The Oklahoma Woodford shale has been tested as a potential hydrocarbon producer since as early as 1955. Activity in this Devonian age shale experienced a major increase starting in 2004. Four distinct Woodford shale basins are presently being developed. This paper summarizes 5,000 completion stages performed in Arkoma, Ardmore, and Anadarko Woodford shale. Composite production averages are associated with each completion strategy, and a best-practice completion design is distilled from the available data.

There are four major Woodford basins in Oklahoma.

  • Anadarko

  • Arkoma

  • South Oklahoma Folded Belt (Ardmore)

  • Chautauqua Platform (Wagoner County)

These four basins currently include more than 1,900 wells, of which only about one-forth are vertical and the majority are horizontal completions. Very recently, we have witnessed the total Woodford monthly production of gas rising from only ~0.4 Bcf in January of 2004 to more than 27 Bcf during the month of January 2010. Most early wells were oil producers and more commonly gas has been the target of recent drillling. Even so, the average monthly oil production has grown from ~1,500 bbl in 2004 compared to ~140,000 bbl per month currently.

To date, nearly all Woodford completions have used cemented lateral sections, with only a few known exceptions, while 5.5-in., 23-lb P-110 has been the most common pipe used.

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