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Development of an Efficient Embedded Discrete Fracture Model for 3D Compositional Reservoir Simulation in Fractured Reservoirs
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- Ali Moinfar (University of Texas at Austin) | Abdoljalil Varavei (University of Texas at Austin) | Kamy Sepehrnoori (University of Texas at Austin) | Russell T. Johns (Pennsylvania State University)
- Document ID
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 2013. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 21 in the last 30 days
- 40 since 2007
Many naturally fractured reservoirs around the world have depletedsignificantly, and improved-oil-recovery (IOR) processes are necessary forfurther development. Hence, the modeling of fractured reservoirs has receivedincreased attention recently. Accurate modeling and simulation of naturallyfractured reservoirs (NFRs) is still challenging because of permeabilityanisotropies and contrasts. Nonphysical abstractions inherent in conventionaldual-porosity and dual-permeability models make them inadequate for solvingdifferent fluid-flow problems in fractured reservoirs. Also, recenttechnologies for discrete fracture modeling may suffer from large simulationrun times, and the industry has not used such approaches widely, even thoughthey give more-accurate representations of fractured reservoirs thandual-continuum models. We developed an embedded discrete fracture model (DFM)for an in-house compositional reservoir simulator that borrows the dual-mediumconcept from conventional dual-continuum models and also incorporates theeffect of each fracture explicitly. The model is compatible with existingfinite-difference reservoir simulators. In contrast to dual-continuum models,fractures have arbitrary orientations and can be oblique or vertical, honoringthe complexity of a typical NFR. The accuracy of the embedded DFM is confirmedby comparing the results with the fine-grid, explicit-fracture simulations fora case study including orthogonal fractures and a case with a nonalignedfracture. We also perform a grid-sensitivity study to show the convergence ofthe method as the grid is refined. Our simulations indicate that to achieveaccurate results, the embedded discrete fracture model may only requiremoderate mesh refinement around the fractures and hence offers acomputationally efficient approach. Furthermore, examples of waterflooding, gasinjection, and primary depletion are presented to demonstrate the performanceand applicability of the developed method for simulating fluid flow inNFRs.
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