With increased drilling activity associated with development of unconventional reservoirs, many operators are reporting both stimulation and production interference between wells. Interference between existing production wells (parent wells) and newly completed infill wells (child wells) is often associated with production impairment (Marongiu-Porcu et al. 2015; Ajisafe et al. 2017; Defeu et al. 2018 and Manchanda et al. 2018a). The objective of this work is to develop guidelines concerning infill wells completion scheme to minimize parent-child wells interference in a typical pad, with infill drilling in the Duvernay formation.
The area of interest selected within the Duvernay formation consists of three parent wells and two child wells. An integrated mechanical earth model (MEM) was constructed for the area using public databases. The created 3D-geological model included petrophysical and geomechanical properties along with a 2D discrete natural-fracture network representing the distribution of natural fractures in the reservoir. Hydraulic fractures in parent wells were modeled using original stress settings from the 3D-MEM. Then, a dynamic model was constructed for the three parent wells and production simulation was run for five years. Pressure distribution at the time when child wells came into production was extracted and 3D depleted stress distribution was computed using a finite element method that included the effect of pore pressure decrease and principal stress magnitude and orientation changes. Then, hydraulic fracture modeling was performed for the two child wells using the new depleted stress distribution, and finally a five-well dynamic model was created. Sensitivity analyses were performed on the hydraulic fracture parameters of the child wells with the objective of maximizing recovery by accessing more virgin reservoir area between the parent wells. Hydraulic fracture modeling followed by dynamic simulation was done in the pad for multiple cases. Fracture geometry, hydraulic/propped surface area, and fracture conductivity in child wells were extracted and analyzed against production performance of the wells.
This study shows a holistic approach in modeling the impact of completion modifications on the child wells performance in an infill drilling scenario. A 3D-geomechanical model coupled with reservoir simulation allowed simulating the propagation of hydraulic fractures in the presence of pressure depleted regions. Results confirmed that the main reason for under-performance of child wells in Duvernay is the stress change induced by the reservoir pressure depletion associated with the parent wells production hence, influencing the child wells hydraulic fractures propagation patterns.