Williston Basin operators over the past few years have been targeting the Bakken section especially in the North Dakota area of the play. Numerous cores and well performance data have been collected and analyzed in the area. However, recent activity has been pushing the Bakken Play into northern Montana where the formation is not as well characterized. Also, operators have begun drilling pilot wells and horizontals evaluating the evolving Three Forks Play. There are also other horizontal candidates in the basin that operators are taking a look at, such as the Red River, Interlake, lower Lodgepole, Mission Canyon, Tyler, and others. Consequently, this study will focus on the Bakken Play extension, Three Forks, and all other potential liquids-rich, reservoirs that are horizontal candidates (Figure 1).
The Integrated Reservoir Solutions Division of Core Laboratories is proposing to interested companies participation in a multi-company, geo-engineering, regional study of the prospective formations in the Williston Basin. This project consists of the characterization and evaluation of numerous conventional cores and rotary sidewall cores taken from multiple wells targeting the zones of interest.
The primary objective of this project is to provide operators with measured geological, petrophysical, geomechanical, geochemical, and production properties of the prospective formations in order to improve their formation evaluation and to optimize stimulation and production. Our work suggests that understanding the similarities and differences in the section on a regional basis is the key to successful exploration and exploitation. The resultant database will be an invaluable tool to operators in evaluating, comparing, and designing completion and stimulation methods. Specifically, the project objectives are as follows: