Baker Hughes’ SHADOW is a permanent, large-bore, flow-through fracture plug designed to be left downhole after fracturing operations are complete. The plugs completely eliminate the mill-out phase of plug-and-perforate completions and allow operators to avoid the cost and health, safety, and environmental risk associated with coiled-tubing intervention. The plugs feature a large flow-through inside diameter and use nanostructured disintegrating fracture balls, allowing production flow with the plugs in place as soon as fracturing operations are complete. The fracture balls hold pressure during fracturing and completely disintegrate in the well when exposed to produced fluids. Because the plugs stay in the well, they can be set deeper than the reach of coiled-tubing-conveyed milling tools, allowing longer lateral sections and maximizing reservoir access. The plug was field tested on two of seven wells in the Horn River basin, while the other five wells were completed with conventional composite plugs. The wells with the new fracture plugs produced at the same volume as the wells using the composite plugs. Because the drillout phase was eliminated, the time on well was reduced by approximately 2 days for a cost savings of USD 150,000/well.
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