Abstract

This paper presents a case history and lookback on the Reduced Cluster Spacing (RCS) completion design that was initiated in 2012. We review results of the initial analyses used to demonstrate proof of concept, summarize key aspects of the completion design, and discuss execution and results of the initial pilot tests and subsequent field-wide implementation. We propose a method to incorporate results of RCS models into production forecasts, and quantify the impact of RCS designs on volumes and economics over time.

We begin by presenting proof of concept analyses used to justify the initial field pilot. We then discuss RCS field trials, commenting on key aspects of project design and operational execution. We compare RCS well performance to control wells using normalized production plots, discuss type curve (TC) forecasting for RCS wells, and touch briefly on more rigorous modeling of RCS completions. We present a methodology to incorporate results from rigorous models into simpler type curves suitable for quick economic analyses and volumetric comparisons. We conclude by reviewing the economic and production impact of RCS on production at the well level and field development level.

Case histories are presented demonstrating the use of a production normalization process to assess the value of different completion designs. We demonstrate that RCS completion designs have been successful in terms of both volumes uplift and economic performance. We describe positive and negative aspects of the route taken to implement this strategy in the field. We conclude that the use of "uplift factors" derived from modeling can be used to efficiently incorporate detailed model findings into typical engineering workflows for volumes and economics forecasting. As a result of the work presented in this paper, RCS completions have become the standard in our Marcellus wells.

This lookback will present a method to effectively demonstrate proof of concept for new completion designs and assess the field implementation of novel completion strategies. This method is demonstrated by quantifying the value of reduced cluster spacing achieved in the Marcellus. We also provide a simple way to incorporate complex model results into every day engineering and economic forecasts.

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