Effect of Geological Layer Properties on Hydraulic-Fracture Initiation and Propagation: An Experimental Study
- Murtadha J. AlTammar (University of Texas at Austin) | Shivam Agrawal (University of Texas at Austin) | Mukul M. Sharma (University of Texas at Austin)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- April 2019
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 757 - 794
- 2019.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Layering, Hydraulic Fracturing, Digital Image Correlation, Fracture Kinking, Fracture Growth
- 4 in the last 30 days
- 307 since 2007
- Show more detail
- View rights & permissions
|SPE Member Price:||USD 5.00|
|SPE Non-Member Price:||USD 35.00|
Hydraulic-fracture initiation and propagation in the presence of multiple layers with different mechanical and flow properties are investigated experimentally using a novel fracturing cell. Mixtures of plaster, clay, and hydrostone are used to cast sheet-like and porous test specimens in layers with different configurations and properties. The layered specimens are hydraulically fractured under varying far-field differential stress. Fracture growth is recorded using a high-resolution digital camera. Key frames are subsequently analyzed using digital image correlation (DIC) to reveal microcracks, measure strains, and show other features such as shear-failure events that are difficult to detect with the naked eye.
The problem of a hydraulic fracture induced in a soft layer bounded by harder layers is considered. We demonstrate numerous laboratory experiments that reveal a clear tendency for induced fractures to avoid harder bounding layers. This is seen as fracture deflection or kinking away from the harder layers, fracture curving between the harder bounding layers, and fracture tilt from the maximum far-field stress direction. These observations appear to be more pronounced as the contrast in Young’s modulus and fracture toughness between the layers increases and/or the far-field differential stress decreases. Moreover, when a fracture is induced in a relatively thin layer, the fracture avoids the harder bounding layers by starting and propagating parallel to the bounding interfaces. Fracture propagation parallel to the bounding layers is also observed in relatively wide layers when the far-field stress is isotropic or very low.
A fracture approaching a dipping, harder layer tends to curve away from the hard layer by kinking toward the high side of the interface. Nonplanar fracture trajectories are observed even in homogeneous materials when the far-field differential stress is relatively low. Furthermore, various other fracture behaviors in layered specimens are demonstrated and discussed, such as fracture offsetting at material interfaces, fracture branching and complex fracture trajectories, and shear failure of weakly bonded interfaces.
|File Size||12 MB||Number of Pages||38|
Agrawal, S. and Sharma, M. M. 2018. Impact of Pore Pressure Depletion on Stress Reorientation and Its Implications on the Growth of Child Well Fractures. Presented at the SPE/AAPG/SEG Unconventional Resources Technology Conference, Houston, 23–25 July. URTEC-2875375-MS. https://doi.org/10.15530/URTEC-2018-2875375.
Agrawal, S., Ouchi, H., AlTammar, M. J. et al. 2018. Mechanistic Explanation of the Impact of Pore Pressure on Hydraulic Fracture Propagation. Presented at the 52nd US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium, Seattle, Washington, 17–20 June. ARMA-2018-1176.
Anderson, G. D. 1981. Effects of Friction on Hydraulic Fracture Growth Near Unbonded Interfaces in Rocks. SPE J. 21 (1): 21–29. SPE-8347-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/8347-PA.
Askari, E., Bobaru, F., Lehoucq, R. B. et al. 2008. Peridynamics for Multiscale Materials Modeling. J. Phys. Conf. Ser. 125 (1). https://doi.org/10.1088/1742-6596/125/1/012078.
ASTM D3967-08, Standard Test Method for Splitting Tensile Strength of Intact Rock Core Specimens. 2008. West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania: ASTM International. https://doi.org/10.1520/D3967-08.
Athavale, A. S. and Miskimins, J. L. 2008. Laboratory Hydraulic Fracturing Tests on Small Homogeneous and Laminated Blocks. Presented at the 42nd US Rock Mechanics Symposium, San Francisco, 29 June–2 June. ARMA-08-067.
Blaber, J., Adair, B., and Antoniou, A. 2015. Ncorr: Open-Source 2D Digital Image Correlation Matlab Software. Experimen. Mech. 55 (6): 1105–1122. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11340-015-0009-1.
Blanton, T. L. 1982. An Experimental Study of Interaction Between Hydraulically Induced and Pre-Existing Fractures. Presented at the SPE Unconventional Gas Recovery Symposium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 16–18 May. SPE-10847-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/10847-MS.
Cook, T. S. and Erdogan, F. 1972. Stresses in Bonded Materials With a Crack Perpendicular to the Interface. Int. J. Eng. Sci. 10 (8): 677–697. https://doi.org/10.1016/0020-7225(72)90063-8.
Cooke, M. L. and Underwood, C. A. 2001. Fracture Termination and Step-Over at Bedding Interfaces Due to Frictional Slip and Interface Opening. J. Struct. Geol. 23 (2–3): 223–238. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0191-8141(00)00092-4.
Daneshy, A. A. 1978. Hydraulic Fracture Propagation in Layered Formations. SPE J. 18 (1): 33–41. SPE-6088-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/6088-PA.
de Pater, C. J., Cleary, M. P., Quinn, T. S. et al. 1994. Experimental Verification of Dimensional Analysis for Hydraulic Fracturing. SPE Prod & Fac 9 (4): 230–238. SPE-24994-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/24994-PA.
Fisher, K. and Warpinski, N. 2012. Hydraulic-Fracture-Height Growth: Real Data. SPE Prod & Oper 27 (1): 8–19. SPE-145949-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/145949-PA.
Foster, J. T., Silling, S. A., and Chen, W. 2011. An Energy Based Failure Criterion for Use With Peridynamic States. Int. J. Multiscal. Computat. Eng. 9 (6): 675–687. https://doi.org/10.1615/IntJMultCompEng.2011002407.
Ganesan, T. P. 2000. Model Analysis of Structures. Hyderabad, India: Universities Press (India) Limited.
Garcia, X., Nagel, N., Zhang, F. et al. 2013. Revisiting Vertical Hydraulic Fracture Propagation Through Layered Formations—A Numerical Evaluation. Presented at the 47th US Rock Mechanics/Geomechanics Symposium, San Francisco, 23–26 June. ARMA-2013-203.
Gu, H. and Siebrits, E. 2008. Effect of Formation Modulus Contrast on Hydraulic Fracture Height Containment. SPE Prod & Oper 23 (2): 170–176. SPE-103822-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/103822-PA.
He, M.-Y. and Hutchinson, J. W. 1989. Crack Deflection at an Interface Between Dissimilar Elastic Materials. Int. J. Solids Struct. 25 (9): 1053–1067. https://doi.org/10.1016/0020-7683(89)90021-8.
Huang, H., Zhang, F., Callahan, P. et al. 2012. Fluid Injection Experiments in 2D Porous Media. SPE J. 17 (3): 903–911. SPE-140502-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/140502-PA.
Katiyar, A., Agrawal, S., Ouchi, H. et al. In press. A General Peridynamics Model for Multiphase Transport of Non-Newtonian Compressible Fluids in Porous Media. Computational Physics. In Preparation.
Katiyar, A., Foster, J. T., Ouchi, H. et al. 2014. A Peridynamic Formulation of Pressure Driven Convective Fluid Transport in Porous Media. J. Comput. Phys. 261 (15 March): 209–229. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcp.2013.12.039.
Mendelsohn, D. A. 1984a. A Review of Hydraulic Fracture Modeling—Part I: General Concepts, 2D Models, Motivation for 3D Modeling. J. Energy Resour. Technol. 106 (3): 369–376. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.3231067.
Mendelsohn, D. A. 1984b. A Review of Hydraulic Fracture Modeling—II: 3D Modeling and Vertical Growth in Layered Rock. J. Energy Resour. Technol. 106 (4): 543–553. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.3231121.
Ouchi, H. 2016. Development of a Peridynamics-Based Hydraulic Fracturing Model for Fracture Growth in Heterogeneous Reservoirs. PhD dissertation, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas (May 2016).
Ouchi, H., Agrawal, S., Foster, J. T. et al. 2017a. Effect of Small Scale Heterogeneity on the Growth of Hydraulic Fractures. Presented at the SPE Hydraulic Fracturing Technology Conference and Exhibition, The Woodlands, Texas, 24–26 January. SPE-184873-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/184873-MS.
Ouchi, H., Foster, J. T., and Sharma, M. M. 2017b. Effect of Reservoir Heterogeneity on the Vertical Migration of Hydraulic Fractures. J. Pet. Sci. Eng. 151 (March): 384–408. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.petrol.2016.12.034.
Ouchi, H., Katiyar, A., York, J. et al. 2015. A Fully Coupled Porous Flow and Geomechanics Model for Fluid Driven Cracks: A Peridynamics Approach. Comput. Mech. 55 (3): 561–576. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00466-015-1123-8.
Pan, B., Qian, K., Xie, H. et al. 2009. Two-Dimensional Digital Image Correlation for In-Plane Displacement and Strain Measurement: A Review. Meas. Sci. Technol. 20 (6): 062001. https://doi.org/10.1088/0957-0233/20/6/062001.
Park, N., Holder, J., and Olson, J. E. 2004. Discrete Element Modeling of Fracture Toughness Tests in Weakly Cemented Sandstone. Presented at Gulf Rocks 2004, the 6th North America Rock Mechanics Symposium: Rock Mechanics Across Borders and Disciplines, Houston, 5–9 June. ARMA-04-553.
Renshaw, C. E. and Pollard, D. D. 1995. An Experimentally Verified Criterion for Propagation Across Unbounded Frictional Interfaces in Brittle, Linear Elastic Materials. Int. J. Rock Mech. Min. 32 (3): 237–249. https://doi.org/10.1016/0148-9062(94)00037-4.
Silling, S. A. 2000. Reformulation of Elasticity Theory for Discontinuities and Long-Range Forces. J. Mech. Phys. Solids 48 (1): 175–209. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0022-5096(99)00029-0.
Silling, S. A. and Askari, E. 2005. A Meshfree Method Based on the Peridynamic Model of Solid Mechanics. Comput. Struct. 83 (17–18): 1526–1535. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compstruc.2004.11.026.
Silling, S. A., Epton, M., Weckner, O. et al. 2007. Peridynamic States and Constitutive Modeling. J. Elasticity 88 (2): 151–184. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10659-007-9125-1.
Simonson, E. R., Abou-Sayed, A. S., and Clifton, R. J. 1978. Containment of Massive Hydraulic Fractures. SPE J. 18 (1): 27–32. SPE-6089-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/6089-PA.
Smith, M. B., Bale, A. B., Britt, L. K. et al. 2001. Layered Modulus Effects on Fracture Propagation, Proppant Placement, and Fracture Modeling. Presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, New Orleans, 30 September–3 October. SPE-71654-MS. https://doi.org/10.2118/71654-MS.
Teufel, L. W. and Clark, J. A. 1984. Hydraulic Fracture Propagation in Layered Rock: Experimental Studies of Fracture Containment. SPE J. 24 (1): 19–32. SPE-9878-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/9878-PA.
Teufel, L. W. and Warpinski, N. R. 1983. In-Situ Stress Variations and Hydraulic Fracture Propagation in Layered Rock-Observations From a Mineback Experiment. Presented at the 5th ISRM Congress, Melbourne, Australia, 10–15 April. ISRM-5CONGRESS-1983-203.
Thiercelin, M., Jeffrey, R. G., and Ben Naceur, K. 1989. Influence of Fracture Toughness on the Geometry of Hydraulic Fractures. SPE Res Eng 4 (4): 435–442. SPE-16431-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/16431-PA.
van Eekelen, H. A. M. 1982. Hydraulic Fracture Geometry: Fracture Containment in Layered Formations. SPE J. 22 (3): 341–349. SPE-9261-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/9261-PA.
Vekinis, G., Ashby, M. F., and Beaumont, P. W. R. 1993. Plaster of Paris as a Model Material for Brittle Porous Solids. J. Mater. Sci. 28 (12): 3221–3227. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00354239.
Warpinski, N. R., Schmidt, R. A., and Northrop, D. A. 1982. In-Situ Stresses: The Predominant Influence on Hydraulic Fracture Containment. J Pet Technol 34 (3): 653–664. SPE-8932-PA. https://doi.org/10.2118/8932-PA.
Wu, H., Chudnovsky, A., Dudley, J. W. et al. 2004. A Map of Fracture Behavior in the Vicinity of an Interface. Presented at Gulf Rocks 2004, the 6th North America Rock Mechanics Symposium: Rock Mechanics Across Borders and Disciplines, Houston, 5–9 June. ARMA-04-620.
Zhang, X. and Jeffrey, R. G. 2008. Reinitiation or Termination of Fluid-Driven Fractures at Frictional Bedding Interfaces. J. Geophys. Res. 113 (B8): B08416. https://doi.org/10.1029/2007JB005327.