforations, damaged
well bore (k d :: 50 md) 28 17 64 109
Ideal completion
(k efp = k d = k R 200 md) 28 2 12 42

The penneability of the compacted zone around the around each perforation, with any turbulent losses in the
perforation is usually much lower than the penneability radial wellbore away from the perforations ignored. The
around the wellbore because of the compaction caused data in Table BI are used for these calculations.
by the perforating process. 3.5 This penneability, k dp ' in
Well A was found to be 5 to 6 md, only 2.5 to 3% of the
Laminar Flow Skin
fonnation penneability. The extra pressure drop caused
by turbulent flow in Well A at 8,080 MscflD (231 382 . Perforation Geometry.
std m 3 /d) is calculated to be 1.073 psi (7398 kPa) with
Eqs. A-3 and A-5 (neglecting the factor lIr dp)' Sp 0.45 (see Ref. 7).
Table A-I compares the extra pressure drop caused by
turbulent flow through the rock around the wellbore as
calculated with Eqs. A-I through A-5. It is obvious that
both the limited inflow area of perforations and the low Wellbore Damage From Drilling.
penneability of the damaged, compacted zone around
the perforation increase greatly the pressure drop from
non-Darcy (turbulent) gas flow.

Example Pressure Drop Calculations 200 1.375
( I) In--
for a Perforated Well 50 0.375
The following is a calculated example to show what can
be expected from well-perforating condition. The tur-
bulent pressure drop is calculated only for the zone = 3.9.

Gas flow rate, q, MscflD 8,080
Formation temperature, T, OF 245 Approximate
Gas deviation factor, Z 1.415 ,lp2 Pressure Drop
0.035 Flow Path
Viscosity, #'-' cp
~ (psi)
Reservoir permeability, k R' md reservoir 2.41 30
Net pay, h, It 26 laminar skin 11.46 143
Well drainage radius in reservoir, r e' It 1,320 turbulent skin 86.13 1,073
Wellbore radius, r w' in. 4.5
Average reservoir pressure, P R' psia 10,177 100 1,246
Permeability of damaged zone around wellbore,
kef, md 0.25k R =50
Permeability of damaged, compacted zone
around perforation in rock, k dp' md 0.1 kd=5
Shots/It 2
Phasing, degrees 180
Perforation penetration into formation, L p ' It 0.75
Perforation diameter, in. 0.38
Compacted zone thickness, in. 0.5

'In this example. gas properties are evaluated at the reServoir pressure.
PR 10.177psia
",d = 1.375 ft. and' w =0.375 11

Perforation Compacted, Damaged Zone.

Sdp (n: p
)(:; ::)In(:;) (1.424)(0.035)(1.415)(755)(8,080)
26 (200 200) (0.19+0.5)
(52)(0.75) -5- - 50 In 0.19
[ In(0.472)--
= 30.95. 0.375

Combined Laminar Skin, s. + 35.3 +(0.03285)(8,080)]

= 77.256 (7.42+35.3+265.4)
= 0.45+3.9+30.95

35.3 = 77,256 (308.1)

Turbulence Parameter, D
p."! = 8,931 psia (61 577 kPa).
f3 2.6(10) 10k I.~
1.246 psi (8591 kPa).
= 2.6(10) 10(5) -I.~

Table 8-2 summarizes the pressure drop through the

reseIVoir and the damaged zones. Turbulent flow
pressure drop through the compacted damaged zone
around the perforation is by far the most significant.
D=2.22(IO) 15( ,f3y, )(kRh)
n-Lp-rl' J.I.
SI Metric Conversion Factors
s[ "J.77( IO)~(o.635) ]
= 2.22(10) - I . bbl x 1.589873 E-OI m3
(52)~(0.75)2(0.0158) ep x 1.0* E-03 Pa's
ft x 3.048* E-01 m
. [(200)(26) ] OF (OF-32)/1.8 C
0.035 in. x 2.54* E+OO em
psi x 6.894757 E+OO kPa
= 0.03285. sef x 2.86364 E-02 std m 3

Conversion factor is exact JPT

Calculated Pressure Drop
Original manuscript received in Society of Petroleum Engineers office Jan. 5. 1981
, _ 1
D.p- = PR- -Pllr =
kh Paper accepted for publication Aug. 12. 1982. Revised manuscript received Nov. 17.
1982. Paper (SPE 10649) first presented at the 1982 SPE Formation Damage Control
Symposium held in Lafayette. LA March 24-25.