The paper presents the experience of using downhole microseismic monitoring to determine the direction of working agent losses while maintaining formation pressure in Baitugan oil field in Orenburg region. Studies were aimed at history matching and elaboration of the further strategy for formation pressure maintenance (FPM) and field development as a whole.

The seismic monitoring method was used in the downhole version, when observations are done from the observation well located nearby the injection one. For reliable recording of weak microseismic events, high sensitivity receivers were used with 4 sensors per component. A special injection program was developed. Its first stage consisted in optimization of modes that ensure the maximum injection into formation of a fluid supplied at the wellhead.

During acquisition parameter testing, passive recording of the seismic signal was done at all stages of injection during two weeks in various modes, including a short-term stop of injection with subsequent increase in injection to a maximum injection rate with exceeding the fracture gradient. Fracture growth zones were identified below the target formation. Starting from the second week of recording, fracture propagations to the overlying formations were observed under increased injection pressure. Based on data obtained, a three-dimensional map of microseismic events recorded in the formation was created. It was used for interpretation and allowed to specify geometry of self-induced hydraulic fractures depending on injection modes.

Microseismic mapping of self-induced fractures in injection wells was done in Russia for the first time. The results of observations allow to optimize the formation pressure maintenance system through optimizing injection modes depending on local fracture gradients and injection shutting off in the zones with uncontrolled self-induced fractures that develop under minimum wellhead pressures. The obtained data also make it possible to significantly improve quality of history matching for carbonate deposits with reduced formation pressure through determining the injection efficiency. This result directly improves both the quality of forecast analysis and economic impact of formation pressure maintenance.

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