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3D Modeling of Multistage Hydraulic Fractures and Two-Way-Coupling Geomechanics/Fluid-Flow Simulation of a Horizontal Well in the Nikanassin Tight Gas Formation, Western Canada Sedimentary Basin
- Laureano Gonzalez (University of Calgary) | Gaisoni Nasreldin (Schlumberger) | Jose A. Rivero (Schlumberger) | Pete Welsh (Schlumberger) | Roberto Aguilera (University of Calgary)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering
- Publication Date
- May 2014
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 257 - 270
- 2014.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 1.2.2 Geomechanics, 5.7.2 Recovery Factors, 5.8.1 Tight Gas, 5.5.8 History Matching, 5.6.9 Production Forecasting, 3.2.3 Hydraulic Fracturing Design, Implementation and Optimisation, 4.3.4 Scale, 2.5.4 Multistage Fracturing, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 5.1.1 Exploration, Development, Structural Geology
- coupled geomechanics, fluid flow simulation
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Unconventional gas is stored in extensive areas known as basin centered continuous-gas accumulations. Although the estimated worldwide figures differ significantly, the consensus among the studies relating to unconventional gas resources is that the volumes are gigantic. However, the low permeability in these types of reservoirs usually results in a very low recovery factor.To help unlock these resources, this paper presents a new and more accurate way of simulating multistage hydraulic fracturing in horizontal wells in three dimensions by use of single- and dual-porosity reservoir models. In this approach, the geometry (not necessarily symmetric) and orientation of the multiple hydraulic fractures are driven by the prevailing stress state in the drainage volume of the horizontal well. Once the hydraulic-fracturing job is accurately modeled in three dimensions, two-way geomechanical coupling is used to history match the produced gas from a horizontal well drilled in the Nikanassin naturally fractured tight gas formation of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin (WCSB). Traditionally, the most widely used approaches have their roots in semianalytical calculations simplifying the fracturing system to a planar feature propagating symmetrically away from a line source of injection. In contrast, the computed results presented in this study show that the incorporation of geomechanical effects gives a more realistic representation of the orientation and geometry of hydraulic fractures. Reduction in permeability of the natural and hydraulic fractures because of pressure depletion results in more-realistic production predictions compared with the case in which geomechanical effects are ignored. The telling conclusion, in light of the computed results, is that the field of hydraulic fracturing provides an object lesson in the need for coupled 3D geomechanical approaches. The method presented in this paper will help to improve gas rates and recoveries from reservoirs with permeability values in the nanodarcy scale.
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