A basic approach to wellbore two-phase flow modeling
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This study presents a simplified two-phase flow model using the drift-flux approach to well orientation, geometry, and fluids. For estimating the static head, the model uses a single expression for liquid holdup, with flow-pattern-dependent values for flow parameter and rise velocity. The gradual change in the parameter values near transition boundaries avoids discontinuity in the estimated gradients, unlike most available methods. Frictional and kinetic heads are estimated using the simple homogeneous modeling approach. We present a comparative study involving the new model as well as those that are based on physical principles, also known as semimechanistic models. These models include those of Ansari et al, Gomez et al, and OLGA. Two other widely used empirical models, Hagedorn and Brown and PE2, are also included. The main ingredient of this study entails the use of a small but reliable dataset, wherein calibrated PVT properties minimizes uncertainty from this important source. Statistical analyses suggest that all the models behave in a similar fashion and that the models based on physical principles appear to offer no advantage over the empirical models. Uncertainty of performance appears to depend upon the quality of data input, rather than the model characteristics. Copyright 2007, Society of Petroleum Engineers.