Fractured-Reservoir Modeling and Interpretation
- Fikri Kuchuk (Schlumberger) | Denis Biryukov (Schlumberger) | Tony Fitzpatrick (Schlumberger)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- October 2015
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 983 - 1,004
- 2015.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Naturally fractured reservoirs , dual-porosity type models , Interpretation of fractured reservoirs , Pressure transiet behavior
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- 1,147 since 2007
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Fractures are common features of many well-known reservoirs. Naturally fractured reservoirs (NFRs) consist of fractures in igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks (matrix). Faults in many naturally fractured carbonate reservoirs often have high-permeability zones and are connected to numerous fractures with varying conductivities. In many NFRs, faults and fractures frequently have discrete distributions rather than connected-fracture networks. Because faulting often creates fractures, faults and fractures should be modeled together. Accurately modeling NFR pressure-transient behavior is important in hydrogeology, the earth sciences, and petroleum engineering, including groundwater contamination to shale gas and oil reservoirs. For more than 50 years, conventional dual-porosity-type models, which do not include any fractures, have been used for modeling fluid flow in NFRs and aquifers. They have been continuously modified to add unphysical matrix-block properties such as matrix skin factor.
In general, fractured reservoirs are heterogeneous at different length scales. It is clear that even with millions of gridblocks, numerical models may bot be capable of accurately simulating the pressure-transient behavior of continuously and discretely NFRs containing variable-conductivity fractures. The conventional dual-porosity-type models are obviously an oversimplification; their serious limitations for interpreting well-test data from NFRs are discussed in detail. These models do not include wellbore-intersecting fractures, even though they dominate the pressure behavior of NFRs for a considerable length of testing time. Fracture conductivities of unity to infinity dominate transient behavior of both continuously and discretely fractured reservoirs, but again, dial-porosity models do not contain any fractures. Our fractured-reservoir model is capable of treating thousands of fractures that are periodically or arbitrarily distributed with finite and/or infinite conductivities, different lengths, densities, and orientations.
Appropriate inner-boundary conditions are used to account for wellbore-intersecting fractures and direct wellbore contributions to production. Wellbore-storage and skin effects in bounded and unbounded systems are included in the model. Three types of damaged-skin factors that may exist in wellbore-intersecting fracture(s) are specified. With this highly accurate model, the pressure-transient behavior of conventional dual-porosity-type models are investigated, and their limitations and range of applicability are identified. The behavior of the triple-porosity models is also investigated. It is very unlikely that triple-porosity behavior is caused by the local variability of matrix properties at the microscopic level. Rather, it is caused by the spatial variability of conductivity, length, density, and orientation of the fracture distributions. Finally, we have presented an interpretation of a field-buildup-test example from an NFR by use of both conventional dual-porosity models and our fractured-reservoir model.
A substantial part of this paper is a review and discussion of the earlier work on NFRs, including the authors' work.
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