Northside: Optimizing Fracture Spacing in Unconventional Oil & Gas Reservoirs

Speaker Mike Mayerhofer
Mike Mayerhofer is the Director of the Fracturing Center of Excellence at Pinnacle a Halliburton Service in Houston. He leads a team of engineers providing advanced fracture engineering solutions with special emphasis on unconventional shale and tight oil & gas plays.  His responsibilities include the application of microseismic, tiltmeter and ...

Mike Mayerhofer is the Director of the Fracturing Center of Excellence at Pinnacle a Halliburton Service in Houston. He leads a team of engineers providing advanced fracture engineering solutions with special emphasis on unconventional shale and tight oil & gas plays.  His responsibilities include the application of microseismic, tiltmeter and fiber optic hydraulic fracture mapping results for optimizing fracture completion, well placement and infill drilling strategies, the design and evaluation of hydraulic fracturing treatments, reservoir engineering, and integrated field studies.  His twenty-two year involvement with hydraulic fracturing and reservoir engineering includes fundamental research and real field applications in various global producing areas and has resulted in over 60 technical papers and journal articles.  Prior to joining Pinnacle in 1997, he worked for Union Pacific Resources in Ft. Worth.  He has a Doctorate in Petroleum Engineering from Mining University Leoben in Austria.  He was a member of the SPE Well Completions Committee from 1998 to 2001 and has served on the JPT Editorial Committee. He was the recipient of the 2009 Completions Optimization and Technology Award for the SPE Gulf Coast North America Region. 


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Full Description

Fracture stimulation and production forecasting are two important processes for conventional low-permeability or unconventional reservoirs. Fracture stimulation of either type of reservoir helps assure commercial production rates or maximize exploitation, while proper production forecasting informs the operator in advance of the potential short- and long-term value of the well and the area.

 To provide more accurate recovery forecasts for conventional low-permeability or unconventional reservoirs, one must consider the key parameters of the generated hydraulic fracture, including effective fracture length (affected by filtrate clean-up and fracture damage), relative differences in fracture and formation flow capacity (e.g., dimensionless fracture conductivity), proppant distribution, tapered fracture conductivity, and stress dependence of the fracture conductivity. In addition, stress dependence of reservoir permeabilityand reservoir fluid properties also have a major impact. Non-darcy and multiphase flow effects inside the fracture have been extensively discussed in the literature and will not be discussed in this paper but can be indirectly included when considering the discussion on reduced fracture conductivity.

 For the horizontal wellbore architecture commonly used to exploit unconventional reservoirs, the knowledge of the optimum number of fractures to maximize the recovery is very important. This paper uses a numerical reservoir simulation study to develop simple correlations that quantify what fracture spacing is necessary to optimize recovery factors in unconventional gas reservoirs and how various hydraulic fracture parameters and non-ideal reservoir behaviors affect the horizontal well completion design.

 Because the reservoir simulation process can take significant time and effort, and analytical solutions are sometimes very complex, a simple “back of the envelope” methodology to estimate the optimum fracture spacing can be advantageous for everyday use and a starting point for completion optimization. This paper also discusses how deviations from ideal behavior, in terms of fracture and reservoir properties, can affect the well design.

 

A comparison of the optimization process for oil and liquids-rich reservoirs will also be provided.
 
Organizer Matthew Strom

Office: 281-618-7848


Email: matthew_strom@swn.com

When?

Tue, Dec. 10, 2013
11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. America/Chicago

How Much?

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Where?

Greenspoint Club
16925 Northchase Dr.
Houston, Texas 77060
United States

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