Abstract

Handling flow through fractured media is critical for transient pressure and flow analysis in shale gas reservoirs, because gas production from such low-permeability formations relies on fractures, from hydraulic fractures and fracture network to various-scaled natural fractures, to provide flow channels for gas flow into producing wells. This study presents a numerical investigation of pressure and flow transient analysis of gas production from a horizontal, multi-staged well in shale gas reservoirs. A specialized three-dimensional, two-phase simulator is developed and used for this purpose, which incorporates known nonlinear flow behavior in shale gas reservoirs. First we discuss a multi-domain, multi-continuum concept for handling multi-scaled heterogeneity and fractures, i.e., using hybrid modeling approaches to describe different types and scales of fractures from explicit modeling of hydraulic fractures and fracture network in simulated reservoir volume (SRV) to distributed natural fractures, microfractures, and tight matrix. Then sensitivity studies of transient pressure responses and flow rates are presented with respect to hydraulic fractures geometry, stimulated reservoir volume (SRV), and natural fracture density. We will also compare the behaviors with two different interporosity flow assumptions, fully-transient and quasisteady state flow. Unlike conventional reservoirs, their difference cannot be ignored due to the extremely low shale matrix permeability and significant gas compressibility. Specifically, we will analyze a field example from Barnett shale to demonstrate the use of results and methodology of this study.

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