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Utilizing Diagnostics to Evaluate Completion Effectiveness in the Marcellus Shale

Pechiney, J Jeff, Protechnics, Ajayi, Tunde, Seneca Resources, Cannon, Tom, Seneca Resources, Cardwell, Ron, Seneca Resources


Stimulation data obtained during a hydraulic fracture in unconventional shale gas reservoirs can be evaluated in combination with chemical tracer technology to give an indication of effectiveness of the completion operation. This paper will analyze the completion and flowback effectiveness of a Marcellus Shale well and will show how hydraulic fracture diagnostic tools such as chemical tracers, fracture pressure history matching models and statistical multiple linear regression models can be applied to describe reservoir heterogeneity and complex fracture geometry.

Tracer technology can supplement production and stimulation data to provide information as to the effectiveness of the completion design. In horizontal wells this technology has been used to evaluate flowback performance as it relates to changing lithology, wellbore trajectory and fracture geometry.

Observations from a recent well completion have shown varying degrees of flowback performance along with difficulties achieving fracturing rate and proppant placement metrics. The use of diagnostics in this case study was designed to explain how these changes translate to fracture geometry and completion effectiveness. An effective completion design is important in developing gas shales and the use of completion diagnostics would reduce the slope of the learning curve in an emerging play or else help optimize designs in developed areas.

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