Mining Publication: Improved Methods for Monitoring Production From Vertical Degasification Wells
In this Bureau of Mines investigation, production was monitored for 1 year at over 30 coalbed gas-drainage boreholes located in Alabama, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Results indicate that the quality of data gathered from such wells can be improved greatly if potential problems are anticipated and prevented in the early stages of well production. Major water-monitoring problems include solids buildup, freezing, the presence of gas in surface waterlines, and improper pumping interval settings. Such problems may be avoided by incorporating in the original well design waterline filters, sand screens, separator tanks, and systems to automatically control pumping intervals. Problems related to measurement of coalbed gas flow include large quantities of water vapor contained in the gas, especially during winter months; freezing and subsequent obstruction of flow; sudden, uncontrolled release of gas pressure; and solids buildup in metering equipment. The installation of commercially available items, such as filters, separators, and insulation, and the thoughtful application of a basic knowledge of coalbed gas reservoir characteristics will prevent most production monitoring problems.