Two of the most important recent developments in petroleum production are horizontal wells and high-permeability fracturing. This work combines them with potentially considerable incremental production economics. Hydraulic fractures have a distinctly defined azimuth, in almost all cases of interest; they are vertical and normal to the minimum horizontal stress direction. Horizontal wells can thus be drilled either normal or longitudinal to the fracture azimuth. The first configuration has been already considered in the literature and in practice, and is applicable for relatively low-permeability formations. The emergence of high-permeability fracturing, also apparently successful in a number of fields, often results in low dimensionless conductivity hydraulic fractures. The possibility of fracturing horizontal wells longitudinally may have the net effect of installing a high-conductivity streak in an otherwise limited conductivity flow conduit. A rigorous model was constructed to describe this configuration. This paper presents comparative production rates and cumulative productions for longitudinally fractured horizontal wells vis a vis vertical fractured wells and unfractured horizontal wells. The range of attractiveness of the individual options is presented in the framework of discounted revenues.

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