With the growing interest in hydraulically fracturing reservoirs both in main land USA and now globally, there has been a growing need to better characterize the reservoir to maximize hydrocarbon recovery while also reducing the overall cost in the recovery of the hydrocarbon. With current fracc-ing regimes relying on a large number of stages to ensure maximum recovery, which in many cases leads to upwards of 30% of these stages being unproductive. This reduces the overall profitability of the well even with maximum hydrocarbon recovery. With the ongoing development of automated mineralogy tools, such as the RoqSCAN, there is now the ability to characterize a reservoir at the well-site in real-time and also rapidly in a laboratory.
In this paper we will review the current development of these mobile and ruggedized instruments using a real life project for Eagleridge Energy LLC, on their Burgess lateral well. The paper will show the application of automated mineralogical analysis of cuttings samples pre-drilling in defining stratigratic zones via mineralogy/elemental data. And then explore the application of the same data to assist, and in this case lead, the decision making process during directional drilling of the lateral well. The paper will also look at the use of the technology in defining tactical fracc-ing zone based on rock properties (e.g. ductility) determined from the mineralogical, elemental and textural data.
This paper will show that through the use of automated mineralogical instruments, companies can pro-actively steer wells by identifying mineral changes within lateral borehole, indicating a deviation from the target zone. Additionally, this type of technology can be used to reactively steer by its ability to rapidly identification subsurface changes, such as unknown (undetected) faults. Finally the paper will show that through the better characterization of this reservoir companies can reduce the risk associated with the drilling of expensive lateral wells.
As interest in hydraulically fractured reservoirs continues to grow globally, their characterization has become much more critical to maximizing hydrocarbon returns and developing more cost-effective fracturing regimes.
Fracturing regimes have tended to rely upon a large number of frac locations to maximize the hydrocarbon recovery from a well, but more recent work has shown that, in some cases, up to 30 per cent of the frac-ing stations have not added to well production.