Quantitative determination of hydraulic properties of fractured rock using seismic techniques
Published:January 01, 2005
Enru Liu, Mark Chapman, John A. Hudson, Simon R. Tod, Sonja Maultzsch, Xiang-Yangi Li, 2005. "Quantitative determination of hydraulic properties of fractured rock using seismic techniques", Understanding the Micro to Macro Behaviour of Rock–Fluid Systems, R. P. Shaw
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There have been significant advances over the last ten years in the use of the seismic anisotropy concept to characterize subsurface fracture systems. Measurements of seismic anisotropy are now used to deduce quantitative information about the fracture orientation and the spatial distribution of fracture intensity. Analysis of the data is based upon various equivalent medium theories that describe the elastic response of a rock containing cracks or fractures in the long wavelength limit. Conventional models assume scale/frequency independence and hence cannot distinguish between micro-cracks and macrofractures. The latter, however, control the fluid flow in many oil/gas reservoirs, as the fracture size and spacing (hence fracture storability) are essential parameters for reservoir engineers. Recently, a new equivalent medium theory for modelling of wave propagation in media with multi-scale fractures has been presented. The model predicts velocity dispersion and attenuation due to a squirt-flow mechanism at two different scales: the grain scale (micro-cracks and equant matrix porosity) and formation-scale fractures. Application of this model to field data shows that fracture density and fracture size can be inverted successfully from the frequency dependence of the time delay between split shear waves. The derived fracture length matches independent observations from borehole data. This paper presents the results of the latest development in the seismic characterization of natural fractures, with an emphasis on the quantitative determination of fracture sizes.
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Understanding the Micro to Macro Behaviour of Rock–Fluid Systems
Understanding how fluids flow through though rocks is very important in a number of fields. Almost all of the world's oil and gas are produced from underground reservoirs. Knowledge of how they got where they are, what keeps them there and how they migrate through the rock is very important in the search for new resources, as well as for maximising the extraction of as much of the contained oil/gas as possible. Similar understanding is important for managing groundwater resources and for predicting how hazardous or radioactive waste or carbon dioxide will behave if stored or disposed of underground. Unravelling the complex behaviour of fluids as they flow through rock is difficult, but important. We cannot see through rock, so we need to predict how and where fluids flow. Understanding the type of rock, its porosity, the character and pattern of fractures within it and how fluids flows through it are important. Some contributors to this volume have been trying to understand real rocks in real situations and others have been working on computer models and laboratory simulations. Put together, these approaches have yielded very useful results, many of which are discussed in this volume.