Horizontal wells can be stimulated by the creation of a number of hydraulic fractures along the wellbore. If the welll is drilled in the direction of the minimum horizontal stress, a series of transverse hydraulic fractures will be induced. The limited communication between such transverse fractures and the wellbore creates a choking effect near the well and causes an apparent reduction in fracture conductivity. Methods to estimate the effect of the limited communication between the wellbore and the fracture based on Darcy flow of fluid in the fractures have been recently reported. Such methods, however, should not be applied to gas reservoirs since non-Darcy flow effects within the fracture may significantly influence well performance, particularly as the degree of communication between the fracture and the wellbore is reduced. This study considers the effect that non-Darcy flow within the hydraulic fractures has on horizontal well productivity in tight gas reservoirs. Well performance was simulated with semi-analytical models and by numerical simulation. The effect of fracture and reservoir properties of gas well productivity is discussed, and various development options for tight gas reservoirs are compared.

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