We present a deconvolution technique based on a fast-Fourier-transform (FFT) algorithm. With the new technique, we can deconvolve "noisy" pressure and rate data from drawdown and buildup tests dominated by wellbore storage. The wellbore-storage coefficient can be variable in the general case. In cases with no rate measurements, we use a "blind" deconvolution method to restore the pressure response free of wellbore-storage effects. Our technique detects the afterflow/unloading rate function with Fourier analysis of the observed pressure data.
The technique can unveil the early-time behavior of a reservoir system masked by wellbore-storage effects, and it thus provides a powerful tool to improve pressure-transient-test interpretation. It has the advantages of suppressing the noise in the measured data, handling the problem of variable wellbore storage, and deconvolving the pressure data without rate measurement.
We demonstrate the applicability of the method with a variety of synthetic and actual field cases for both oil and gas wells. Some of the actual cases include measured sandface rates (which we use only for reference purposes), and others do not.
Although this paper is focused on deconvolution of pressure-transient-test data during a specific drawdown/buildup period corresponding to an abrupt change of surface flow rate, the deconvolution method itself is very general and can be extended readily to interpret multirate test data.