Combining horizontal drilling technology and multiple stimulation stages along the length of the borehole has allowed operators to develop many new reservoirs around the world, with the Barnett shale formation receiving the most recent notoriety. Many techniques have been offered to optimize treatment coverage across horizontal intervals, including limited entry, sliding sleeves, openhole, and coiled tubing completions. These techniques can be risky, time-consuming, and still may not ensure complete lateral coverage.
External casing perforating allows the operator to perforate and simultaneously isolate individual zones with as little as 15 minutes between treatment stages. As many as 17 discrete intervals have been successfully treated within a 24-hour period in a vertical well utilizing this technique. In the process production has been brought on-line significantly faster in a single rig-less operation without potentially damaging shut-ins.
This presentation will describe the application of the external casing perforating technique in horizontal Barnett shale wells and will compare the results with other completion methods currently being employed in that area. A significant portion of the presentation will focus on field installations and operational methodologies that are being employed to ensure the success of these completions.
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