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Applicability of decision analysis on Cooper gas field development planning.

Isham, Noor Shaheeza

Engineering Honours Degree 2009

University of Adelaide


Decision Analysis (DA) is a term first used by Professor Ron Howard in 1964 to describe a methodology based on a probabilistic framework which facilitates high-quality, logical discussions that leads to a clear and compelling actions. This analysis involves three main stages which are the framing/structuring, modelling/evaluating and the assessing/deciding stage.

It is expected that a considerable amount of investment decisions will be required to pursue field development planning in the extensive gas fields of the Cooper Basin in South Australia. In 2009, phase 1 of the Greater Tindilpie (GT) field development planning involves de-risking 2P and infill drilling evaluation while phase 2 will begin in 2010. Decision Analysis is one “tool” that is adopted to assist in creating a plan for phase 2 of this GT Asset with a focus on identifying and evaluating major strategies.

This honours project is aimed at applying the three stages in DA to the GT Asset in order to develop a plan to convert 2.1 TCF of resources to reserves. Out of the four strategies that were identified, “accelerated production” is recognized as the best go-forward strategy. Sensitivity analysis was then conducted to look at changes of output by varying the rate and reserves estimation for each strategy. The final results are documented and further discussed.

There has also been debate regarding the practicality of this analysis in the industry. One author argued that this analysis does not contribute to real improvement in decision making while another says that people treat this analysis with real distaste. Therefore, this honours project will also briefly look into the acceptance of the personnel working in this project regarding the Decision Analysis method. In brief, the personnel working with this analysis agrees that DA is a good approach to solving a decision problem. However, care should be taken before using this result to try and picture the general acceptance of this analysis due to only a small number of people participating in the survey.

Australian School of Petroleum



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