Examine key topics associated with high-density drilling, including:
Multi-well pad drilling benefits - logistical improvements such as reducing overall well costs, enabling of simultaneous operations, and improving infrastructure.
Moving from single well performance to drilling spacing unit (DSU) performance or more - well spacing, multi-laterals, and integrated design teams.
Stakeholder impact - noise, traffic, duration of activity, and social license to operate.
As lease-retention drilling in US shale plays shifts to the development phase, more wells per section are being drilled. The term high-density drilling (HDD) describes this placement of several horizontal wells in a drilling spacing unit. As HDD becomes more common across the US, new opportunities and new issues are emerging.
An ongoing benefit of this large-scale movement to HDD is the enabling of new technologies and processes to improve efficiency and reduce development costs in all aspects of drilling, completions, and production. In addition, reducing the physical and environmental footprint of operations helps address some serious stakeholder impact issues, while creating some new ones.
These various improvements create a holistic, “reservoir development” approach to minimizing the footprint, while maximizing returns on a development program.