Real Options Conference 2024

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Learning, Uncertainty Reduction and Optimizing The Location of Delimitation Wells In Hydrocarbon E&p

The phases associated with the search for, and production of hydrocarbon reservoirs are known as Exploration and Production (E&P). The five main phases are: exploration, evaluation, development, production, and abandonment. As each step depends on the previous one, a combination of successful exploration, optimized assessment and commercial extraction is required to ensure a successful E&P cycle. Determining the number of appraisal wells is a problem widely discussed in the literature, however, studies are limited in determining the number and location of wells to obtain maximum profitability. There is no systematic approach. In this work we will use uncertainty reduction to optimize the location of wells. A quantity known as a learning measure will be used to measure the reduction of uncertainty in obtaining information. We use Geostatistics to obtain the spatial correlations of the delimitation wells. The study will complement the analysis of the value of information in the context of reducing uncertainty via evaluation wells. We will also analyze the value of flexibility quantified through real options theory which emphasizes the value of information. The use of real options will take place through the problem of delimiting the volume of oil, considering that there is already a discovery. This option is called a learning option because our objective is to resolve doubts in the delimitation stage and subsequently decide whether or not to develop the discovered field. This decision is strongly influenced by the economic context, known in the literature as market uncertainty.

Wellington Nascimento
PUC-Rio and Petrobras

Marco Pacheco

Marco Dias

Carlos Bastian-Pinto

Luiz Brandão
PUC-Rio and University of Texas at Austin
United States


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