High viscosity friction reducer (HVFR) as a completions fluid has been tested in many premier plays in North America, such as the Bakken, Permian and Eagle Ford basins (Van Domelen et al. 2017). Increasing popularity due to production output and operational efficiencies have led to the first trials in the developing STACK play. This paper will describe the applications, observations and results from those field trials.
Three unique case studies were identified as optimal tests for the fluid. The first includes two nearly identical offset horizontal wells in terms of landing target, location, and completion designs. The lone differing variable between the two wells was a substitution of HVFR for gel, both linear and crosslink, in the pump design. The second case describes an application in an extended-reach lateral within thinning pay to optimize economics in stressed areas. The last case includes a horizontal lateral in the geologic heart of the play with consistent well results in surrounding sections.
Over the course of the three case studies, numerous benefits of the HVFR fluid system began to emerge. Operational efficiency was the earliest success, found by both the completion engineers and foremen, from reducing chemicals on location to pump design simplicity for the operator and stimulation company. Secondly, cost savings were realized due to the decreased number of chemicals required, ability to place high sand concentrations, and flexibility to reduce chemical concentrations during the completion as experience with the fluid increased. Lastly, well flowback exhibited the potential for equal or better production using HVFR over linear and crosslinked gels, theoretically due to the higher regained conductivities found in HVFR testing.
This paper showcases the potential for a relatively new treatment fluid which delivered increased efficiencies in an emerging North American asset. The same efficiencies provided by this system can potentially be realized through applications in other basins.