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SPE 97106

The Impact of Proppant Retardation on Propped Fracture Lengths


P.B. Gadde and M.M. Sharma, U. of Texas at Austin
Copyright 2005, Society of Petroleum Engineers

This paper was prepared for presentation at the 2005 SPE Annual Technical Conference and
Exhibition held in Dallas, Texas, U.S.A., 9 12 October 2005.

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Abstract
A model for the velocity of proppant particles in slot flow is
presented. The proppant is either retarded or accelerated
relative to the fluid depending on the ratio of the proppant size
to the fracture width. It has been found that when this ratio is
small, the proppant travels faster than the average fluid
velocity at that location because the proppant tends to be
confined to the center of the flow channel where the fluid
velocity is higher. As the proppant size increases, the effect of
the fracture walls becomes more important and the proppant is
retarded by the walls. The retardation of particle relative to the
fluid is greater for larger particles and greater proximities to
the fracture walls due to the hydrodynamic stress exerted on
the sphere by the walls in the narrow gap. A higher proppant
concentration restricts the area available to flow and increases
the drag forces on the particles.
A model is presented for the effect of fracture walls and
proppant concentration on proppant transport. The effect of
this increased drag force is accounted for by modifying the
wall - particle interaction. The influence of the surrounding
proppant spheres on the drag force on a particle is estimated
from the effect of a wall on the drag force acting on a single
particle. The equivalent hydraulic diameter is then used to
determine the proppant retardation. The effects of wall
roughness and fluid leakoff are discussed. Models are
suggested that capture these first order effects.
The new model for proppant retardation has been incorporated
into a 3D fracture simulator. Results show that the proppant
placement is substantially different when proppant
retardation/acceleration is considered. Comparisons of
propped fracture lengths obtained with the new model agree
much better with propped and effective fracture lengths
reported in the field.
1. Introduction
Hydraulic fracturing is a commonly used stimulation
technique. Proppant transport is a key factor in determining
the productivity of these fractured wells. Water fracs are
common stimulation treatments for low permeability gas
reservoirs. These treatments use low viscosity Newtonian
fluids to create long narrow fractures in the reservoir, without
the excessive height growth that is often seen with cross-
linked fluids.
The low viscosity fluid and the narrow fractures introduce
some significant challenges for proper proppant placement.
The low viscosity of the carrying fluid leads to high settling
velocities for the proppant. The narrow fractures created can
have widths comparable to the diameter of the proppant and
can alter proppant transport significantly due to the
hydrodynamic forces acting on the proppant because of the
fracture walls. Other proppant particles create additional
hydrodynamic drag forces leading to retardation.
Fracture diagnostic studies that have been reported in the
literature have observed that the effective propped lengths for
both water fracs and conventional gelled fracs are sometimes
significantly different than those predicted by fracture models.
Designed and created fracture lengths are usually much longer
than the effective fracture lengths obtained from post
production analysis
1-4
. They can sometimes be an order of
magnitude lower.
Proppant transport is a key factor determining the effective
propped lengths and therefore the productivity of these
fractured wells. In current hydraulic fracture models, the
proppant is assumed to flow with the fluid in the direction of
fracture propagation. It is shown in this paper that the
proppant usually flows at a different velocity than the fluid,
particularly in narrow fractures. It is important to develop
reliable models to predict proppant transport. A detailed model
for proppant settling in water fracs was presented earlier by
the authors
5
. Several correlations for modeling proppant
settling in water fracs were presented. These UTFRAC
correlations allow fracture models to correct the settling
velocity for inertial effects, proppant concentration, fracture
width and turbulence. The models were implemented in a 3-D
hydraulic fracture simulator and results showed that propped
fracture lengths could vary significantly when settling was
properly accounted for.
2 SPE 97106
In this paper, a proppant transport model that accounts for the
relative motion between the proppant and fracture fluid along
the fracture due to the hydrodynamic effects of fracture walls
and proppant concentration is presented. This proppant
transport model has been incorporated into a 3-D finite
element simulator (UTFRAC-3D).
2. Past Experimental and Modeling Work
Liu and Sharma
6
present experimental data that shows that the
velocity of the proppant particles can be different from the
average velocity of the fluid. The proppant is either
accelerated or retarded depending on the ratio of the size of
the proppant to the distance between the fracture walls. When
the particle size is small relative to the fracture width, the
velocity of a proppant particle can be higher than the average
fluid velocity (Figure 1). It was observed that when the ratio
of the proppant size to the fracture width is large, the proppant
tends to flow to regions of low shear causing the particles to
move towards the center of the fracture. This causes the
average velocity of proppant to be greater than the average
fluid velocity
6
.
As the particle size increases relative to the fracture width, the
effect of fracture walls becomes important. The proppant
particles are retarded due to an increased drag force from the
fracture walls. The velocity of the proppant is significantly
reduced when the proppant diameter is comparable to the
fracture width
6
.
The effect of fracture walls is similar for high viscosity
Newtonian fluids as well as shear thinning fluids. The
proppant retardation or speed up is determined primarily by
the ratio of the particle size to the distance between the
fracture walls and by the fluid rheology
6
.
Staben
7
et. al. present a numerical solution for the motion of
particles between two parallel walls. The maximum average
particle velocity is 18% greater than the average fluid velocity
and occurs for particle diameters that are 42% of the distance
between the parallel walls. When the particle diameter exceeds
82% of the distance between the parallel walls, the average
particle velocity becomes lesser than the average fluid
velocity.
Figure 2 shows a graphical representation of the ratio average
particle velocity to the average fluid velocity as a function of
the ratio of the diameter of the particle to the distance between
the parallel walls based on numerical simulations. Figure 3
shows some experimental results for proppant transport
between fracture walls.


3. Model Development
3.1 Proppant Retardation (Single Particle)
A simple relationship that captures the trends and approaches
the correct limits (zero proppant velocity when the particle
diameter equals the distance between the fracture walls) is
obtained by curve fitting the simulation results.

99 . 0 26 . 1
2
+

=
W
d
W
d
V
V
p p
f
p
,
93 . 0 <

W
d
p
(1)

57 . 11 57 . 11 +

=
W
d
V
V
p
f
p
,
93 . 0

W
d
p
(2)
3.2 Proppant Retardation (Concentrated Suspension)
In hydraulic fracturing, the behavior of a single particle is of
little practical importance. It is important to consider the effect
of concentration on proppant transport. The presence of other
proppant particles increases the hydrodynamic drag forces on
a proppant sphere and thereby retards the motion of the
proppant sphere.
The fluid dynamic interaction of multi-particle suspensions is
very complex. Therefore the effect of surrounding particles
has been successfully resolved theoretically only for a few
limited cases such as fixed spatial arrangement of particles
etc
8, 9
. However, semi-empirical approaches in which particle-
particle interactions are simplified are effective and yield
satisfactory results for a wide range of cases. Some of the
existing approaches are the pseudo-fluid model and particle-
wall analogy. The pseudo-fluid model accounts for the
increased drag due to the surrounding particles by modifying
the fluid viscosity and density.
The surrounding particles restrict the area available for flow
and therefore increase the hydrodynamic drag forces on a
particle. In the particle-wall analogy, this increased drag force
on a particle can be estimated through a geometric analogy to
the presence of a wall. The concentration of the proppant
determines the effective distance between the proppant
spheres. In the particle-wall analogy, the hydrodynamic
interactions of the particles with a single sphere is
approximated by changing the slot width to obtain an
effective or equivalent slot width which yields the same
hydrodynamic drag. Hence, based on the proppant
concentration, an equivalent distance between the parallel
walls is calculated.
The advantage of this approach is that it is easier to handle a
single proppant sphere in concentrated proppant suspensions
because only the proppant sphere-wall fluid dynamic
interaction needs to be considered. In concentrated proppant
SPE 97106 3
suspension, a proppant spheres interact with each other and a
number of interactions need to be considered.
We apply the particle-wall analogy to proppant transport in a
fracture. When the particles are flowing through a very wide
channel, the particle-wall analogy modifies the slot width to
approximate the effect of the surrounding particles. For
proppant flowing between fracture walls, the additional
hydrodynamic drag due to concentration can be accounted for
through increasing the drag forces on the particle by the
fracture walls. This can be achieved by reducing the effective
or equivalent fracture width (W
eff
) based on the proppant
concentration.
The effective fracture width (W
eff
) can be expressed as

2 2 2
1 1 1
c eff
W W W
+ =
(3)
where W is the actual fracture width and W
c
is the change in
fracture width that accounts for the increased drag force on
particle due to concentration through an analogy of drag force
on the particle due to fracture walls.
The relation between the proppant concentration and the
pseudo-fracture width is assumed to be of the form

b
c
ac
W
=
2
1
(4)
where c is the proppant concentration.
When the concentration is 0, there is no additional drag force
due to the surrounding particles. Therefore the effective
fracture width equals the actual fracture width. When the
concentration reaches the maximum packing (c=0.65), the
proppant velocity approaches 0 and the effective fracture
width is equal to the proppant diameter so that the proppant
velocity goes to zero.
c=0,
W W
eff
=
and
0
1
2
=
c
W
(5)
c=0.65,
p eff
d W =
(6)
The effective fracture width is then used to determine the ratio
of the average proppant to average fluid velocity using Eqns 1
and 2. This model effectively captures the effect of proppant
concentration on the relative motion between the proppant and
the fluid (Figure 5). When the proppant concentration is small
and the proppant diameter is small compared to the fracture
width, the proppant particles tend to be confined to the low
shear areas near the center of the channel. Therefore, the
average proppant velocity is higher than the average fluid
velocity. However, as the proppant concentration is increased
keeping the actual fracture width constant, the effective
fracture width adjusted for the concentration effect decreases
and therefore the particles begin to feel an increased drag
force due to the walls. This increased drag force leads to a
reduction in the average proppant velocity. As the proppant
concentration approaches the maximum packing
concentration, the proppant velocity is greatly reduced (tip
screen out). If the actual fracture width is reduced keeping the
concentration constant, the effective channel width is reduced
by the same amount.
Assuming b to be 0.8, and from Eqns 4, 5 and 6,

8 . 0
2 2 2
1 1
411 . 1
1
C
W d W
p c

=
(7)
Figure 5 shows the effect of increasing particle concentration
on the ratio of average proppant velocity to the average fluid
velocity.

4. Incorporation into a 3-D Fracture Model
The wall effects and concentration effects discussed above
have been incorporated into a hydraulic fracture simulator
(UTFRAC 3-D). UTFRAC-3D is a three dimensional adaptive
mesh finite element simulator that rigorously accounts the
relative motion between the proppant and fluid both along the
flow direction and due to settling. This section provides a brief
discussion of how proppant transport is incorporated into this
3-D fracture hydraulic fracturing simulator.
4.1 Fluid Flow in the Fracture
Since a hydraulic fracture is a very narrow crack in the rock,
the fluid pressure variation across the fracture width (z-
direction) is negligible. The flow through the fracture is
modeled as a two dimensional in x-y plane between two
parallel walls.

.
t
w
q
y
q
x
q
L
y
x

(8)
4.2 Fracture Opening
The opening displacement equation for a mode-I plane
fracture of arbitrary shape in infinite elastic can be expressed
as

4 SPE 97106
( )
dxdy y d x d
y
w
y
v
x
w
x
v
r
1
v 1 4
G




( ) ( )dxdy y x, v y x, T

=

(9)
where T(x,y) = - [p(x,y) - (x,y)], (x,y) is the in-situ stress
distribution and G, are the shear modulus and Poisson's ratio
of the rock formation respectively.
The equations are solved using a Galerkin finite
10, 11
element
method. The adaptive finite element mesh shown in Figure 6
is used for both fracture mechanics and fluid flow equations.
A solution from these equations is obtained through an
iterative method.
For the moving boundary problem, an unstructured mesh is
employed in order to discretize the domain. An automatic and
domain-adaptive scheme is used. This scheme can remesh any
irregularly-shaped domain that may occur as the fracture
propagates. The techniques of smoothing and Delaunay
triangulation are employed to ensure the regularity of elements
and the smoothness of the mesh. In addition, a scheme for
adding new nodal points and, consequently, new elements to
refine the mesh is used when the fracture domain is highly
contained or significantly changed in size. The incremental
addition of new nodes effectively prevents the element size
from becoming too large. It also ensures a smooth mesh and
that elements in the domain are regular.

4.3 Proppant Transport
Mass conservation for the slurry can be expressed as


l f
q q
t
w

= +

) .(
) (
(10)
where is the slurry density, w is the fracture width, q is the
slurry velocity,
f
is the fluid density and q
l
is the leak-off.

Mass conservation for the proppant can be expressed as


0 ) .(
) (
= +

q c
t
w c
p
p

(11)
where c is the proppant concentration,
p
is the proppant
density, w is the fracture width and q
p
is the proppant velocity
(4.18)
The relative motion between the proppant and the fluid along
the fracture is accounted for through the wall and
concentration effects detailed in the earlier sections. The
relative motion in the vertical direction can be accounted
through corrected stokes settling. The proppant velocity q
p

can be expressed as

j V q i q q
t fy fx p
r r
) ( k
wc
+ + = (12)
where q
p
is the proppant veleocity, q
fx
and q
fy
are the fluid
velocity in the x and y directions respectively, V
t
is the
corrected settling velocity and k
wc
is the ratio between the
average proppant velocity and the average fluid velocity along
the fracture and is obtained from the wall effect and
concentration effects correlations.



f
p
V
V
=
wc
k
(13)
V
t
is the corrected stokes settling velocity and is expressed as


T W C s t
f f f f V V . . . .
Re
=
(14)

where V
s
is the stokes settling velocity, f
Re
is the correction
factor for inertial effects, f
c
is the cooreaciotn factor for
concentration effects, f
w
is the correction factor for wall effects
and f
T
is the correction factor for turbulence.

Combining Eqns 10, 11 and 12 we obtain the proppant
transport equation.

x ret
f
p
q k c c
x t
w
c
t
c
w )} 1 ( ) 1 {( ) 1 (




l
f
p
t y
q cV q c
y
=

] ) 1 [(

(15)

The boundary conditions (Figure 7) for the above equation are

c=c
p
on
p
(16)
c/dn=0 on
c
and f (17)

The initial condition is
c(x,y,0)=0 (18)

A Garlerkin finite element method is employed to obtain an
approximation to concentration c. The test function c is
approximated by a piecewise polynomial finite element basis
function as

= ) , ( ). ( y x t c c
j
(19)

The semi-discrete system of ordinary differential equations
can be expressed as


} { } ]{ [ ] [
c
f c B
dt
dc
A = +
(20)

where
SPE 97106 5

dxdy w A
j i ij

=
(21)

=
x
k k q
dt
dw
B
i
ret x j i ij



)] 1 ( 1 [ ( {


dxdy
y
V
y
q
j
i
t
f
p
i
y
} )

(22)

+ = dxdy
y
q
x
q
dt
dw
t
w
q f
i
y
i
x j i i l c


(23)
The pressure in the fracture, fracture width and proppant
concentration in the fracture are all coupled. However, it is
usually inefficient to solve them simultaneously. An effective
approximation for the proppant transport is to neglect the
interactive effect of species transport on the velocity field. The
movement of proppant with the flow in the fracture for a time
step does not directly affect the velocity field of the flow
during the current time step. However, the proppant
concentrations from the previous time step affect the velocity
field and fluid flow. The proppant transport is treated as a
quasi-steady state within each time step. Hence the proppant
transport calculation can be decoupled from the fluid pressure
and fracture width calculations.
The computation involves iterating for the pressure and
fracture widths based on the proppant concentration from the
previous time step. Once convergence is achieved, the
proppant transport equations are solved using the fracture
dimensions and fluid velocities to determine the proppant
concentrations. The updated proppant concentration is then
used to determine flow field for the next time step.

5. Results and Discussion
5.1 Effect of Fluid Rheology and Proppant Size
For low viscosity fracturing fluids, the settling velocity for the
proppant is high and is an important factor in determining the
proppant placement. Therefore, in order to isolate and
understand the effect of fracture walls and concentration on
proppant distribution in a fracture for low viscosity fracturing
fluids, a neutral buoyancy proppant is considered. With the
low density proppant, the settling velocities are low and do not
affect the proppant placement significantly. Also, the stress
contrasts were chosen such that the fracture is contained.
When low viscosity fracturing fluids are used, the fracture
widths are usually very narrow. The narrow fracture can have
a significant impact on proppant placement.
Figure 8a shows the proppant distribution in the fracture when
wall and concentration effects are not considered for a 10 cp
fluid and a neutrally buoyant proppant. Figure 8b shows the
impact of considering the wall effects and proppant
concentration on proppant transport. The proppant is retarded
due to the wall and concentration effects and therefore the
proppant placement is poorer compared to the case where the
wall and concentration effects are not considered.
When high viscosity fracturing fluids are used, the fractures
are wider. Therefore, the drag forces due to the wall and
concentration effects are smaller (Figure 9a).
Figure 9a shows the proppant distribution in the fracture
without considering the proppant retardation effects and 9b
shows the proppant distribution when these effects are
considered. Since the fracture is wider, the proppant particles
tend to flow along the center of the fracture. Therefore, the
average proppant velocity is higher than the average fluid
velocity and the proppant is transported further.
Figure 9c shows the effect of wall effects and concentration
effects for a larger proppant diameter. Note as the diameter of
the proppant increases, the hydrodynamic drag forces increase
and cause retardation of the proppant. Due to the reduction in
the proppant horizontal velocity for larger proppant, the
proppant is not placed as far out when compared to a smaller
diameter proppant.
5.2 Proppant Placement in Water, Gel and Hybrid Fracs
In order to study the effect of proppant retardation, the stress
contrasts were chosen such that the fracture is contained for
the water, hybrid and gel fracs. Figures 10a, 10b and 10c show
the proppant distribution in the fracture for water, gel and
hybrid fracs respectively. The proppant placement is poorer
for the water frac because the fracture is narrower. Figure 10d
shows the ratio of proppant diameter to the average fracture
widths for the gel, hybrid and water fracs considered. Note
that a gel frac is almost thrice as wide as a water frac.
Therefore the wall and concentration effects are not as
significant. The proppant placement for the hybrid and gel
fracs are, therefore, better.
5.3 Effect of Proppant Concentration
Figures 11a and 11b show the effect of inlet proppant
concentration on proppant placement for a gel frac. A higher
proppant concentration leads to a reduction in the effective
fracture width in accordance with the model for hydrodynamic
drag forces from the surrounding particles. With a high inlet
proppant concentration along with leak-off, the concentration
of proppant along the fracture becomes large. This causes it to
be significantly retarded relative to the fracture fluid. The
proppant therefore stops being transported along the fracture
and causes the net pressure to build up. In fracturing
operations this phenomenon is referred to as a tip screen out
(TSO). This occurs both for gel fracs and water fracs and is
more significant in water fracs.
6 SPE 97106
Figure 11c shows the proppant distribution for a higher inlet
proppant concentration when the proppant concentration is
slowly ramped up. The proppant placement is better than the
previous case where the concentration was not ramped. In
order to optimize proppant placement, ramping up proppant
concentration rather than injecting a high proppant
concentration from the beginning is shown to significantly
improve proppant placement. This is consistent with field
observations.
5.4 Effect of Pump Rate
Figures 12a and 12b show the effect of pump rate on proppant
placement when the stress contrast between the reservoir and
the adjacent layers is high and the fracture is contained even
for the higher rate. A higher pump rate leads to larger pressure
drop along the fracture and hence a wider fracture. Therefore
the proppant placement is better when the pumping rate is
higher.
However when height growth is expected, higher injection
rates do not necessarily yield better proppant placement.
Figure 12c shows the proppant distribution for a higher pump
rate when the stress contrast is not high enough to contain the
fracture. Higher rate leads to height growth and, therefore,
shorter propped lengths. To optimize proppant placement, the
pump rates should be selected based on the stress contrast.
5.5 Effect of Leak-off
Figures 13a and 13b show the effect of leak-off on proppant
placement. When the leak-off is high, the proppant
concentration in the fracture increases. This increased
concentration leads to an increase in the drag forces and
thereby retards the proppant. Higher leak-off can result in a
poorer proppant placement.
5.6 Proppant Retardation and Settling
In all the examples above, a neutrally buoyant proppant was
considered to highlight the effect of wall and concentration
effects on proppant placement. When a denser proppant
(specific gravity of 2.5) is used, the settling velocity is high
when a low viscosity fracturing fluid is used.
Figures 14a shows the proppant distribution for a 10 cp
fracturing fluid (proppant specific gravity of 2.5) when the
wall and concentration effects are not considered. Figure 14b
shows the proppant placement when these effects are
considered.
Note that the combined effect of proppant settling and
proppant retardation leads to significantly poorer proppant
placement.
5.7 Optimizing Propped Fracture Lengths
From the previous sections it is evident that wall and
concentration effects can have a significant impact on the
proppant placement. Therefore while designing fractures, it is
important to account for the relative motion between the
proppant and the fracturing fluid. Figure 15 shows the ratio of
propped lengths considering the retardation effects (LP
w,c
) and
propped length without considering the retardation effect (LP)
versus the ratio of proppant diameter to the average fracture
width. It is seen from the figure that as the fractures become
narrow and the inlet concentration increases, proppant
retardation effects become more important. Fluid rheology,
proppant size and concentration affect the proppant placement.
Also as seen from Figures 12b and 12c, stress contrast can
play an important role. Because of the large number of
variables involved and their interdependence, fracture
simulations are essential for optimizing frac design.
5.8 Field Case - APC Anderson #2
The model results were compared to field observations for
APC Anderson #2
4
. The York stimulation was a hybrid job.
Figure 16 shows the fracturing schedule. Microseismic
monitoring conducted for this job offers a good estimate of the
created fracture length
4
. Figure 17 shows the microseismic
data. The effective fracture length calculated from pressure
build-up data suggested an effective fracture length of 220 ft.
Figure 18a shows the proppant placement without considering
proppant retardation effects. The propped length obtained is
approximately 450 ft. Figure 18b shows the proppant
distribution when the wall and concentration effects are
considered. The propped length is shorter and is
approximately 300 ft and is more consistent with the effective
fracture length obtained from the build up analysis.
Conclusions
A proppant transport model that accounts for hydrodynamic
effects of fracture walls and proppant concentration and
corrected proppant settling is presented. This model allows
hydraulic fracture simulators to consider the relative motion
between the proppant and the fracturing fluid. Results from
the simulator show the importance of accounting for proppant
retardation (the relative motion between proppant and the
fracturing fluid) both for water fracs and conventional gel
fracs. The effective fracture lengths obtained can vary
significantly from similar simulations conducted without
considering these effects. This model helps in designing
fracture treatments that maximize propped frac lengths.





SPE 97106 7
References

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Boundary Integral Equation for Mode I Embedded Three-
Dimensional Fractures, International Journal for
Numerical Methods in Engineering, 1988, 26, pp. 1525-
1540





















V
f
V
p
Figure 1: Average fluid velocity and the average proppant
velocity.

0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
1.4
0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1
dp/W
V
p
/
V
f


Figure 2: Ratio of average proppant velocity to the average
fluid velocity versus ratio of proppant diameter to
fracture width.


0
0.1
0.2
0.3
0.4
0.5
0.6
0.7
0.8
0.9
1
1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4
1.5
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1
Particle Diameter/Cell Width
A
v
e
r
a
g
e

P
a
r
t
i
c
l
e

V
e
l
o
c
i
t
y
/

A
v
e
r
a
g
e

F
l
u
i
d
V
e
l
o
c
i
t
y
Fluid Viscosity = 1cp
Fluid Viscosity= 10.2 cp
780 cp ( Glycerin )


Figure 3: Experimental observations that show the effect of
fracture walls on the average proppant velocity
relative to the fluid velocity (Liu and Sharma
6
).



8 SPE 97106



Figure 4: Hydrodynamic analogy of a multi-particulate
suspension and a particle between walls.


0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
0.00 0.20 0.40 0.60 0.80 1.00
dp/W
V
p
/
V
f
c=0
c=0.3
c=0.5
c=0.6
c=0.64
c=0.1


Figure 5: Ratio of average proppant velocity to the average
fluid velocity versus ratio of proppant diameter to
fracture width for various concentrations.




Figure 6: Finite element mesh for solving the fracture
mechanics, fluid flow and proppant transport
equations.



W
c



d
f













Figure 7: Boundary of the fracture.









Figure 8a: Proppant placement without wall and
concentration effects for 10 cp fluid.




Figure 8b: Proppant placement with wall and concentration
effects for 10 cp fluid.






d
p
d
c
d
c
SPE 97106 9







Figure 9a: Proppant placement without wall and
concentration effects for 500 cp fluid.





Figure 9b: Proppant placement with wall and concentration
effects for 500 cp fluid for smaller proppant
diameter (40-70).





Figure 9c: Proppant placement with wall and concentration
effects for 500 cp fluid for larger proppant
diameter (20-40).













Figure 10a: Proppant placement for a slick water frac.



Figure 10b: Proppant placement for a gel frac.



Figure 10c: Proppant placement for a hybrid frac.

0
0.05
0.1
0.15
0.2
0.25
0.3
0.35
0.4
Gel Hybrid Water
R
a
t
i
o

o
f

P
r
o
p
p
a
n
t

D
i
a
m
e
t
e
r

t
o

A
v
e
r
a
g
e

F
r
a
c
t
u
r
e

W
i
d
t
h
40/70 Proppant
20/40 Proppant


Figure 10d: Ratio of proppant diameter to the average fracture
width for gel, hybrid and water fracs for 20/40
and 40/70 proppant.

10 SPE 97106







Figure 11a: Proppant placement for lower inlet proppant
concentration (1 ppg).






Figure 11b: Proppant placement for higher inlet proppant
concentration (4 ppg).





Figure 11c: Proppant placement when the inlet proppant
concentration is ramped up (1-4ppg).
















Figure 12a: Proppant placement for higher pumping rate (50
BPM).





Figure 12b: Proppant placement for lower pumping rate (25
BPM).



Figure 12c: Proppant placement for higher pumping rate (50
BPM) for low stress contrast.




SPE 97106 11


Figure 13a: Proppant placement with lower leak-off.


Figure 13b: Proppant placement with higher leak-off.








Figure 14a: Proppant placement with settling and without
wall and concentration effects for a water frac.



Figure 14b: Proppant placement with wall and concentration
effects and with settling for a water frac.



0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
0 0.05 0.1 0.15 0.2 0.25 0.3 0.35 0.4
dp/W
L
P
w
,
c
/
L
P
c=1 ppg
c=4 ppg


Figure 15: Ratio of propped fracture length with wall and
concentration effects to the propped length
without these effects versus the ratio of proppant
diameter to average fracture width.

0.77 psi/ft
Flush
Proppant
X-Link
Slick Water
Acid
Breakdown
ISIP Grad
0.89 psi/ft
Closure Grad
0.76 psi/ft
Mini -frac
0.0
0.5
1.0
1.5
2.0
2.5
3.0
3.5
(
ppg
)
Pressure (
psi
)
2000
4000
6000
8000
10000
12000
0.77 psi/ft
Time
Flush
Proppant
X-Link
Slick Water
Acid
Breakdown
ISIP Grad
0.89 psi/ft
Mini-frac
0.0
0.5
1.0
1.5
2.0
2.5
3.0
3.5

P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e

(
P
s
i
)

2000
4000
6000
8000
10000
12000
Closure Grad
0.77 psi/ft
Time
P
r
o
p
p
a
n
t

C
o
n
c

(
p
p
g
)

Closure Gra
0.77 psi/ft


Figure 16: Fracture treatment in the York sand.

12500
12600
12700
12800
12900
13000
13100
13200
13300
13400
13500
-700 -600 -500 -400 -300 -200 -100 0 100 200 300
Distance Along Fracture (ft)
D
e
p
t
h

(
f
t
)
Communicating fault between the
York and Bonner
York
Bonner
Non-communicating fault,
attenuation noted in MS signals
12500
12600
12700
12800
12900
13000
13100
13200
13300
13400
13500
-700 -600 -500 -400 -300 -200 -100 0 100 200 300
Distance Along Fracture (ft)
D
e
p
t
h

(
f
t
)
Communicating fault between the
York and Bonner
York
Bonner
Non-communicating fault,
attenuation noted in MS signals

400-600 ft created fracture
length and 220 ft effective
fracture length estimated from
build-up analysis
Figure 17: Anderson #2 York Stimulation, Microseismic Data

12 SPE 97106



Figure 18a: Proppant distribution for APC Anderson #2
without wall and concentration effects.



Figure 18b: Proppant distribution for APC Anderson #2 with
wall and concentration effects.