Horizontal wells and hydraulic fracturing are the key technologies that allow commercial production from tight oil and gas reservoirs. However, rigorous analysis of production data from these reservoirs requires incorporation of the impacts of stress-dependent permeability and multi-phase flow. Changes in the stress state of the system during production may reduce the absolute permeability. Furthermore, gas phase formation and flow in presence of supersaturated oil phase affects fluid dynamics in tight oil reservoirs. This study provides a rigorous methodology for incorporation of the effects of non-static permeability and multi-phase flow in rate transient analysis (RTA) of tight oil and gas reservoirs producing at variable rate/flowing pressures during transient linear flow period.

Analytical solutions for the approximate linearized form of the flow equation have been widely used as the basis for RTA tools for conventional reservoirs during transient flow period. However, they lead to considerable error when applied to tight oil and gas reservoirs. In particular, during the transient linear flow period, the slope of the square -root-of-time plot obtained from numerical solution differs from the slope calculated by analytical methods. Efforts have been made by some researchers to obtain a correction factor from the numerical solution of the flow equation to correct the slope of the square-root-of-time plot for single phase flow of gas during transient linear flow period. In this study, an iterative method is used for evaluation of the slope correction factor in the presence of multi-phase flow and non-static permeability for constant-pressure production during transient linear flow period. Further, the correction factor is used for analysis of production data from tight oil and gas reservoirs producing at variable rate/flowing pressures.

The correction factor is used in the analysis of different sets of synthetic production data for tight oil and gas reservoirs. The results show that the correction factor can reduce/eliminate the considerable errors associated with the conventional analytical methods in initial permeability estimation. For multi-phase flow cases, the producing gas -oil ratio (GOR) is used to estimate the oil saturation-pressure relationship in the reservoir, which is required for calculation pseudo-pressure and the correction factor.

The method developed in this study alleviates the need for using numerical simulation models to generate empirical correlations for the correction factor for the square -root-of-time plot. The easy-to-implement iterative procedure of this method only requires the pressure dependencies of the constituent elements of the hydraulic diffusivity. Therefore, this method is applicable for analysis of production profiles for variety of reservoirs with nonlinear flow equations.

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