The Impact of Autonomous Inflow Control Valve on Enhanced Oil Recovery in SAGD Application


  • Farhan Hasin Alam
  • Amin Tahami
  • Nora C.I. Furuvik
  • Britt M.E. Moldestad
  • Soheila Taghavi



Autonomous Inflow Control Valve, AICV, Enhanced Oil Recovery, SAGD, EOR, CMG, Simulation


The demand for non-conventional oil has increased globally. Non-conventional oil is categorized as extra heavy oil and bitumen. In reservoirs with extra heavy oil and bitumen, thermal methods are used to reduce the oil viscosity. Steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) is a thermal recovery method to enhance the bitumen recovery. In this method, steam is injected to bitumen and heavy oil to reduce the viscosity and make the oil mobile and extractable. To obtain an efficient SAGD process, the residence time for steam in the reservoir must be long enough for the steam to condense and release the latent energy to be transferred to the cold bitumen. Early breakthrough of steam in some parts of the well will eventually limit the oil production and must be avoided. Autonomous inflow control valve (AICV) can prevent the steam breakthrough and restrict the excessive production of steam. The objective of this paper is to investigate the performance of AICV and its impacts on increased oil production in a SAGD production well. This is achieved by focusing on the implementation, and performance evaluation of inflow control devices (ICDs) and AICVs compared with standard well perforations. CMG STARS, a multi-phase, multi-component thermal reservoir simulator, is used to perform numerical simulation studies. The simulation results demonstrate the significant benefit of AICV in steam reduction compared to ICD and well perforations. The simulation results demonstrate that utilizing AICV in a SAGD reservoir will lead to higher oil production, less steam production, and a more uniform temperature distribution, and steam chamber conformance. Reduction in steam production, will improve the overall SAGD operation performance. This will also result in more cost-effective oil production, as less steam is needed to be generated for production of each barrel of oil.