Experimental Study on the Effect of Injection Parameters on Proppant Transport in Rough Vertical Hydraulic Fractures

H. Huang, T. Babadagli, H. Li, K. Develi, G. Wei

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The understanding of proppant flow through fractures is critical in evaluating the hydraulic fracturing performance. As a continuation of our experimental efforts devoted to understanding how proppant flows in rough vertical fractures, in this paper, we examine the effect of injection parameters on the proppant transport in rough vertical fractures. The effects of polymer concentration, injection rate, proppant concentration, and type of proppant were investigated in detail. Experimental results show that a sufficiently high polymer concentration is needed to enable effective proppant flow in rough fractures. In general, the relative coverage of proppants increased dramatically as the polymer concentration increased, implying that the higher viscosity of fracturing fluid could enhance the slurry's ability to place more proppant vertically into the fracture and help to maintain a better conductivity after fracturing treatment. A sufficiently high injection rate of the slurry is also needed to enable effective proppant flow in rough fractures. At certain low injection rate, the proppants carried by a low polymer solution might not exhibit a tree-like settling pattern, diminishing the effect of roughness effect on the proppant transport. This means that even in rough fractures, the tree-like settling pattern of the proppants did not necessarily occur for sure; the injection rate should be properly selected to enable such phenomenon. With other condition being kept constant, a higher proppant loading led to a higher final relative coverage of the proppants in the rough fractures. But if the injection rate used for delivering the proppants is not sufficiently high, we may encounter injectivity issues; in our lab experiments, this caused the choking of the pump. The heavier proppant (ceramic proppants) in the rough fracture models tended to suppress the tree-like settling pattern that was experienced by the lighter proppant (silica sands). This is attributed to the larger density of the ceramic proppants, leading to a larger settling velocity. In order to maximize the spreading of a given proppant over a rough fracture model, we should determine the proper values of all the essential injection parameters (including polymer solution, injection rate, proppant concentration) by striking a good balance among them. The conclusions obtained in this study shed light on how to optimize slurry injection parameters to achieve an optimal proppant-filling ratio during hydraulic fracturing.

Orijinal dilİngilizce
Ana bilgisayar yayını başlığıSociety of Petroleum Engineers - SPE Western Regional Meeting 2018
YayınlayanSociety of Petroleum Engineers (SPE)
ISBN (Elektronik)9781510862425
Yayın durumuYayınlandı - 2018
EtkinlikSPE Western Regional Meeting 2018 - Garden Grove, United States
Süre: 22 Nis 201826 Nis 2018

Yayın serisi

AdıSPE Western Regional Meeting Proceedings


???event.eventtypes.event.conference???SPE Western Regional Meeting 2018
Ülke/BölgeUnited States
ŞehirGarden Grove

Bibliyografik not

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Society of Petroleum Engineers.


This research was conducted under T. Babadagli's NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Unconventional Oil Recovery (industrial partners are APEX Eng., Devon, Husky Energy, Petroleum Development Oman, Saudi Aramco, SIGNa Oilfield Canada, Total E&P Recherché Développement, BASF) and NSERC Discovery Grants (No: RES0011227 and NSERC RGPIN 05394) to T. Babadagli and H. Li, respectively. H. Huang is also grateful for the financial supports provided by National Science and Technology Major Project (No. 2016ZX05047003-004), the Shaanxi Industrial Science and Technology Research Project (No.2015GY109), the Key Laboratory Fund of Education Department of Shaanxi Province (No.15JS086) as well as the Xi'an Shiyou University for supporting his stay at the University of Alberta. We gratefully acknowledge these supports.

FinansörlerFinansör numarası
Husky Energy, Petroleum Development Oman
Key Laboratory Fund of Education Department of Shaanxi Province15JS086
Shaanxi Industrial Science and Technology Research Project2015GY109
BASFRES0011227, RGPIN 05394
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
University of Alberta
Saudi Aramco
Xi'an Shiyou University
Science and Technology Major Project of Guangxi2016ZX05047003-004

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