Abstract

The field under study is witnessing an increasing trend in NPT events while drilling vertical wells through high stressed shale formations and the underlying depleted sandstone reservoir in the same section. The field has multiple sets of faults with lateral variations in stress azimuth and completion quality with the regional strike-slip regime. High angled wells are being planned to increase reservoir coverage and perform hydro fracturing. This paper provides details of capturing stress regime variation along with the effects of depletion in offset wells and identify suitable azimuth of planned well with drilling risks through a 3D geomechanical study. Comprehensive 1D mechanical earth models are constructed using open hole logs, core data and available hydro-fracturing results for wells in the field. Rock mechanical properties have been calibrated at well scale as per core data. Poro-elastic horizontal strain method at well scale indicates a strike-slip to reverse fault variation with significant horizontal stress anisotropy as evident from the closure pressure range of 9,500 psi to 12,500 psi. 3D numerical geomechanical model has been constructed considering structural discontinuities, rock mechanical properties and formation pressure to estimate the principal stresses. Stress direction data from dipole sonic measurements and breakout azimuth from borehole image logs are used for calibration in 3D model incorporating faults. Stress path for depletion has been estimated. Results from the study suggested change in casing policy specifically to have a liner isolating the overburden formations where more than 800 m should be drilled prior to entering the depleted reservoir formation. 3D geomechanical analysis reckons that the mud weight should be in the range of 12.7 kPa/m to 13.1 kPa/m during building up the well profile at 80 deg inclination in overlying shale while 1D study suggesting a range of 13.2 kPa/m to 13.7 kPa/m. Along well path at 80deg to 90deg deviation within reservoir layer toward minimum horizontal stress azimuth, mud weight requirement was found to be much lower at 11.5 kPa/m to 12.1 kPa/m. Apart from mud weight, BHA and chemicals were optimized to avoid differential sticking and better hole cleaning for respective sections. Actual mud weight used was in the range of 12.8 kPa/m to 13.1 kPa/m for building up with no torque and drag issue while running liner and BHA trips. Mud weight was maintained in the range of 11.5 kPa/m to 11.8 kPa/m in the horizontal section with minimum breakouts and smoother hole condition. Cuttings shape and size analysis were performed regularly to check well behavior and manage downhole pressure higher than shear failure limit. Using 3D Geomechanical study and continuous monitoring of drilling parameters in near real-time, the buildup and reservoir sections have been drilled within schedule with no major NPT event and saved at least one week of rig days.

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