Optimizing Fracture Stimulation Using Treatment-Well Tiltmeters and Integrated Fracture Modeling
- Michael J. Mayerhofer (Pinnacle Technologies Inc.) | H. Lloyd Stutz (Anadarko Petroleum Corp.) | Eric J. Davis (Pinnacle Technologies Inc.) | Stephen L. Wolhart (Pinnacle Technologies Inc.)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Production & Operations
- Publication Date
- May 2006
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 222 - 229
- 2006. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.8.1 Tight Gas, 3.3 Well & Reservoir Surveillance and Monitoring, 3.2.3 Hydraulic Fracturing Design, Implementation and Optimisation, 2.2.2 Perforating, 5.8.3 Coal Seam Gas, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 2.5.1 Fracture design and containment, 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control, 4.3.4 Scale, 3 Production and Well Operations, 2.5.2 Fracturing Materials (Fluids, Proppant), 1.2.3 Rock properties, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment
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This paper covers the optimization of hydraulic fracture treatments in a new coalbed methane (CBM) reservoir in Wyoming. A multiwell pilot project was conducted in the Copper Ridge (CR) field to assess future development potential. Hydraulic fracture mapping was successfully performed with treatment-well tiltmeters on six wells including the first-ever used on propped treatments. The mapped fracture height was then used to calibrate the fracture model, perform on-site fracture-design changes, and optimize future fracture treatments. This paper shows how early use of fracture diagnostics can assist in the development of a new reservoir.
CBM development continues to increase in the U.S.A. Many CBM reservoirs require hydraulic fracture stimulation to produce meaningful gas rates. Fracture diagnostics have drastically improved their capabilities over the last decade (Wright et al. 1998, 1999, 2001; Stutz et al. 2002; Cipolla and Wright 2000; Lehman et al. 2002; Mayerhofer et al. 2000; Weijers et al. 2000; Warpinski et al. 1998). They now enable real-time measurements of of how fractures actually grow. The newest technology is treatment-well tiltmeter mapping (TWTM) (Wright et al. 2001; Stutz et al. 2002), in which an array of downhole tiltmeters is lowered into the treatment well to measure fracture height and, in some cases, fracture width. Previously, these measurements were only performed during the minifrac without proppant (Wright et al. 2001; Stutz et al. 2002). In this project, TWTM was successfully peformed during the propped treatment, thus providing a significant improvement over previous "minifrac-only?? measurements. Experience has shown that fracture modeling without proper calibration from actual growth measurements and net-pressure behavior can lead to completely erroneous fracture-geometry estimates (Lehman et al. 2002; Mayerhofer et al. 2000).
The CR field, operated by Anadarko Petroleum Corp., is in southwest Wyoming, near the town of Rock Springs. Anadarko is evaluating development of the Almond coals in this field with a 16-well pilot program. The coals in the CR field are usually present as multiple 2- to 20-ft stringers, which cover 100 to 300 ft of gross section at depths of approximately 2,600 to 3,000 ft. The most prolific coal(s) are usually perforated in 20-ft intervals and fracture treated with one to two stages by use of crosslinked gel with a combination of 16/30- and 20/40-mesh sand. Underlying this section is the Ericsson sand, which is used for water disposal. Hydraulic fracturing must avoid the Ercisson sand under all circumstances. Overlying the coal sections are higher-permeability shoreface water sands, which also need to be avoided during hydraulic fracturing. Fig. 1 shows a typical log section from the field.
In this project, fracture-mapping results from several wells were integrated to build a calibrated fracture model. Fracture mapping was performed on six wells, and fracture engineering and modeling was performed on all 16 wells in the pilot program. In addition to a general assessment of how these coals treat, the objective of the study was to optimize treatment designs to (1) stay out of prolific water sands, (2) provide pay-zone coverage, and (3) create long fractures with adequate conductivity. Fracture growth was monitored in real time, and fracture volume and injection rates were adjusted on site to avoid fracturing into any water sands.
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