On the Application of the Channel-Fracturing Technique to Soft Rock Formations
- Aditya Khanna (University of Adelaide) | Andrei Kotousov (University of Adelaide) | Hao Thanh Luong (University of Adelaide)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- February 2019
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 395 - 412
- 2019.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Channel fracturing, Fracture conductivity, Proppant pack, Optimisation
- 5 in the last 30 days
- 131 since 2007
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The application of the channel-fracturing technique can result in a significant increase in the conductivity of hydraulic fractures and reduced proppant usage. In soft rock formations, the conductivity of the partially propped fractures would depend not only on the volume fraction of the open channels, but also on the elastic deformation of open channels and fracture closure resulting from proppant consolidation and embedment. In this study, an analytical approach is developed for identifying the optimal proppant column spacing that maximizes the effective conductivity. The latter parameter can guide the design of the proppant-injection schedule and well-perforation scheme. To demonstrate the approach, we conduct a parametric study under realistic field conditions and identify the folds of increase in fracture conductivity and reduction in proppant use resulting from the optimized application of the channel-fracturing technique. The outcomes of the parametric study could be particularly useful in the application of the developed approach to soft rock formations.
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