Achieving more optimum, cost-effective recovery from unconventional reservoirs—particularly at a time when independents are cautious about these investments—begins with an in-depth analysis of subsurface conditions. These conditions, which are critical inputs for frac design and production planning, are characterized by such data as:
- formation lithology, porosity, permeability, modulus, compressibility data from core samples and drilling logs; and
- wellbore completion, reservoir pressure, and in-situ stress from well logs and tests.
Each dataset has inherent value to the geologist, geophysicist, drilling engineer, or reservoir engineer.
These datasets attain even greater value and relevance when combined to enable a simultaneous, collaborative analysis of non-conventional reservoirs. Combined, these data can show asset teams how to improve hydraulic fracturing during a reservoir’s development and production phases.
Integrate and Visualize Subsurface Datasets
Therein lies the challenge—integrating these data to visualize and analyze relationships within a geospatial model to optimize effective stimulated volume and deliver maximum production performance.
CoViz 4D from Dynamic Graphics, Inc. addresses the need for easy integration of a wide range of subsurface data and their formats. It provides a collaborative environment for dynamic visual analysis by asset teams, facilitating the in-depth exploration of data, clarification of assumptions, and development of better frac design and engineering methods. CoViz 4D brings clarity in helping engineers answer the question “how do we improve our hydraulic fracturing process?”
Integrated data visualization and analysis capabilities allow engineers to understand reservoir characteristics and evaluate reservoir potential. Based on that analysis, engineers can then develop the frac design that yields enhanced early production results to better optimize economic return. CoViz 4D enables engineers to explore correlations among subsurface data in order to:
- Verify the extent of rock to be affected in the proposed well plan.
- Assess any geologic risks and proposing appropriate mitigation strategies.
- Conduct multiple sensitivity runs using reservoir and propagation models to account for uncertainties such as estimates of formation permeability and drainage area at the early development stage.
- Determine fracture length and conductivity based on reservoir simulation models.
- Analyze the effect of fracture length and conductivity on reservoir productivity and ultimate recovery.
- Specify more informed fracture treatments based on rock strata, in-situ stress profile, formation permeability and modulus, fracture-fluid viscosity, fluid-loss characteristics, and injection rates.
- Develop hydraulic fracture propagation models that guide the selection of appropriate proppant to achieve optimum fracture length and fracture conductivity.
- Using data obtained via borehole microseismic temperature, tiltmeter mapping or tracer surveys, assess the post-fracture stimulation to determine the extent of hydraulic fractures and the stimulated reservoir volume.
Detailed understanding of these factors and collaborative analysis by different disciplines leads to far better decisions in determining how to volumetrically maximize frac extent and improve operational consistency in hydraulic fracturing.
Integrated data visualization and analysis capabilities allow engineers to understand reservoir characteristics and evaluate reservoir potential.
Additional geologic and performance data obtained from a horizontal well are easily incorporated into the property model for ongoing analysis. CoViz easily incorporates 4D seismic surveys, fluid production data, updated reservoir simulations, and geologic models that reflect evolving reservoir conditions. With this new information, engineers can evaluate current reservoir performance and decide how to further optimize the hydraulic fracturing process.
- Use microseismic data to determine the extent of individual fracks within the target reservoir, their positions relative to the wellbore, and their effect on well production.
- Present hydraulic fracturing data in conjunction with acoustic data, fault geometries, stratigraphy, and statistical plots of quantitative datasets to assess reservoir performance and plan enhancements.
- Update sensitivity runs with new/updated data to reduce uncertainties and determine their effect on created and propped fracture dimensions.
- Plan the optimum wellpath and spacing for additional wellbores to maximize hydrocarbon recovery between adjacent wells.
CoViz 4D can easily incorporate the latest geologic and operational data, visualize it, and analyze it, enabling engineers to closely monitor non-conventional reservoir performance and determine how to continually improve hydraulic fracturing techniques to further enhance recovery.
How to Improve Hydraulic Fracturing With CoViz 4D
Economic pressures to efficiently recover hydrocarbons from non-conventional wells drive asset teams to constantly improve their hydraulic fracturing methods. Nothing is more powerful in determining the best strategies and methods for optimizing hydraulic fracturing than the ability for reservoir and production engineers to have detailed and comprehensive data that presents the evolving conditions within non-conventional hydrocarbon assets. The wealth of geophysical and operational data now available, when integrated, visualized, and analyzed can show asset teams how to improve hydraulic fracturing techniques across all phases of a reservoir’s life.