Flow-Control-Devices for Thermal Recovery Operations

Disciplines: Reservoir

Course Description

This 1-day course is an introduction to design and optimization of Flow-Control-Devices (FCDs) and to thermodynamics and pressure-volume-temperature (PVT) in horizontal wells in Thermal Recovery Operations for both SAGD and SA-SAGD. The interaction between reservoir and FCD, and design charts created to evaluate the response of the FCD are discussed. The following topics will be covered:

  • Different types of the Flow-Control-Devices defining their characteristic curves, and Operating Principles of FCDs
  • The review of Previous Use of the Flow-Control-Devices in Canadian SAGD projects: pros and cons.
  • Introduction to thermodynamics and pressure-volume-temperature (PVT): basic law such as: Clausius-Clapeyron Equation, Dalton's law, Henry's Law and Raoult’s law are explained and practical examples such as temperature reduction in chamber due to NCG injection, and temperature reduction at Azeotropic point in ES-SAGD process will be solved numerically. 
  • Production Challenges in Solvent Operation: Liquid-pool model and concept will be explained and concern with steam trap control for Nsolv will be discussed and numerically explained. 
  • Effects of Steam quality on Inflow- Control-Devices (ICD) and Outflow-Control-Devices (OCD). 
  • Flashing effect in FCD for both SAGD and SA-SAGD applications
  • Liquid Pool modeling: a method to calculate the liquid pool level from temperature profile in observation wells will be discussed, and an algebraic equation for liquid pool depletion based on wellbore drawdown, subcool and emulsion productivity is generated and discussed in practical examples. A minimum subcool concept (or target reservoir subcool) is discussed and calculated as a function of skin and pressure draw-down. 

At the end of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Become familiar with fundamentals of phase behavior modeling 
  • Be able to carry out simple phase-equilibria calculations 
  • Become familiar with fundamentals of multi-phase flow in pipe
  • Be able to read and understand the FCD characteristic curves
  • Be able to optimize a FCD for a given producer
  • Be able to carry out simple nodal analysis for SAGD producer
  • Become familiar with fundamentals of steam trap control and minimum subcool concept
  • Understanding benefits and limitations of implementation of FCDs for SAGD producer

Learning Level


Course Length

1 Day

Why Attend

Recently introducing flow control devices (FCDs) as a new method to optimize well operations, and in the same time due to GHG reduction interest many operators are evaluating solvent aided-SAGD as an option. Currently there is an extensive need to predict the production performance of SA-SAGD processes considering the production constraints and flow restrictions across chokes and orifices in FCDs. This course presents the fundamentals of liquid pool IPR and FCD flow restriction and their interactions in SA-SAGD. 

Who Attends

Production engineers, reservoir simulation engineers need to model flow control devices (FCDs) for SAGD and solvent applications. And technology development leaders that are involved in implementation of FCD.

Special Requirements

  • Students will need laptops.
  • Participants should have understanding on one-phase flow such as its frictional pressure calculation.
  • Participants should have basic knowledge of Microsoft Excel.
  • Participants should have moderate experience or exposure to the topic.


0.8 CEUs (Continuing Education Units) are awarded for this 1-day course.

Cancellation Policy

All cancellations must be received no later than 14 days prior to the course start date. Cancellations made after the 14-day window will not be refunded. Refunds will not be given due to no show situations.

Training sessions attached to SPE conferences and workshops follow the cancellation policies stated on the event information page. Please check that page for specific cancellation information.

SPE reserves the right to cancel or re-schedule courses at will. Notification of changes will be made as quickly as possible; please keep this in mind when arranging travel, as SPE is not responsible for any fees charged for cancelling or changing travel arrangements.

We reserve the right to substitute course instructors as necessary.


Mazda Irani is acting as a CTO of Ashaw Energy. He is currently engaged in the designing and optimization of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) and proper near wellbore modeling for the SAGD wells. One of his main tasks is to help and develop a software that can help operators run their SAGD wells at optimum subcool, manage the hot spots, and modify their FCD design in heterogeneous reservoirs. He published a trilogy paper named “On Subcool Control in Steam-Assisted-Gravity-Drainage Producers"

Dr. Irani was previously employed in technical and supervisory roles with Cenovus Energy, Suncor Energy, RPS Energy, and C-FER Technologies. He has published and presented more than 40 technical papers on different aspects of SAGD operation. Dr. Irani holds a PhD in petroleum engineering (U of C 2017) and geomechanics (U of A 2012) and three Masters degrees in petroleum engineering, geotechnical engineering, and structural engineering.

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