Depletion effects occurs in unconventional reservoirs when the hydraulic fractured wells are completed within the drainage volume of existing producers. Field production and monitoring data show that the existing (parent) wells negatively affect the new (child) wells' productivity, making the new wells produce less than if all the wells are drilled and produced at the same time. This paper presents a systematic study on quantifying the offset well depletion effect in the Permian basin through advanced reservoir modeling and data analytics from field pilots.

The workflow starts with building an Earth model for parent wells in the area of interest, generating a hydraulic fracture network, and performing reservoir simulation for production forecast. The depletion effect, including changes in geomechanical properties on child wells, is properly updated in the Earth model and further captured through fracture geometry distortion and production decrease in the depleted environment. The results from the simulation models are further validated with actual field data. Simulations and pilot studies in both Midland and Delaware basins demonstrate that offset well depletion effect can have significant impact on production performance.

The ability to quantify depletion effect has significant business impacts on development sequence, facility design, completion design, and overall project economics. Analysis on various development scenarios was performed to evaluate the economic impact of depletion effect and determine how to mitigate this effect. Net present value (NPV) economic analysis of different simulation results indicates that time duration of production in the parent well ahead of child well has more impact on depletion effect than the distances between parent and child wells. As examples, depletion quantifications are applied to optimize well production near lease boundary with parent well depletion on the competitor land and guide section development strategy by evaluating pad sequence scenarios.

You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.