What Are Artificial Lift Systems ?

When an oil or gas well is first opened, there is typically plenty of existing pressure and volume to get oil and gas to the surface. However, after time that initial boost dwindles, and to compensate for the lack of natural energy in these formations, operators equip the wells with artificial lift (AL) systems. Artificial lift well candidates are those completed in formations that have economically viable reserves and sufficient permeability for the fluids to move to the wellbore but do not have sufficient reservoir drive to lift those fluids to the surface. 

An artificial lift system is the use of mechanical devices or methods to increase the flow of fluids in oil and gas wells that lack sufficient reservoir pressure. Artificial lift can be used to enhance production, extend the life of a well, or start a new well with a strong flow. Some of the most common types of artificial lift are Progressive Cavity Pump, Rod Lift, Plunger Lift, Gas Lift, Hydraulic Lift, and Electric Submersible Pump.

Artificial Lift Systems

Artificial lift systems are deployed predominantly to extend well life. But these systems may also help shorten the time from first production to well abandonment. For example, operators may gain an economic advantage by accelerating recovery rates, a process that more quickly drains the reservoir, thus saving expenses in situations characterized by high operating costs.

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