Summary

This paper presents a methodology elaborated by Total EP for ranking shale plays in terms of fracability using a set of geomechanical parameters obtained from different sources including lab measurements, well log data and poromechanical earth model (PoroMEM). A sustained productivity of gas shale is strongly dependent on geomechanical parameters such as in situ stresses, shale elastic and strength properties that control the geometry of hydraulic fractures and the connectivity and hydraulic conductivity of natural fractures networks. In the proposed methodology, the term «fracability» qualifies the shale gas in terms of propensity to develop a stimulated reservoir volume (SRV) in combination with hydraulic fractures that have the desired geometry and sustainable conductivity. The geomechanical indicators characterizing the fracability include: the likelihood of reactivation of natural fracture networks, the horizontal stress contrast on one side and stress contrast in vertical plane on the other side, the ratio of unconfined compressive strength to the maximum in situ stress, the elastic stiffness matrix and its anisotropy, and the Brinell hardness. The fracability is evaluated by plotting the geomechanical indicators on a radar chart graduated between low to high SRV quality limits that are defined on the light of past Total's erience with shale gas.

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