Laboratory Testing on Proppant Transport in Complex-Fracture Systems
- Nianyin Li (Southwest Petroleum University) | Jun Li (Southwest Petroleum University) | Liqiang Zhao (Southwest Petroleum University) | Zhifeng Luo (Southwest Petroleum University) | Pingli Liu (Southwest Petroleum University) | Yujie Guo (Southwest Petroleum University)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Production & Operations
- Publication Date
- November 2017
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 382 - 391
- 2017.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Hydraulic Fracturing, Complex Fracture Systems, Proppant Transport, Laboratory Experiments
- 2 in the last 30 days
- 672 since 2007
- Show more detail
- View rights & permissions
|SPE Member Price:||USD 5.00|
|SPE Non-Member Price:||USD 35.00|
In the fields of unconventional gas and tight oil development, stimulated-reservoir-volume (SRV) fracturing is a key technology. Injecting low-viscosity sand-laden fluid at a high flow rate has the capacity to form complex-fracture networks. Therefore, placing proppant deep into these complex-fracture networks results in a conductive path for production enhancement. In addition, this technique reduces flow resistance when fluid flows from the rock matrix to the wellbore.
Currently, the sand features in low-viscosity, sand-laden, high-flow-rate fluid are not fully understood. How this type of fluid can be used for proppant transportation in subsidiary fractures is particularly unclear. This study offers a full exploration of the practical conditions of engineering. Considering the similarity criterion of geometry and velocity, this experiment features the construction of a large-scale device used for proppant placement in visualization of complex-fracture networks. The device can change fracture angles, width, and quantity. Building on the single factors experiment, this paper presents a series of tests to evaluate the transport of proppant in complex-fracture networks. A variety of slickwater-treatment tests are simulated by pumping sand slurry through the visualization-of-complex-fracture-networks device while varying parameters of perforation, fracture angles, proppant size, pump rate, and proppant concentration. As the experiment shows, treatment tests that are used with variable factors obtain different laws regarding traction-carpet features, traction-carpet areas, and balance height and time in complex-fracture networks. In addition, this paper describes a 3D physical model designed by SolidWorks (2011) grid software to make complex-fracture grids. The paper also discusses the process of simulating proppant-concentration-distribution fields in a model of complex-fracture networks. A comparison of the results between the physical and numerical models reveals that during the process of SRV, the law of proppant placement in complex-fracture networks can serve as a guideline for engineering design.
|File Size||1 MB||Number of Pages||10|
ANSYS Fluent 14.0. 2011. Canonsburg, Pennsylvania: ANSYS, Inc.
Babcock, R. E., Prokop, C. L., and Kehle, R. O. 1967. Distribution of Propping Agent in Vertical Fractures. API-67-207.
Brannon, H. D., Wood, W. D., and Wheeler, R. S. 2006. Improved Understanding of Proppant Transport Yields New Insight to the Design and Placement of Fracturing Treatments. Presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, San Antonio, Texas, 24–27 September. SPE-102758-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/102758-MS.
Clark, P. E., Harkin, M. W., Wahl, H. A. et al. 1977. Design Of A Large Vertical Prop Transport Model. Presented at the SPE Annual Fall Technical Conference and Exhibition, Denver, 9–12 October. SPE-6814-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/6814-MS.
Dayan, A., Stracener, S. M., and Clark, P. E. 2009. Proppant Transport in Slickwater Fracturing of Shale Gas Formations. Presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, New Orleans, 4–7 October. SPE-125068-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/125068-MS.
Liu, Y. and Sharma, M. M. 2005. Effect of Fracture Width and Fluid Rheology on Proppant Settling and Retardation: An Experimental Study. Presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, Dallas, 9–12 October. SPE-96208-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/96208-MS.
Malhotra, S., Lehman, E. R., and Sharma, M. M. 2013. Proppant Placement Using Alternate-Slug Fracturing. Presented at the SPE Hydraulic Fracturing Technology Conference, The Woodlands, Texas, 4–6 February. SPE-163851-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/163851-MS.
McElfresh, P. M., Wood, W. R., Williams, C. F. et al. 2002. A Study of the Friction Pressure and Proppant Transport Behavior of Surfactant-Based Gels. Presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, San Antonio, Texas, 29 September–2 October. SPE-77603-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/77603-MS.
Medlin, W. L., Sexton, J. H., and Zumwalt, G. L. 1985. Sand Transport Experiments in Thin Fluids. Presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, Las Vegas, Nevada, 22–26 September. SPE-14469-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/14469-MS.
Roodhart, L. P. 1985. Proppant Settling in Non-Newtonian Fracturing Fluids. Presented at the SPE/DOE Low Permeability Gas Reservoirs Symposium, Denver, 19–22 March. SPE-13905-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/13905-MS.
Schols, R. S. and Visser, W. 1974. Proppant Bank Buildup in a Vertical Fracture Without Fluid Loss. Presented at the SPE European Spring Meeting, Amsterdam, 29–30 May. SPE-4834-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/4834-MS.
Shah, S. N. 1993. Rheological Characterization of Hydraulic Fracturing Slurries. SPE Prod & Fac 8 (2): 123–130. SPE-22839-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/22839-PA.
Sievert, J. A., Wahl, H. A., Clark, P. E. et al. 1981. Prop Transport in a Large Vertical Model. Presented at the SPE/DOE Low Permeability Gas Reservoirs Symposium, Denver, 27–29 May. SPE-9865-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/9865-MS.
SolidWorks. 2011. Concord, Massachusetts: Dassault Syste`mes Solidworks Corp.
van der Vlis A. C., Haafkens, R., Schipper, B. A. et al. 1975. Criteria For Proppant Placement and Fracture Conductivity. Presented at the Fall Meeting of the Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME, Dallas, 28 September–1 October. SPE-5637-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/5637-MS.
Wendorff, C. L. and Alderman, E. N. 1969. Prop-Packed Fractures – A Reality On Which Productivity Increase Can Be Predicted. Presented at the SPE Rocky Mountain Regional Meeting, Denver, 26–27 May. SPE-2452-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/2452-MS.