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Title: Replication of Oil & Gas Projects: A Model for Achieving Predictability on Oil Sands' SAGD Plants
Author: Halari, Alnoor Akberali
Advisor: Jergeas, George
Keywords: Business Administration--Management;Engineering--Chemical;Engineering--Civil
Issue Date: 5-May-2014
Abstract: Replication in some mature industries is quite common and has been very successful. Every automobile manufactured of a certain year and model is identical, and so is every airplane, with a few variations. Every McDonalds restaurant has the same kind of deep fryer, and similar if not identical floor plans. In the oil & gas industry generally, a few examples of Replication exist, but in the oil sands’ Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) industry, it is a relatively new concept. Numerous papers have been written and research done in the oil sands’ sub-surface reservoirs, but little on the building of the surface plants that actually support it during production. A thesis by Halari (2011) recommends Replication as a strategy to mitigate issues encountered during execution of SAGD plants, and forms the genesis of this research. This much required research into Replication of SAGD plants, which includes industry opinion based on experience of over 140 practitioners, identifies the critical factors in executing replicated SAGD plants. Among these, the most significant critical factors found by this study include: • Effective resource development planning; • Standardization as a major design criterion; and • A proper understanding of the Replication concept and effort required to implement. Grounded on the critical factors collected, a SAGD Replication Model is created in this research. It focuses on the four key pillars of Development Economics, Reservoir Planning, Replication Philosophy, and Engineering Design, which SAGD developers need to evaluate based on their company’s respective contexts. Through analysis, this research has also developed some new and interesting concepts such as the inverse relationship between change and Replication, the impact and correlation between time and Replication, and the most important of all, the definition of Replication within the context of oil & gas projects. It is the intent of this initial research to provide a point of reference in developing new projects based on Replication in the oil & gas industry and SAGD in particular. Hopefully, the thinking and concepts it presents will create a dialogue among industry and academia while providing grounds to germinate newer ideas and further research.
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