Reliable estimates of hydraulic fracture geometry help reduce the uncertainty associated with estimated ultimate recovery (EUR) forecasts and optimize field developing planning in unconventional reservoirs. For these reasons, operators gather information from different sources with the objective to calibrate their hydraulic fracture models. Microseismic data is commonly acquired by operators to estimate hydraulic fracture geometry and to optimize well completion designs. However, relying solely on estimates derived from microseismic information may lead to inaccurate estimates of hydraulic fracture geometry.

The objective of this study is to efficiently calibrate hydraulic fracture geometry by using microseismic data, physics-based fracture propagation models, and the embedded discrete fracture model (EDFM). We first obtain preliminary estimates of fracture geometry based on microseismic events’ spatial location and density with respect to the perforation cluster location. We then tune key completion parameters using an in-house fracture propagation model to provide hydraulic fracture geometries that are constrained by the microseismic cloud. In the history matching process, we included the effect of natural fractures, using the microseismic events location as natural fracture initiation points. Finally, we used cutoff coefficients to further reduce hydraulic fracture geometries to match production data.

The results of this work showed a fast and flexible method to estimate fracture half-lengths and fracture heights, resulting in a direct indicator of the completion design. Additionally, hydraulic-natural fracture interactions were assessed. We concluded that the inclusion of cutoff coefficients as history matching parameters allows to derive realistic hydraulic and natural fracture models calibrated with microseismic and production data in unconventional reservoirs.

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