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The role of preexisting fractures and faults during multistage hydraulic fracturing in the Bakken Formation

Yi Yang and Mark D. Zoback
The role of preexisting fractures and faults during multistage hydraulic fracturing in the Bakken Formation (in Microseismic monitoring, Jamie Rich (prefacer), Adam Baig (prefacer), Jean-Pierre Blangy (prefacer), Carlos Cabarcas (prefacer), Jingyi Chen (prefacer), Dave Diller (prefacer), Leo Eisner (prefacer) and Julie Shemeta (prefacer))
Interpretation (Tulsa) (August 2014) 2 (3): SG25-SG39


We performed an integrated study of multistage hydraulic fracture stimulation of two parallel horizontal wells in the Bakken Formation in the Williston Basin, North Dakota. There are three distinct parts of this study: development of a geomechanical model for the study area, interpretation of multiarray downhole recordings of microseismic events, and interpretation of hydraulic fracturing data in a geomechanical context. We estimated the current stress state to be characterized by an NF/SS regime, with S (sub Hmax) oriented approximately N45 degrees E. The microseismic events were recorded in six vertical observation wells during hydraulic fracturing of parallel wells X and Z with three unusual aspects. First, rather than occurring in proximity to the stages being pressurized, many of the events occurred along the length of well Y, a parallel well located between wells X and Z that had been in production for approximately 2.5 years at the time X and Z were stimulated. Second, relatively few fracturing stages were associated with an elongated cloud of events trending in the direction of S (sub Hmax) as was commonly observed during hydraulic fracturing. Instead, the microseismic events in a few stages appeared to trend approximately N75 degrees E, approximately 30 degrees from the direction of S (sub Hmax) . Earthquake focal plane mechanisms confirmed slip on faults with this orientation. Finally, the microseismic events were clustered at two distinct depths: one near the depth of the well being pressurized in the Middle Bakken Formation and the other approximately 800 ft above in the Mission Canyon Formation. We proposed that steeply dipping N75 degrees E striking faults with a combination of normal and strike-slip movement were being stimulated during hydraulic fracturing and provided conduits for pore pressure to be transmitted to the overlaying formations. We tested a simple geomechanical analysis to illustrate how this occurred in the context of the stress field, pore pressure, and depletion in the vicinity of well Y.

ISSN: 2324-8858
EISSN: 2324-8866
Serial Title: Interpretation (Tulsa)
Serial Volume: 2
Serial Issue: 3
Title: The role of preexisting fractures and faults during multistage hydraulic fracturing in the Bakken Formation
Title: Microseismic monitoring
Author(s): Yang, YiZoback, Mark D.
Author(s): Rich, Jamieprefacer
Author(s): Baig, Adamprefacer
Author(s): Blangy, Jean-Pierreprefacer
Author(s): Cabarcas, Carlosprefacer
Author(s): Chen, Jingyiprefacer
Author(s): Diller, Daveprefacer
Author(s): Eisner, Leoprefacer
Author(s): Shemeta, Julieprefacer
Affiliation: Stanford University, Department of Geophysics, Stanford, CA, United States
Affiliation: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, United States
Pages: SG25-SG39
Published: 201408
Text Language: English
Publisher: Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Tulsa, OK, United States
References: 19
Accession Number: 2015-007017
Categories: Economic geology, geology of energy sourcesApplied geophysics
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: Includes three appendices
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sects., 3 tables, sketch maps
Secondary Affiliation: ESG Solutions, CAN, CanadaHess, USA, United StatesHilcorp, USA, United StatesUniversity of Tulsa, USA, United StatesNanoSeis, USA, United StatesAcademy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, CZE, Czech RepublicMEQ Geo, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Tulsa, OK, United States
Update Code: 201504
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