Properties of a Natural Fracture and its Skins from Reservoir Well Tests
- Michael Prats (Michael Prats & Associates Inc.) | Rajagopal Raghavan (Phillips Petroleum (Ret.))
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- June 2014
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 390 - 397
- 2013.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.5.8 History Matching, 5.6.4 Drillstem/Well Testing, 5.6.5 Tracers
- Interference Tests, Pressure Tests, Horizontal Wells
- 3 in the last 30 days
- 541 since 2007
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Two well tests are described that are aimed at the in-situ determination of the flow capacity (permeability-thickness product) of a natural fracture and the flow resistance of its skins at the boundaries with the reservoir matrix. Fracture skins tend to disperse flow, thus affecting the distribution of tracers in reservoir tests and contaminants and trace elements in aquifers. We are unaware of any other analytical procedure aimed at obtaining the properties of a natural fracture and its skins from subsurface measurements. Neither well test has been implemented. The well tests are modeled after previously reported analytical expressions for the transient pressure distributions in a three-region composite reservoir in a uniform-thickness reservoir in which (1) the natural fracture is represented by a thin middle region of relatively high permeability, (2) the pressure disturbance is caused by producing from a short interval in one of the outer regions, and (3) the response is measured relatively near the fracture. The source and sensor may be on the same side or on opposite sides of the fracture, distinguishing the two tests. Visualizing special completions in a horizontal well intersecting a natural fracture normally, pressure responses are given for both tests for a wide range of fracture/matrix permeability ratios and skin flow resistances for a source 190 ft from the fracture and 10 ft from the sensor and on either side of the fracture, both at the midplane of the reservoir. A simple graphical procedure, not intended to replace history matching or regression where field data are available, illustrates how the two unknowns--permeability-thickness product of a natural fracture and the flow resistance of its skins--may be estimated from two representative values of an assumed measured pressure response.
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