BECH Products, the next generation “smart” well completion tools

Providing improved reservoir drainage, improved injection, and greatly improved proppant and sand placement.

We have the three new products for wellbore (downhole) integration:

  1. BulletBECH-AFD (autonomous flow control device) as described in the May 2010 issue of the SPE magazine JPT

  2. BulletBECH-FRAC

  3. BulletBECH-FAFD

These products are developed and provided through our spin-off company BECH Wellbore Flow Control AS in Norway.


September 12, 2011: BECH Wellbore Flow Control AS is developing an autonomous down hole flow control device, (BECH-AFD), that automatically adjusts its choke setting to required inflow or injection, as reservoir pressure changes with depletion/injection.

The project will include performing detailed engineering and design of our patented BECH-AFD, followed by piloting and testing/qualification of the complete autonomous valve system.

This is funded under Statoil’s LOOP product development program, which supports new innovative technologies that enhance their business areas. Partial funding is being provided by Innovation Norway and Skattefunn, while also the share holders of BECH contribute with a substantial funding.

BECH is pleased to work on this next generation self-adjusting “ICD” with Statoil, which is a leading user of inflow control devices.

February 3, 2012: Extensive testing of the AFD and comparing this with a standard ICD has been performed, where we have learned that the AFD is performing as expected. In low to high viscosity fluid flow-through, we record significant higher flow rates through the AFD than the ICD when inflow pressure drops below initial choke setting (as it will in a wellbore). Hence, significant higher flow rates as well as stable production can be expected.

Example photo at right shows ICD falling off to close to no flow, while AFD maintains original flow rate. (Fluid flowed through is viscous sun flower oil.)
dP across valves is 4 bar (59 psi) where AFT maintains a flow through of 23 liters/hour.

See also YouTube or Vimeo video. Click here to learn more what’s really happening and what benefits this has with respect to wellbore implementation.

The graph above illustrates very well how our AFD maintains the preset flow rate (Y-axis) with decreasing dP (being pressure differential from the reservoir to the wellbore) illustrated here in bar along the x-axis. Note the rapid drop off of flow rate through the ICD.

Each AFD mandrel can hold up to 4 AFD´s. Hence, above flow rates can be multiplied by 4. Note also that we can set the AFD to higher flow rates than illustrated if required.

BECH-AFD (Autonomous Flow-control Device)

“Smart” ICD’s with improved value and functionality

ICD’s, (inflow control devices), have been incorporated into well completions for years. They are passive chokes set at surface prior to installation. Pressure drop will occur over time, which can greatly diminish the effectiveness of ICD’s.

Please note from SPE paper 124154 by Liang-Biao Ouyang with Chevron: “Often the well characteristics change from initial flow input used to select ICD; hence, an ICD with automatic adjustment capability to compensate for change in well inflow condition is desired”.

This is exactly the function that we have implemented in the BECH-AFD, autonomous flow-regulating device: it is self-regulating and installed as an integrated part of the ICD completion tools and requires no lines to surface.

Photo above shows AFD mandrel, where two AFD valves can be seen. The mandrel may hold up to 4 AFD valves. Flow enters into tubing string through hole seen in the center of the picture, through the AFD and then into the tubing (or liner) string. A sand screen would typically be interfaced onto part of the mandrel.

See videos of BECH-AFD compared to standard type ICD, plus other information from Dr. Aadnoy about the use of such technologies.

Key features, BECH-AFD (autonomous flow-control valve):

  1. BulletAutomatically adjust flow or injection rate to desired setting, to accommodate changing reservoir pressure, as well as individual changes in reservoir pressure at various locations throughout reservoir

  2. BulletImproves efficiency and value of ICD installations

  3. BulletCan be used in horizontal, as well as vertical wellbores

  4. BulletCan be used to control inflow from multilateral wellbore sections

  5. BulletCan be designed to be retrofitted into existing completion

AFD background:

Dr. Bernt Aadnoy, professor at the University of Stavanger, invented the BECH autonomous flow control valve. Bernt has published a number of SPE papers and has also authored the SPE book Advanced Drilling and Well Technology.

He has performed in-depth investigation and evaluation of ICD’s, and has found several shortcomings in the technologies offered today. From this, he came up with the patented method of incorporating an autonomous flow control valve (AFD) in the downstream location of the chokes. This solution, called the Rygervalve initially, provides significant advantages when reservoir pressure and/or pressure between the various reservoir locations along a horizontal wellbore, changes by depletion or injection.

See YouTube or video at bottom of this web page, where Dr. Aadnoy explains the function of the his valve design.

Dr. Aadnoy:
“From a production perspective the AFD will maintain nearly constant flow throughout the life of the well. The ICD chokes too much at low drawdown, which is not beneficial at the end of the wells life.  If you have a horizontal well with the OWC horizontal below, theoretically you can empty the reservoir before you get 100 % water cut.
The autonomous valve can play an important role in the field economy as it can drain the field at nearly half the time of the ICD, with an improved performance.”

BECH-FRAC (Frac sleeve)

Enhance fracture and
flow-back efficiency, improving reservoir drainage

BECH-FRAC is a new multi-position frac sleeve that increases production by keeping the proppant in the fractures to hold them open. Often we hear that fractures in the shale formations close quickly which contributes to rapid decline in production rates. The BECH-FRAC will help reduce that problem.

Key features, BECH-FRAC:

  1. BulletSeparate outflow and inflow ports, that allows placement of proppants/sand into fractures while preventing flowback of this when producing well

  2. Prevent loss of proppants/sand when flowing well

  3. Minimize fracture collapse due to loss of proppants/sand

  4. Remove need for resin-coated proppants?

  5. Minimizes proppants/sand fill in horizontal borehole, reducing clean out cost and improving well intervention successes

  6. BulletThe valve can as an option incorporate AFD functions into wells that are stimulated using “frac sleeves”

  7. BulletIntroduce also the additional option to incorporate the BECH autonomous flow regulating valve

  8. BulletAbility to close off flow through valve, by well intervention

  9. BulletCan be adapted to frac sleeves from supplier of your choice

BECH-FAFD (“Smart” frac sleeve)

Game changing combination for shale area well completions

Our BECH-FAFD is a combination of above of the BECH-AFD and BECH-FRAC.

Key features, BECH-FAFD:

  1. BulletIntroduce the ability to install AFD’s in unconventional resource (oil/gas) wells that are fractured with proppants/sand

  2. BulletIntroduce an improved reservoir drainage

  3. BulletImproved water unloading from the individual stimulated zones to improve gas production

  4. BulletCan be closed by intervention to shut of gas or water inflow

Patents pending.

Additional reading:

The following papers, including several from SPE, relate to ICD’s and provide good information regarding history, function, and a detailed description of the autonomous flow device:

  1. BulletSPE paper 122824, Analysis of inflow control devices, by Bernt S. Aadnoy et al. Featured in the May 2010 issue of the JPT magazine, page 52.

  2. BulletA short note on inflow performance related to ICD´s and Facts and Fictions about Inflow Control Devices, by Bernt S. Aadnoy

  3. BulletA new inflow control device, the Rygervalve, by Bernt S. Aadnoy

  4. BulletSPE paper 124154, Practical consideration of an inflow control device application for reducing water production, by Liang-Biao Ouyang

  5. BulletSPE paper 124677, Understanding the roles of inflow-control devices in optimizing horizontal-well performance, by Preston Fernandez, Zhuoyi Li and D. Zhu

  6. BulletEffects of slug flow through ICD’s and AFD’s by Bernt S. Aadnoy

  7. BulletMore online video’s


HANSEN Energy Solutions LLC and two external partners have established the company BECH Wellbore Flow Control AS in Norway, where HANSEN is responsible for the BECH business. This company owns the IP described on this web page.

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