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Defining Regions of Hydraulic-Fracture Connectivity Aids in Designing Completions

Using large-scale hydraulic-fracturing experiments on tight shale outcrops, three dominant regions controlling stage production were identified—the connector between the wellbore and the fracture system, the near-wellbore fracture, and the far-wellbore fracture network. The particular nature of these regions may change depending on the play, the reservoir makeup, its relation to the in-situ stress, and the distribution of rock properties; however, these regions are always well differentiated. Understanding the role of each of these components in hydrocarbon production is fundamental to identifying the dominant sources of fracture-conductivity loss and accelerated production decline.

Introduction

Achieving economic production from nanodarcy-scale-permeability, organic-rich-mudstone reservoirs requires creating large surface area by hydraulic fracturing. More importantly, economic production depends on preserving the created surface area and fracture conductivity during long-term production. This paper is about understanding the surface area (fracture geometry) that is created in heterogeneous rocks with complex makeup, preserving the surface area after fracturing, and maintaining adequate fracture conductivity during long-term production.

This article, written by Special Publications Editor Adam Wilson, contains highlights of paper SPE 166505, “Defining Three Regions of Hydraulic-Fracture Connectivity in Unconventional Reservoirs Helps in Designing Completions With Improved Long-Term Productivity,” by Roberto Suarez-Rivera, SPE, Schlumberger; Larry Behrmann, Schlumberger consultant; Sid Green, SPE, Schlumberger and University of Utah; and Jeff Burghardt, SPE, Sergey Stanchits, Eric Edelman, SPE, and Aniket Surdi, Schlumberger, prepared for the 2013 SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, New Orleans, 30 September–2 October. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
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Defining Regions of Hydraulic-Fracture Connectivity Aids in Designing Completions

01 March 2014

Volume: 66 | Issue: 3

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