• Unified Well Spacing and Completion Design for Unconventionals: A Physics and Data-Driven Approach | Walter Dobbs

    Development of unconventional plays requires an early election of horizontal well targeting and spacing.  As operators fine-tune development plans, changes to that initial framework can take years to implement due to long lead times for land, permitting, and planning.  However, hydraulic fracturing design remains a more flexible design element, representing a powerful force for optimization.

    With a combination of accessible physics-based modeling and data analysis, engineers can see through the noise of multi-variate systems to create high-confidence integrated well spacing and completion designs for frontier and mature field development and for campaigns that have been drilled but not yet stimulated.  This approach mixes long-standing reservoir engineering practices with developing ideas about how to represent the hydraulic fracturing process and response.

    A Dynamic Stimulated Reservoir Volume modeling workflow constrained against treatment, flowback, and production data enables engineers to interpret the most efficient stimulation fluid volume and forecast performance for any system.  Model predictions and field data are unified in an elegant visualization that illuminates a complex multi-well design space.  Insights about the impacts of geology and reservoir conditions highlight the potential for design customization across the play.

    In stacked plays, the application of these techniques becomes even more important.  This workflow was developed and applied extensively in the Denver-Julesburg Basin Niobrara play.  The asset team validated the approach against a 70-well field trial then used it to decipher regional performance and ultimately to post-appraise and design drilling and completion campaigns for the most efficient use of capital.

    This presentation is from the Distinguished Lecturer 2021-22 season.

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  • Unified Well Spacing and Completion Design for Unconventionals: A Physics and Data-Driven Approach | Walter Dobbs