Deploying Multi-Stage Completion Technology in HPHT Applications
- Robert Oberhofer (Packers Plus Energy Services)
- Document ID
- International Petroleum Technology Conference
- International Petroleum Technology Conference, 15-17 November, Bangkok, Thailand
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2011. International Petroleum Technology Conference
- 1.6.6 Directional Drilling, 1.14 Casing and Cementing, 2 Well Completion, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 5.8.2 Shale Gas, 2.5.4 Multistage Fracturing, 2.5.2 Fracturing Materials (Fluids, Proppant), 1.6 Drilling Operations, 5.8.7 Carbonate Reservoir, 5.8.1 Tight Gas
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Over the last several years open hole, multi-stage fracturing systems (OHMS) have proven to be an effective and efficient completion technology in many unconventional reservoirs. To date, OHMS completion technology has been limited to a maximum differential pressure of 68.9 MPa (10,000 psi) while performing the fracture stimulation treatment. As the industry targets deeper formations while drilling longer horizontal laterals, some wells now require treatment pressures higher than 68.9 MPa (10,000 psi) to perform the desired stimulation and realize the added production potential OHMS technology offers. As a result, there is a need for OHMS completion tools capable of handling very high pressure/high temperature (HPHT) conditions.
The challenge in creating HPHT completion tools is in the material requirements. Considerations must be made regarding how to ensure integrity of the seal between the liner and the annulus, the gripping capability of the packer elements, and the ability of the materials to withstand the downhole conditions. HPHT OHMS tools were designed and manufactured with improved metal alloy and premium seal technology. The basic design and function of this HPHT system is the same as the standard OHMS; therefore, the HPHT tools build on the field-proven technology.
Case study wells are presented in a recently developed, deep shale gas formation just east of the Rocky Mountains with highly overpressured downhole conditions. This, combined with a high fracture gradient, resulted in sub-optimal fracture initiation with the standard OHMS. By employing the HPHT OHMS, higher treating pressures were achieved with successful treatment results. Using this technology, several additional wells have been completed in the same geographical field and implemented in other HPHT applications.
Over the last five years (2007 - 2011), more than 5,000 horizontal wellbores have been completed using OHMS in unconventional shales, tight sandstones and tight carbonate reservoirs in Western Canada. In addition to providing time and cost reductions, OHMS completions have realized production benefits compared to conventional completion methods because they allow contribution from natural fractures and the open hole lateral (Snyder and Seale, 2011; Edwards et al., 2010; Houston et al., 2010; Lohoefer et al., 2010; Lohoefer et al., 2010b; Samuelson et al., 2008).
OHMS fracturing method. With the advancement of horizontal drilling and completion practices in recent years, many wells are now drilled horizontally with the intention to fracture stimulate multiple intervals. A very common technique has been to complete the well with a multi-stage fracturing system that is installed on a liner in the open hole without cementing the horizontal (Seale et al., 2006; Seale, 2007) (Fig. 1).
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