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Case Studies

Tight Oil Play Waterflood Pilot Study

An operator in the Lower Shaunavon required expert support to determine the optimal development strategy for a tight oil field through infill drilling and water injection conversions. Although there were some early vertical wells, the tight oil reservoir had been mainly developed with multi-stage fractured horizontal wells due to the low permeability nature of the field.

Project Highlights

  • Required optimal field development strategy
  • Hydraulic fractures successfully modelled
  • Water injection caused hydraulic fractures to propagate further
  • Client provided with multiple options for optimizing their field

Challenge

  • The client required help to determine the optimal development strategy for a tight oil field through infill drilling and water injection conversions
  • The Lower Shaunavon is a carbonate formation containing a medium viscosity reservoir oil
  • Although there were some early vertical wells, the tight oil reservoir had been mainly developed with multi-stage fractured horizontal wells due to the low permeability nature of the field

Solution

  • A geological model of the Lower Shaunavon was developed and a nine-section pilot region was exported for use in a simulation model
  • Local grid refinement was used to model the hydraulic fractures, and the model was calibrated to match performance data
  • An interesting finding of the study was that the hydraulic fractures at injectors propagated further into the reservoir during injection; this phenomenon was successfully modelled by using a dual porosity/dual permeability approach

Value

  • Production profiles and recovery factors were determined through performance forecasting, and the optimal field development strategy was determined
Richard Holst, P.Eng.
Manager, Engineering

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