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Geomechanical analysis provides critical design inputs

The development of unconventional oil and gas reservoirs relies mainly on hydraulic fracturing of rock to unlock the trapped hydrocarbon and stimulate its flow to well, through created flow paths. Geomechanics plays a key role in efficient stimulation of unconventional reservoirs. From near-wellbore parameters, such as breakdown pressure and fracture initiation, to large scale effects, such as fracture propagation and interaction with natural fractures, geomechanical analyses provide critical inputs to fracture design and optimization.

Our geomechanics engineers provide technical support for our clients at every stage of reservoir stimulation planning, from design phase to execution stage, to improve stimulation efficiency and reduce costs.

Geomechanics for Hydraulic Fracturing Design

An accurate understanding of reservoir stress regime is essential to hydraulic fracturing stimulation design. Key fracture parameters, such as fracture direction, height and containment, initiation pressure, minimum required horsepower, and fracture aperture directly depend on reservoir stresses. A geomechanical analysis aimed to determine reservoir stresses and rock mechanical properties is the essential first step into an engineered fracture design.

Our geomechanics engineers have extensive experience in collaborating with completion and fracture design engineers to support stimulation design and execution. Our cutting-edge fracture simulation and geomechanical analysis tools along with our vast experience in hydraulic fracturing design and execution worldwide enables us to help our clients to reduce cost and make better business decisions.  

Geomechanics for Optimized Perforation Design and Fracturing

Fracturing of deep tight reservoirs in compressional stress environments imposes several challenges including high, and sometimes unattainable, breakdown pressures, high tortuosity, and limited or short-lasting fracture aperture and conductivity. All these factors can result in unsuccessful reservoir stimulation. Near wellbore stresses are a key factor controlling breakdown pressure and fracture initiation geometry. While conventional breakdown pressure analysis, based on hoop stresses, can be applied to open-well completions, it is not applicable to the complex state of stresses around perforations. Fit-for-purpose advanced geomechanical analyses are necessary to optimize perforation design for reduced breakdown pressure and optimized frac-to-well connectivity.

Our Unconventional Reservoir Geomechanics Services provide technical support for design and execution of hydraulic fracturing stimulation in challenging stress conditions. Our geomechanics engineers use state-of-the-art methodologies and tools, backed by worldwide experience, to help our clients improve stimulation efficiency and maximize hydrocarbon recovery.

Geomechanics for Optimized Fracture Geometry and Increased Complexity

Whether planning for transverse, oblique, or longitudinal fractures, the first step is to accurately determine the direction of reservoir stresses so the well trajectory can be designed accordingly. However, in complex stress environments, the stability of wellbore during drilling may impose some restrictions on allowable horizontal well directions. Our geomechanics engineering team provides a comprehensive solution to optimize well trajectory to meet stimulation requirements while maintaining well mechanical stability.

The efficient stimulation in unconventional or tight reservoirs greatly depends on the stimulation of natural fractures to create a complex flow path connecting the well to more trapped hydrocarbon. The key derivers for natural fracture stimulation are pressure build-up during pumping and interaction of propagating hydraulic fracture with natural fractures. Not all reservoirs are suitable candidates for natural fracture stimulation. The minimum injection pressure to stimulate natural fractures depends on the relative magnitude of reservoir stresses and the orientation of natural fractures with respect to stresses. Our Unconventional Reservoir Geomechanics Services provide full technical support ranging from reservoir-scale stress evaluation to natural fracture stimulation analysis to optimize key stimulation design parameters, such as pump schedule and stage spacing.