Bigger is better, right? If you look at corporate presentations from companies in basins all over the US, it would sure seem that way. Optimal proppant per lateral foot and perforation density are some things that are used commonly around the industry as a normalized means of completion optimization. However, is there really isn't much science behind a "bigger is better" approach? Neal Nagel with OilField Geomechanics, LLC recent wrote a very insightful article ( Sand Volume Per Unit Length of Lateral: Is There a Geomechanical Justification? ) about the pitfalls of using Sand Volume Per Unit Length of Lateral (SVULL) as a primary means of completion optimization.
Fracture ID's Drillbit Geomechanics™ measures in-situ mechanical rock properties along a wellbore. It can be an effective tool for making informed decisions when designing your completions. For example, what if your stage straddles a large stress change? If your perforation strategy is not sufficient to overcome a large stress differential, then then fracture treatment you assumed would evenly distribute across each entry point will most likely preferentially treat only a few entry points. There is a myriad of reasons this could be detrimental. What if you're trying to avoid height growth into a water productive interval? What if the majority of the reservoir in that stage goes un-stimulated? What if you screen out and have to clean out the well? We've seen every one of these scenarios and the negative economic impact they have.
We'd love to hear your thoughts on what you're doing to optimize your completions!
Sometimes even subtle shifts in stage lengths can make a huge difference in how a stimulation goes. Often times one or two stages can be eliminated all together, saving money on your completion.