TOPICS OF INTEREST
TIGHT GAS/SHALE GAS/COALBED METHANE
Water, Water Everywhere: Using ML and Game Theory To Win at Produced-Water Forecasting
Advanced machine-learning methods combined with aspects of game theory are helping operators understand the drivers of water production and improve forecasting and economics in unconventional basins.
Saudi Aramco Announces Two New Fields, One Is Unconventional
The national oil company’s remote northern region has delivered a pair of greenfields that await further drilling before a reserves estimate can be made.
After 4 Years, Range Resources Exits Louisiana Tight-Gas Play
The Pennsylvania-based producer will leave Louisiana where profiting from tight-gas fields has proven difficult and focus on its legacy assets in the Marcellus Shale.
Cased-Hole Solution Assesses Tight Reservoirs
The complete paper presents a solution that assesses tight matrices and natural fractures at a level not previously achieved. At the tight-matrix level, advanced nuclear spectroscopy is carried out with a new pulsed-neutron device that achieves simultaneous time- and energy-domain measurements.
Australia Presents Opportunity for E&P Companies Looking Beyond US Unconventionals
Black Mountain executives outlined the key criteria they used to determine why Western Australia was a prime location for private-equity investment when looking at international unconventional plays.
Unconventionals at a Crossroads: Where Do We Go From Here?
URTeC 2020’s opening plenary session panel shared insights into how the shale industry can scale technology, fiscal restraint, and social responsibility into a sustainable business case for a new energy landscape.
Learnings Applied to Reservoir Simulation of Unconventional Plays
In the complete paper, the authors revisit fundamental concepts of reservoir simulation in unconventional reservoirs and summarize several examples that form part of an archive of lessons learned.
Succeeding in the New Pressure Pumping Environment
New report offers guidelines for pressure pumpers of the future.
Australia Study Finds Few Environmental Effects From Hydraulic Fracturing in Coal Seams
A 3-year study of air quality, soils, groundwater, and waterways found few to no effects as a result of hydraulic fracturing operations in Surat Basin coal seam formations.
How An Oil Price Crash Can Be a Good Thing
Not everybody suffers when US oil producers slash production. Among the beneficiaries could be US gas producers who will benefit because less oil production will mean a lot less gas on the US market.
Prescriptive Analytics Aids Completion Optimization in Unconventionals
This paper discusses a prescriptive analytics framework to optimize completions in the Permian Basin.
Subsurface Compression Lifts Liquids, Increases Gas Production in Unconventional Well Trial
A downhole compressor solution based on advanced magnetic technologies completed its first field trials in an unconventional gas well. It resulted in a 62% increase in gas production and significant increase in liquid production compared to using a rod pump previously in the well
New Modeling and Simulation Techniques Optimize Completion Design and Well Spacing
Proper lateral and vertical well spacing is critical for efficient development of unconventional reservoirs. Much research has focused on lateral well spacing but little on vertical spacing, which is challenging for stacked-bench plays such as the Permian Basin.
E&P Spending Cuts Spur Requests for Reduced OFS Fees
The shale industry could shoulder 65% of $100-billion 2020 global E&P spending cut. Can oilfield services providers afford to cut their fees further to prop up hard-hit operators?
Saudi Aramco Set To Make $110-Billion Investment in Tight Gas
The first of three major unconventional developments in Saudi Arabia has been given the green light. The project will underpin the country's goal to become a top gas exporter by 2030.
Capacitance-Resistance Model Used for Integrated Detection of Water Production
The objective of this study is to show how the capacitance-resistance model (CRM) was used on this field and how it validated the use of other independent methods. This paper demonstrates that integration of different sources of data in reservoir management is critical.
Rystad Warns of Gloomy Start to 2020 for Oilfield Service Firms
Reduced investment in US shale will continue to weigh down the global oilfield services market through 2020.
Devon Sells Barnett Asset to Thai Venture Firm for $770 Million
Devon exits the asset that served as the company’s cornerstone for almost two decades and is known to the world as the birthplace of the shale revolution.
US Sets New Records for Proved Oil and Gas Reserves
Proved oil reserves totaled 43.8 billion bbl at yearend 2018 while proved gas reserves amounted to 504.5 Tcf, both topping records set in 2017, the US Energy Information Administration said.
Enverus Forecasts “Significant Slowdown” in US Gas Output Growth in 2020
The data analytics firm projects US dry gas output growth will shrink to 2 Bcf/D next year from 8–9 Bcf/D in 2018 and 2019.
SPE Talks To: Andrew Pepper
Fluid saturation isn't what it used to be when it comes to unconventional reservoirs. Our guest is among those sharing new research to discuss the shale sector’s changing perspectives on the importance of mobile hydrocarbons vs. immobile hydrocarbons.
Led By the Permian, US Flaring and Associated Gas Production Hit New Highs
The volume of flared gas in the US unconventional sector is now 12% of the country’s total gas production. A pair of new reports say that Permian Basin operators account for much of the growth.
Britain Imposes Moratorium on Hydraulic Fracturing
The decision comes 2 months after UK shale operator Cuadrilla Resources halted stimulation work at its Preston New Road site in Lancashire because of a magnitude 2.9 seismic event.
Water-Based Drilling Fluid Using Nanoparticles Proves Effective in Unconventional Shales
This study focus on the design and evaluation of a customized water-based mud (NP-WBM) using silica oxide nanoparticles (SiO2-NPs) and graphene oxide nanoplatelets (GNPs).
Feasibility of Using Small-Scale GTL Plants To Mitigate Flaring in North Dakota Evaluated
The summer of 2019 has been rife with media reports about negative gas pricing in the Permian and, given the propensity of our industry to pick a favorite horse and then all pile on it at the same time, it is not surprising when we create our own boom and bust cycles.
USGS: Appalachian Formations Hold Estimated 214 Tcf of Gas
The new numbers for the Marcellus Shale and Point Pleasant-Utica Shale represent large increases from previous USGS assessments of both formations.
2020 SPE President Promises to Focus on Strengthening Organization’s Engineering Core
Speaking on the final day of ATCE 2019 in her home province of Alberta, Shauna Noonan unveiled the theme of her 2020 SPE presidency, “SPE Strong: Strengthen the Core.”
Aggressive Stimulation Design Yields Better Returns
The authors examine methods of adopting an aggressive approach to optimizing stimulation design to lower the break-even level of operations and evaluate the results.
Optimization Work Flow Maximizes Value of Unconventional Fields
Well spacing optimization is one of the more important considerations in unconventional field development.
Industry Struggles With Enhanced Recovery for Unconventional Reservoirs
This paper reviews the IOR/EOR technologies currently being applied to unconventional oil reservoirs.
Chemical Tracer Flowback Data Help Understanding of Fluid Distribution
This paper presents a data set involving the pumping of multiple, unique chemical tracers into a single Wolfcamp B fracture stage.
Considering Time and Space in Drilling and Completion Can Reduce Well Interference
The complete paper describes a physics-based model of interference and a sensitivity study to propose guidelines for well spacing and a drilling timeline for multiple horizontal wells in the Vaca Muerta shale.
Study Finds Fort Worth Basin Wastewater Injection Increases Fault-Slip Potential
Researchers mapped 251 faults in the North Texas home of the Barnett Shale, the birthplace of the shale revolution, finding that wastewater injection there “significantly increases the likelihood for faults to slip.”
Shale Producers Piloting Downhole Compression To Solve Liquid Loading
Using maglev technology, a new artificial lift system seeks to boost production output by sucking down reservoir pressure from inside the wellbore and from inside the reservoir.
US Onshore Drilling Decline to Continue, Rig Contractors Say
Leaders from two large US onshore rig contractors said their expectations that the rig-count slide would hit a second-quarter bottom were off and are now refraining from making new predictions as to when it will end.
Santos To Resume Shale Drilling in Australia’s Northern Territory
The green light for Santos Energy’s drilling program in the McArthur Basin comes after a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in the Northern Territory was lifted in 2018.
Engineers Get a Look at Oilfield Advances at URTeC While Grappling With the Pressing Problem of Profitability
The Unconventional Resources Technology Conference is like visiting an oilfield theme park for engineers and geoscientists. This year those traveling to the conference for a glimpse of what is possible in exploration and production will also focus on ways to improve short-term profitability.
Cuadrilla to Fracture Second Well in UK Bowland Shale
The UK shale operator will move forward with fracturing and testing its second well at its Lancashire site despite strict constraints on induced seismicity that hampered fracturing work on its first well.
US DOE To Fund 12 R&D Projects To Boost Unconventional Characterization, Recovery
Twelve organizations—universities and private technology companies—will conduct research and development on emerging shale plays and technologies covering everything from digital pressure-sensing to smart microchip proppant.
Comstock Resources to Buy Covey Park, Triple Haynesville-Bossier Position
The combination will create one of the Haynesville Shale’s top gas producers, tripling Comstock’s Haynesville-Bossier acreage.
Exploring the Innovative Evolution of Hydraulic Fracturing
The evolution of hydraulic fracturing is a long and circuitous one that deserves examination. Engineering and completions leaders from Liberty Oilfield Services did just that, authoring a paper that encapsulates the high points in the development of the groundbreaking completions practice.
Factory-Model Approach Improves Performance of Coiled-Tubing Drillout
This paper presents a factory-model approach to improving CT drillout performance that has been used successfully for more than 3 years and has become standard practice.
In-Line Quench-and-Temper Technology Applied to CT Improves Safety and Reliability
This paper discusses the advantages of the in-line quench-and-temper (Q&T) process, which enhances overall CT life and reliability by producing tubing with more-uniform microstructure throughout its entire length, increased material strength, and improved bend-fatigue performance.
Computational Model Predicts Breakdown Pressures in Unconventional Plays
This paper presents a newly developed model to predict the breakdown pressures in cased and perforated wells.
Operator Executives Share Haynesville Development Strategies
Indigo Natural Resources, Aethon Energy, and Rockcliff Energy are among the most active operators in the revived Haynesville Shale of North Louisiana and East Texas. And most people outside of the region likely have never heard of them.
Machine Learning Optimizes Duvernay Shale-Well Performance
This paper discusses how machine learning by use of multiple linear regression and a neural network was used to optimize completions and well designs in the Duvernay shale.
New Operators, Well Designs Drive Record Gas Production in Haynesville
After a long cooling off period, this dry-gas shale play is once again red hot.
Gas Lift Operations Require Accurate Predictions of Downhole Annulus Pressure
Downhole annulus pressure is required for any gas lift design. This paper presents several methods of determining annulus pressure at depth and helps determine which method is most appropriate for specific conditions.
EIA Adds New Plays to Shale Gas, Tight Oil Reports
The agency updated its methodology and production volume estimates to factor increasing production from new, emerging plays as well as older plays that have rebounded thanks to drilling advancements.
UK Shale Flow Test Positive, But No Regulatory Relief in Sight
UK’s first horizontal shale well has yielded positive results after an initial flow test. But further testing—and fracturing of a second well—will have to come amid a continuation of UK’s stringent regulations on induced seismicity.
China Flexes Shale Muscles as CNPC Ups Gas Output 40%
The country continues to step up its delivery of shale gas, but has a long ways to go to meet the government's target.
Viability of Gas-Injection EOR in Eagle Ford Shale Reservoirs
This paper studies the technical and economic viability of this EOR technique in Eagle Ford shale reservoirs using natural gas injection, generally after some period of primary depletion, typically through long, hydraulically fractured horizontal-reach wells.
How Does Vaca Muerta Stack Up vs. US Shale? Data Tell the Tale
Vaca Muerta production is on the upswing. Will increasing activity propel the Argentine play to the ranks of US shale? Data suggest it is both already there and has a ways to go.
Led by Frac, The Oilfield Services Space Could Get Interesting in 2019
Slumping oil prices may throw a wrench into a positive outlook for the global oilfield services and equipment industry. Even if prices rebound, complications in the US fracturing market—and elsewhere—are expected to persist.
US Oil, Gas Reserves Hit All-Time Highs
Proved oil and gas reserves in the US have spiked to levels not seen before, the EIA reports, and one of the main drivers is the Permian’s Wolfcamp-Bone Spring Shale.
IEA Warns of Global Oil Supply Deficit, Leaning Too Heavily on US Output
US crude oil production is expanding at an unprecedented rate, but much faster growth will be needed in the next few years to meet the world’s demand if global investment in conventional supply doesn’t pick up, an IEA report indicates.
Total, ADNOC To Explore for Unconventional Gas in Abu Dhabi
The French major will become operator of the Ruwais Diyab concession, and ADNOC says additional companies are lining up to partner on the emirate’s other unconventional areas.
Frac Hits To Take Center Stage at SPE Hydraulic Fracturing Conference
The upcoming event will provide the shale sector with a venue to share new learnings and approaches meant to overcome one of its greatest subsurface challenges.
Gas Begins Flowing From UK Shale Well
Small quantities of gas and water are flowing to the surface from the UK’s first horizontal shale well—just days after operator Cuadrilla paused injection work for a second time amid earthquakes.
Gas Production Technology
Does better data lead to better outcomes for one or even for all? High-quality data have become a resource in themselves, to be traded and leveraged for personal gain.
Small Earthquakes Pause Fracturing of UK’s First Horizontal Shale Well
Cuadrilla has encountered its first bumps in the road while fracturing its Preston New Road shale gas well, with two quakes already temporarily halting injection operations.
Company To Fracture First UK Horizontal Shale Wells
Cuadrilla Resources will test the two wells over the next 6 months to determine how much gas it can initially recover from the Bowland Shale.
Section-Based Approach Optimizes Unconventional-Reservoir-Fracture Spacing
In this paper, the authors consider the development plan of shale gas or tight oil with multiple multistage fractured laterals in a large square drainage area that they call a “section” (usually 640 acres in the US).
Soaking Flowback With Surfactant Improves Oil Recovery in Unconventional Reservoirs
This paper evaluates the ability of different groups of surfactants to improve oil recovery in unconventional liquid reservoirs (ULRs) by experimentally simulating the fracture treatment to represent surfactant imbibition in a ULR core fracture during a soaking flowback.
Coupled Capillary-Pressure and Three-Phase Flash Models Simulate Liquid Blockage
This paper presents a new approach for more-accurate modeling of liquid blockage in tight oil and gas reservoirs and investigates the use of solvents for blockage removal.
Three Basins Driving Big Year-Over-Year Increase in US Gas Output
A marked change from a decade ago, Appalachia, the Permian, and the Haynesville now represent almost half of total US gas production, EIA reports.
Now There’s Enough Pressure Pumping and Sand to Go Around
Hydraulic fracturing is now a little bit easier for US shale operators thanks to readily available horsepower and in-basin sand.
BP To Buy US Shale Assets From BHP for $10.5 Billion
BP ends a year of speculation as to who will buy BHP Billiton’s much-coveted US unconventional business, transforming its Lower 48 portfolio in the process.
The Price of Permian Gas Pipeline Limits
Pipeline bottlenecks have created a wide gap in the price of gas at a key pipeline hub in the Permian compared to the US benchmark level.
Equinor Invests in Two Gas-Focused Tech Startups
Venture groups spend their time evaluating hundreds of companies each year to only make a handful of investments. These two cover interesting ends of the upstream spectrum: aerial drones and downhole artificial lift.
Coalbed Methane Prospects in Indonesia
This paper reviews the efforts to exploit CBM resources in Indonesia, the challenges these efforts have faced, and possible solutions that can make operations more efficient and profitable.
Coalbed Methane Development in China: Challenges and Opportunities
This paper presents a literature review to determine the engineering challenges and opportunities presented by CBM production in China.
Unlocking Egypt’s Unconventional-Resource Potential
The Apollonia tight-gas chalk play is located in the Abu Gharadig Basin in the Western Desert of Egypt. This has long been ignored as a gas play in the overburden, while the Jurassic and Cretaceous oil fields deeper in the basin have been explored and developed.
Unconventional-Reservoir Characterization With Azimuthal Seismic Diffraction Imaging
The complete paper proposes an azimuthal plane-wave-destruction (AzPWD) seismic-diffraction-imaging work flow to efficiently emphasize small-scale features associated with subsurface discontinuities such as faults, channel edges, and fracture swarms.
Firms Lay Transformation Blueprints for Post-Downturn E&P World
Two old school operators and a financial change agent embody a new era for the US onshore industry. Their CEOs convened at the NAPE Global Business Conference in Houston to explain why.
UK Shale Horizontal Drilling Under Way, Fracturing to Follow
Overcoming numerous regulatory hurdles, Cuadrilla Resources is pressing ahead with its plans to fracture a well in the UK for the first time since 2011.
Producers’ Commitments Keep Methane Emission Reduction in the Spotlight
With the API and a multi-operator group passing separate programs aimed at reducing methane emissions, the discussions on what defines an acceptable level of regulation continues within the industry.
Building Type Wells for Appraisal of Unconventional Resource Plays
The objective of the complete paper is to present an integrated work flow that can be used to build P90, mean, and P10 type wells, which represent the range of potential outcomes for the geologic subset in an unconventional resource play.
Production Pressure-Drawdown Management for Fractured Horizontal Shale Gas Wells
The primary objective of this study is to address all known causes of productivity declines in unconventional shale gas formations with horizontal multifractured wells and to develop a fully coupled geomechanical/flow simulation model to simulate these production conditions.
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