A Fracture Upscaling Method (FUM) for Hydraulically Fractured Reservoirs: from Discrete Fracture Modelling to Finite Difference Simulations

J Sherratt, A Sharifi Haddad* (Corresponding Author), R Rafati, Mehrdad T Manzari

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Hydraulic fracturing creates a complex fracture geometry in heterogeneous formations which are frequently simulated using Finite Element based fracture propagation modelling tools. Representing this geometry in Finite Difference based multiphase flow simulators poses some challenges. In this study, a Fracture Upscaling Method (FUM) is developed to represent complex fracture systems generated by the finite element method. It is demonstrated that this method can capture complex fracture geometries even when using coarse grids. This upscaling method can be used as a coupling tool between the output of any discrete fracture model and any finite difference-based reservoir simulator. FUM is tested against a field case and simulation results show a reasonable match with 120 days of production data. This method is then used to investigate the impact that natural fractures have on production from shale gas wells. The results show that the effect of orientation, spacing and length of natural fractures, on propagating hydraulic fractures can reduce the recovery factor by 30%. Furthermore, the ability of FUM to combine highly complex fracture networks with realistic multiple layer models with complex distributions of reservoir properties is demonstrated.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103611
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Natural Gas Science & Engineering
Volume83
Early online date12 Sep 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Sep 2020

Keywords

  • Hydraulic fracturing
  • Fracture patterns
  • Upscaling
  • Finite difference simulations
  • Discrete fracture models

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'A Fracture Upscaling Method (FUM) for Hydraulically Fractured Reservoirs: from Discrete Fracture Modelling to Finite Difference Simulations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this