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R. P. Nordgren
Shell Development Company
Houston, Texas
The strength of completions in producing wells
is studied by means of the theories of poroelasticity
and poroplasticity. Solutions are obtained for an
open hole completion and for a perforated completion
modeled as a hemispherical cavity and as a long
cylindrical cavity. Drawdown pressures for initial
yield are given by simple formulas for the linear
and parabolic forms of the extended yon Hises yield
function. The theory presented here may lead to
a practical criterion for drawdown pressures to
avoid production problems.
In many petroleum wells, the rate of production
is limited by the risk of formation failure in the
completion interval. A failure may halt production
either permanently or until an expensive workover
can be carried out. In order to minimize the risk
of failure, weak formations can be strengthened by
gravel packing or through one of several available
chemical treatments. However, such strengthening
measures are expensive and may restrict production
and complicate future recompletions to alternate in-
tervals. At the other extreme, very strong forma-
tions may permit open hole completions with liners
or screens. Such completions generally are more
productive than the usual perforated completions.
Knowledge of completion strength is essential
for selecting the optimum type of completion and
evaluating the need for a strengthening treatment.
The completion decision will be based largely on
the maximum allowable production rate for each
candidate completion type and strengthening
treatment. The completion strength depends on
the inherent strength of the treated or untreated
formation rock and the stresses imposed on the rock
during production. The stresses near the completion
depend on many factors including flow rate, well
pressure, reservoir pressure, and the original in-
situ state of stress.
The present investigation is intended to provide
a basic theoretical understanding of the mechanical
strength of completions in production wells. To
this end, an open hole completion and idealized
perforated completions are analyzed according to
the theories of poroelasticity and poroplasticity.
The perforated completion is modeled as a hemi-
spherical cavity and as a long cylindrical cavity.
The simple geometries of the open hole and the
hemispherical and cylindrical cavities permit
approximate analytic solutions to be obtained. Also,
the effect of reservoir depletion is investigated
using an approximate solution for a circular disk-
shaped reservoir.
An indication of the strength of each type
of completion is obtained by determination of the
onset of plastic behavior (initial yield) at the
completion. Initial yield is determined from a
solution of the poroelasticity equations for the
completion and a yield function for the forma-
tion rock. The yield functions chosen for the
present study are the linear and parabolic forms
of the axtended Hises yield function proposed by
Drucker and Prager (1952) and Murrell (1963).
These yield functions are partially supported by
the experimental data of Antheunis et al. (1976)
for a friable sandstone. For each type of
completion, a simple formula is obtained for
the critical well pressure at initial yield.
Yield pressures are displayed in dimensionless
form for the parabolic yield function. The
criterion of initial yield is expected to pro-
vide a conservative criterion against completion
In order to use one of the proposed yield
criteria, it is necessary to know the material
constants in the yield function. These con-
stants should be determined by strength tests
on core material whenever possible. As sugges-
ted by Stein and Hilchie (1972) and Tixier et
al. (1973), it may be possible to estimate the
material constants from well-log parameters
such as acoustic velocity. The details of
such estimates and further consideration of
strength experiments lie outside the scope of
the present investigation.
Our results should be applied to field pro-
blems with due caution. Further experimentation
and field testing are still required to validate
the theory or indicate when modifications may
be necessary. In particular, the erosive ef-
fects of flow rate have not been considered in
the present study.
Before presenting solutions for the comple-
tion problems, we will review briefly the
theories of poroelasticity and poroplasticity.
A nonmathematical discussion of the application
of our results is given in the last section of
the paper.
The linear theory of elasticity is well
established and the basic equations are develop-
ed in several texts (e.g., Timoshenko and
Go0dier , 1951). Extension of the theory to
account for the effect of pore pressure in a
porous medium originates in the work of Blot
(1941, 1955). SubsequentIy, the equations of
poroelasticity have been derived and discussed
by many authors. The form of the poroelasticity
equations given by Geertsma (1966) is particu-
larly convenient and will be used here.
With reference to rectangular Cartesian
coordinates x i (i - 1, 2, 3), the equations of
equilibrium for any continuous medium, in the
absence of body force, read
oil,j = 0 (1)*
*Repeated indices imply smmaation and coaa de-
notes partial differentiation with respect to
vhere 044 is the syaetric (total) stress tensor.
For infatitestmal deforation of a continuous med-
ium, the strain-dispLaceent relations are
eij= (uid + uj ,i) (2)
where e i. is the strain tensor and u. is the dis-
placemen vector. He follov the standard sign con-
ventions of the theory of elasticity where Oll > 0
corresponds to tension and ell > 0 corresponas tb
The linear constitutive equations for an iso-
tropic poroelastic continuum may berritten in the
followin form (Geertsma, 1966):
Oij = 2C(eij + 1- e tij) - (1-5) p iJ (3)*
3 (1-2)
e = ekk , = /CB' CB = 2(l+)G
Here, is the ratio of rock matrix compressibility
C R to bulk compressibility C, p is the pore pres-
sure, G is the shear modulus nd V is ?oisson's
ratio for the bulk continuum. The last term in (3)
represents the effect of pore pressure which is ana-
logous to the effect of temperature in thermoelasti-
city as po/nted out by Lubinskt (1954). By (3),
see that a completely restrained body (ei = 0) un-
dergoes isotropic compressire stress as pore pres-
sure increases. On the other hand, an unrestrained
Jacketed body (Oi4 - 0 ) undergoes expansion on
increase of pore ressure.
A slightly different interpretation of (3) is
useful in applications such as ours when initial in-
situ stress is present. In this case, it and are
regarded as changes in stress and pore pressure
from their values in the initial state. Displace-
ments are measured from the initial state and conse-
quently e.. vanishes in the initial state. Then
initLal stress tsor to fom total stress ten-
sor Oi.. Since the initial state of stress is in
equilrium, (1) holds for change in stress
On substitution of (2) and (3) into (1), *e
have the displacement equations of equilibrium
1 (1-8) ,i = 0 (4)
ui,JJ + (1-2v-- uj,ji
For a given pressure field , the field equation (4)
is to be solved for the displacement vector u o
Boundary conditions are imposed on u i or on
stress vector
o i = oij (5)
Where . is the unit vector normal to the boundary
surface The pore pressure is obtained from solu-
tion of the equations for fluid flo in a porous med-
ium. In the simplest case of linear, single-phase
flor, satisfies the field equation (Geertsma, 1966)
0 'kk = CT + (1-8) e (6)
c T
ere, k is the formation permeability, the fluid
viscosity, C the fluid compressibility, and the
porosity. I addition, boundary conditions are
imposed on or on the flow rate
*p Ionecker delta i' is defined as =
J and
q=-i p' i (7)
Also, satisfies initial conditions at time zero.
The right-hand side of (6) is usually neglgible for
the flo problems of interest here. aen e is
negligible in (6), the flor problem is uncoupled
and can be solved independently of the elasticity
problem governed by equation
The constitutive equations of poroelasticity
(3) furnish a linear isotropic relation between
stress, strain, and pore pressure and there is no
peaanent strain after a cycle of loading and
unloading. Linear poroelasticity may be a good
idealization of the actual behavior of porous rocks
over a limited range of stress. However, at suffi-
ciently large values of stress, departures from
linearity occur and there are permanent or plastic
strains after a cycle of loading and unloading.
Generally, the rock fails at sufficiently large
plastic strains or after a number of plastic loading
cycles. In this section, we revtev the formulation
of the theory of poroplasticity in which a yield
function delineates the initiation of plastic
yielding. In some problems, hitial yield provides
a useful criterion against failure. Fuller discus-
sions of poroplasticity have been given by Jaeger
and Cook (1969), adai (1950), and many others.
Upon introduction of a yield function f (Ott),
the behavior of an elastic/plastic material can-e
separated into two regimes as follows:
Elastic if f < 0 or f = 0, f < 0
0 (8)
Plastic if f = 0 and f - 0
and f > 0 is not admitted. Tn the incremental
theory of plasticity, the strain is divided into
an elastic component e
e such that: iJ and a plastic component
m e ! e ! !
eij ij + ij (9)
The elastic strain component satisfies equation (3)
and the plastic strain component satisfies a flor
rule as discussed by Heilder and Paslay (1970). In
the present study, no use is made of the flow rule
for e and it r111 not be discussed further.
Ytetid functions used in this investigation are
extensions of the classical yon Hises yield function
to include the effect of mean stress. The extended
Hises yield function has the general form
f (,71 , J2 ) (10)
here the stress invariants J. and J_ are express-
able in terms of principal stresses 1' 2' 3 as
J--1 = - 1_ (1+02+05) _ P 3
The quantity J1 may be interpret2as the mean eff-
ective compresslye stress and J2 ' as the mean
square shear stress.
A sim? form of (10) is the linear relation
betveen J?'- and proposed by Drucker and
Prager (1952), namely
I 21/2 a 1) (11) = - (o +
The material constant T is a measure of shear stren-
gth at zero mean stressand measures the increase
in shear strength with mean compressire stress. Eq-
uation (11) can be readily generalized to a multi-
linear convex yield function which is useful in app-
lications as will be seen later.
Another simple am useful form of (10) is the
parabolic yield function proposed by Murrell (1963),
F= 3 2- C J1 (12)
where C is a material constant which measures the
increase of shear strength with mean compressire
strength. Combinations of (11) aD (12) also are
Full consideration of the experimental problem
of selecting a yield function and determining the
associated material constants is beyond the scope of
the present investigation. Discussion of this dif-
ficult problem is given by Jaeger and Cook (1969)
and throughout the literature of rock mechanics. As
an illustration of the difficulties involved, we use
the Mises invariants (10) to interpret the experi-
mental data for a reservoir rock presented by
Antheunis et al (1976). The experiments consisted
of conventional triaxial compression and extension
tests as well as collapse tests on thick walled
cylinders under radial and axial pressures. Figure
1 shows an interpretation of this data* for Material
A which had a Brinell haess number of 9 to 11.
In calculating 3 and J2-'- the stress state in the
triaxial specimefis is assumed to be uniform. The
stress state in the thick walled cylinders at col-
lapse is assumed to be given by the Lam solution of
elasticity theory (Timoshenko and Goodlet, 1951).
This solution neglects any inelastic behavior prior
to collapse. The magnitude of inelastic effects in
the collapse test is not known. As seen from Figure
1, the experimental data can be fit reasonably well
by a bilinear form of (11) or by combination of (11)
and (12), except fo the triaxial extension data.
The extension fractures usually observed in the tri-
axial extension test (Jaeger and Cook, 1969) may
constitute a different type of failure mechanism
than the shearing failures usually observed in the
triaxial compression test and the collapse test and
expected in completion failure. The triaxiat exten-
sion test was the main basis for adoption by Anthen-
his et al. (1976) of the Mohr-Coulomb yield function
and a critical-strain failure criterion instead of
the extended Mises yield function. We believe that
both approaches merit serious consideration. Con-
siderable further research will be required to reach
a completely acceptable general failure criterion.
The state of stress in the earth has been the
subject of considerable research as discussed by
Jaeger and Cook (1969), Howard and Fast (1970), and
Macpherson amd Berry (1972). Here we give a brief
review of'the subject for depths of interest in
petroleum production.
On the basis of density measurements, it is
generally agreed that the vertical component of
total (compressire) in-situ stress S. increases with
depth at a gradient of approxtmatelyVl.0 psi/ft with
considerable variation at shallow depths. The mini-
mum horizontal component of total in-situ stress,
SH1 , has been estimated from measurements of frac-
ture extension and shut-in pressure. In tectonically
*Specifically, the data was taken from Table 1 and
Figures 1 and 3 of Antheunis et al (1976).
relaxed regions, Sm is generally between 0.6 to 1.0
times S V. The oth horizontal stress S. 2 is diffi-
cult to determine and it is often assume that
and S.. are equal, in which case they are denoteZby
S. tectonically active regions, the horizontal
sEresses may exceed S v. Around salt domes, geolo-
gical evidence indicates that the principal in-situ
stresses do not act in horizontal and vertical di-
rections and they may have widely different values.
Initial reservoir pressures p also may vary
considerably. Shallower reservoir generally follow
the hydrostatic pressure gradient of 0.45-0.48 psi/
ft. In the Gulf Coast region and some other re-
gions, the pressure gradient often departs from the
hydrostatic gradient at a particular depth and in-
creases abruptly with depth. In extremely deep
wells, p may approach S
Aftar production, te pressure in a depleted
reservoir may be reduced to as little as 1000 psi.
Reservoir depletion also changes the components of
total stress through the poroelastic effect discus-
sed in connection with equation (3). An example of
this change is considered in Appendix A for a deeply
buried circular disk-shaped reservoir. When the
radius of the reservoir is much greater than its
height and much less than its depth and the reser-
voir is at the depleted constant pressure p, we fiD
(Appendix A) that the new in-situ stresses S V' and
S H' near the well are approm-tely

s v' = Sv, s' = s- n(p i - p) (13)
n - (l-S) (1-2v) /
and SV, S H are the original in-situ compresslye
Drilling and completion operations also may
cause changes in the stress state near the well.
The stresses near cemented and perforated comple-
tions are difficult to quantify even before produc-
tion begins. The expansion properties of cements
are subject to uncertainty amd even the basic mecha-
nisms involved in shaped-charge perforations are not
well understood. Further, time-dependent relaxation
phenomena may take place after the'well is complet-
ed. Thus, we assume that the stress state near the
well is the in-situ state or the state (13) for de-
pleted reservoirs.
We consider a perforated completion in the form
of a hemispherical cavity. This model seems most
applicable to relatively weak formations where a
long perforation tunnel could not remain open. Fur-
ther, the hemisphere has intrinsic appeal as the
"strongest" shape for a cavity or arch.
A poroelastic solution is readily obtained from
known solutions in elasticity and thermoelasticity
for a spherical cavity. For application to a hemi-
spherical cavity, this solution requires zero shear
stress and zero normal displacement on the diametri-
cal plane forming the hemisphere from the sphere.
We assume that such is the case for the completion,
thereby neglecting any cement-perforation bond which
may. have been disturbed by the perforation operation
anyway. The poroelastic solution is examined in
terms of the yield functions to determine well pres-
sure for initial yield.
First, we recall the solution for a spherical
cavity in an unlimited elastic medium under uniaxial
compresslye stress S at a large distance from the
cavity. With reference to cylindrical coordimates
(r, 8, z) with z in the direction of S, the solu-
tion for stresses at the intersection of the plane
z = 0 with the cavity reads (Timoshenko and Goodier,
O r = 0, O z -81S, 08 = -82S (14)
27-15v 15v-3
81 = 14-10 ' 82 = 14-1
By the poroelasticity-thermoelasticity analogy
(Lubinski, 1954) and a thermoelasticity solution
(Timoshenko and Goodlet, 1951), the solution for
this same spherical cavity under internal pressure
p with isotropic stress S at infinity and steady
redial flow at rate 2q (q into a hemisphere) gives
radial and tangential stresses at the cavity as
= i 3 npq (15)
Or -Pw' Ot = Pw - S + 2ka
where a is the cavity radius. For the case of a
spherical cavity under in-situ principal stresses
(S H , SH2, Sv) , on superposing (14) and (15), we
fin the following stresses at the intersection of
the principal stress axis for SH2 with the cavity:
1 1
Or = -Pw' 08 = Pw - S8' Oz = Pw-Sz (16)
3 nqU
S8 = SH2 + 82(Sv-SH2) + 81(SH1-SH2) - 2ka
3 nq
Sz = SH2 + 81(Sv-SH2) + 82(SHl-SH2) - 2ka
In forming (16), we think of SH2 as being the iso-
tropic stress, S v - Sw? as being uniaxial stress
in the vertical direcon, and S.1 - S'2 as being
uniaxial stress in the other horzonta direction.
When SH1 and S are different, two cases should be
considered in wat follows with SKi and SH2 values
interchanged in (16) to find the worst case. Note
that the principal stresses S , S.-, S._ need not be
vertical and horizontal for tee 1 z
By (10), the Mises stress invariants associated
with (16) are
-- 1
J1 = (Sz + S8) - Pw
-- 1
J2 " J12 + (Sz - S8)2
In order to investigate initial yield, the linear
yield criterion (11) at the cavity can be written
using (17) as
f = A1 (Pw - Pl)(Pw
3 =
A1 = _ e2, B1 2eTo
Cl = (Sz_So)2 _ 2 o
- p2 )
(P] (B12-4Aic1)l/2]/2A1
1 --
p = (Sz+S 8) + [-B 1 +
The roots Pl and P2 are real if
3To2 >_ A 1 (S z - se) 2 (20)
If (20) holds, then the material is elastic (f < O)
at the cavity if
Pl < Pw < P2 for A 1 > 0, (e < /3/2) (21)
Pw < Pl or P2 < Pw for A 1 < 0
If A] < 0, then by (20) there will always be
two real ?oot8. In this case, the root P2 corres-
ponds to . < 0 in general and only the p. root
is of practical interest. The condition p < p. 1
does not place a lower limit on the yield pressure
If A_ > 0 and there are no real roots, as
indicatedlby violation of (20), then f cannot.
change sign and by (18), f > 0. However, this
is not admissable and the perforation must already
have yielded.
If A. > 0 and there are real roots, then (21)
places a ower limit on Pw at which initial yield
occurs. The upper limit on p in (21) may not have
physical significance since filure by fracturing
could occur before this limit is reached. Fractur-
ing failure is not of interest in the present
study and no use will be made of the upper limit P2
in (21). Also, further investigation shows that
initial yield may not occur at the cavity face as
assumed above if the flow rate is sufficiently high.
Such flow rates are much higher than usually encoun-
tered in practice and will not be considered here.
The foregoing results for the linear yield
function (11) can be extended to the convex piece-
wise linear form. The linear segments are simply
considered individually and the greatest lower limit
p] (for A 1 > 0 cases) is the lower limit on Pw
fdr elastic behavior.
The parabolic yield function (12) also leads
to solution of a quadratic equation for yield pres-
sure. We find that the perforation is elastic if
Pl < Pw < P2 and C q' [Sz-SO] (22)
Plt 1 2 2 3 1/2
P = (Sz+S e) - c [c 2 - (Sz-Se)2]
If the restriction on C is not satisfied, then yield
has already occurred. Again, the upper limit on Pw
may not be physically significant.
The effect of the flow rate q on the yield
pressure is easily examined. By (16) and (18), A,
B., C. are independent of q. Then, by (16), (19)
ad (i2), the change in yield pressure with q for
both yield functions is given by
nvq (23)
Pl = - 3k
Thus, yield pressure decreases as q increases.
This somewhat surprising result reflects the fact
that compressire normal stresses decrease as pore
pressure decreases through the poroelastic effect
as discussed in connection with equation (3). This
decrease i/ompressive stress decreases the shear
measure J2-' more than 1 in (17), thereby de-
creasing he tendency to yield.
The preceding results for yield pressure can
be cast into a convenient dimensionless form for
graphical display. As seen from (16) and (22), the
dimensionless yield pressures pl/C and p2/C for the
parabolic yield function are functions of the dimen-
sionless variables
S V SH1 SH2 q
' S V ' S V 2kaC' (24)
Numerical results for the parabolic (Murrell) yield
function are shown in Figure 2 for q = 0, S = S -
= Hi H2
S., = 0.2, and various values of S./S V. These
results can be extended to include flow rate using
(23). The upper limits P2 are shown dashed in Figure
2 for mathematical completeness and they may not be
physically meaningful as already discussed. Results
similar to Figure 2 can be plotted for the linear
yield function by (16) and (19). Application of the
results of Figure 2 to completion problems is discus-
sed in the last section of the paper.
We consider a long cylindrical perforation
lying in a horizontal plane. A state of plane
strain is assumed in planes normal to the perfora-
tion. This idealization neglects effects of the
cemented well bore and the end of the perforation.*
Also, we neglect the poroelastic effect of pressure
change accompanying fluid flow since this pressure
field is not readily idealized. As in the previous
section, we seek to determine the well pressure for
initial yield.
Using the Lam and Kirsch solutions in the
theory of elasticity (Timoshenko and GoodYet, 1951),
the components of stress in cylindrical coordinates
at the perforation face are
o r = -pw,O0 = Pw-S0 , o z -S z (25)
S O = 2S v - (Sv-SH1)(1-2cos 20)
S z = SH2 + 2 (Sv-SH1) cos 20
Here the in-situ stress S_ 2 is assumed to be aligned
with the perforation. The invariants of stress (10)
for (25) are
-- 1
J1 = (Sz + 2S8) - Pw (26)
= 1
J2 (Pw - S8 )2 + (Sz - S8 )2
and the linear yield function (11) becomes
f = A2 (Pw - Pl )(pw - P2 ) (27)
A 2 = 1- 2, B 2 =
i 2
c 2 = (Sz-So) -
- T + 1 (28)
o ' (Sz-So)
(p:] -
p = S O + [-B 2 + (B22 - 4A2c2)l/2]/2A2
*Results of a finite-element numerical analysis
indicate that the plane strain idealization is valid
away from the ends if the perforation length is at
least four times its diameter.
The roots Pl and pA are real if
2zz (1- 2) (Sz-Ss) 2 (29)
If (29) holds, then the material is elastic (f < 0)
Pl < Pw < P2 for A 2 > 0, ( < 1)
Pw < Pl or P2 < Pw for A 2 < 0
The discussion of (29) and (30) is identical with
the discussion following equation (21) and will not
be repeated. In checking for yield, S and S must
be evaluated at 0 = 0 and 0 - /2 in (25). z
For the parabolic yield function (12) by (26),
the perforation is elastic if
Pl < Pw < P2 and -C I 2(Sz-S 8) ! 3C (31)
P = S 8 - C; [C 2 - (Sz-S 8 - 21-C)211/2//3
If the second of (31) is not satisfied, then f > 0
which is not admissable and the perforation has
already yielded.
Dimensionless results for yield pressure (31)
under the parabolic (Murrell) yield function are
shown in Figure 3 for S -- S = S V = 0 2, and
H1 2 H '
various values of SH/S v. Again 2, the dashed lines
corresponding to the larger root p in (31) may
not be physically meaningful. AppIication of the
results is discussed in the last section of the
We confine attention to an open circular bore-
hole in line with the vertical in-situ principal
stress S V and carry out an analysis similar to the
previous section. According to the Lam and Kirsch
solutions for plane strain in the theory of elasti-
city (Timoshenko and GoodYet, 1951), cylindrical
components of stress at the borehole are given by
r = -Pw' O0 = Pw-So ' Oz = -Sz (32)
S 0 = 2SH2 - (SH2 - SH1)(1 - 2cos 20)
S z = S v + 2 (SH2 - SH1) cos 28
The analysis procedure is exactly the same as
for the cylindrical perforation in the previous
section. Specifically, (32) evaluated at 8 = 0
and /2 is used in (28). Then (28) to (30) apply
for the linear yield function and (31) applies for
the parabolic yield function.
Dimensionless results for yield pressure under
the parabolic (Murrell) yield function are given in
Figure 4 which is discussed in the next section.
Formulas for the well pressure at initiation
of yield have been developed in the preceding sec-
tions for a hemispherical perforation, a long cylin-
drical perforation and an open hole completion.
Specifically, the lower yield pressure p. for the
hemispherical perforation is given by equation (19)
for the linear yield function (11) and by (22) for
the parabolic yield function (12) where S and S 8
are defined by (16). For the long cylindrZical per-
foration, the lower yield pressure Pl is given by
(28) for the linear yield function aSd by (31) for
the parabolic yield function where S_ and Sa are
defined by (25). The same formulas 28) an (31)
apply to the open hole completion with S_ and
S defined by (32) instead of (25). Asnoted
bfore, the upper yield pressure P2 may not be
physically meaningful since failure by fracturing
could occur before this limit is reached. The lower
yield pressure Pl is expected to provide a limit on
well pressure to-avoid completion failure in each
case. However, this limit must be applied with cau-
tion since field verification is lacking.
The dimensionless plots of yield pressure for
the parabolic (Murrell) yield function in Figures 2
to 4 give considerable insight into the effects of
various parameters on the completion problem. Fur-
ther, relative strengths of the various completions
can be compared. For example, a hemispherical per-
foration in a normally pressured reservoir (p/S w
0.45) with Sw/Sr -- 0.8 would yield immediatel i
the strength"paameter C is such that C/S v < 0.45
according to Figure 2. If C/S v = 0.6, thn drawdown
to a pressure of p. /S,, = 0.21 is possible without
yielding, assumingWSSv remains at 0.8. However,
reservoir depletion ffctively decreases S as
seen from equation (13) for the case of a deply
buried thin circular reservoir. If Sw/S v changes
to 0.7, then yield is predicted at p..,7S'= 0.30 for
C/S v 0.6. Similar conclusions can"be-reached for
the'long cylindrical perforation from Figure 3.
Comparison of Figures 2 and 3 shows that the yield
pressure for the hemispherical perforation is lower
than for the long cylindrical perforation. Thus,
the hemispherical perforation is stronger as might
be expected.
For the case considered above (p _/S.. = 0.45
and S/S V 0.8), the open hole compltign yields
immediately if C/S < 0.33 according to Figure 4.
If C/S.. = 0.6, the'yield pressure is p /S.. = 0.16
for .S..YS.. = 0.8 and p /S.. 0.05 for S./Sj. = 0.7.
v w v [.1 v
In ths case, the open hole completion is stronger
than the hemispherical perforation. However, this
will not always be the case as seen from Figures 2
and 4.
From Figures 2 to 4, we see that a high ratio
of horizontal to vertical in-situ stress (S./S V > 1)
has an adverse effect on yield pressures. Pot ex-
ample, if S../S.. 1.4 and p /S.. -- 0.45, then yield
occurs immediately if C/S 0v. 75 for the hemispher-
ical perforation and if CfS V < 1.17 for the open
hole completion. Open hole completion may not be
advisable in such cases.
The case of abnormally high reservoir pressure
also can be examined with the dimensionless plots of
Figures 2 to 4. For example, if p /S.. -- 0.8 and
S./S. -- 0.9, then yield occurs imWeditely if C/S V
<n 0.18 for the hemispherical perforation and C/S v
< 0.10 for the open hole completion. In general
less formation strength is needed for initial prod-
uction from abnormally pressured reservoirs than
from normally pressured reservoirs. However, deple-
tion may have a larger effect in abnormally pressured
reservoirs by decreasing S H as indicated by equa-
tion (13).
Finally, we note that dimensionless plots
such as Figures 2 to 4 provide a convenient method
of presenting field data on completion strength.
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We consider a disk of radius R and thickness 2h
raised to a uniform pressure p. The disk is part of
an unlimited homogenous isotropic poroelastic med-
ium. We follow a method given by Timoshenko and
Goodier (1951) to obtain a solution near r = 0.
A particular solution of (4) for displacements
u. can be written as
u i = ,i (A-i)
V2 = CmP, C = /2G (A-2) m
We consider a uniform pressure field of the form
p = const., if 0 < r < R, I zl < h
p = 0, otherwise (A-3)
In the present problem, = (r,z) and by the method
of Hankel transfor!n_(Seddon, 1951), we find that
(r,z) = (z) Jo (r) d (A-4)
CR [-h
= 3 cosh z- 1] Ji(R), [z[ < h
Cm9 sinh h J1 (R), > h
The displacements can be obtained in integral form
from (A-4) using (A-i) and the stresses follow from
equation (3). The displacements u and u and the
stresses o and o are continuou at [z = h as
required. Zince t stresses and displacements
approach zero as r + and ]z[ + , the particular
solution is the complete solution for this problem.
The integrals in the solution can be expressed
in terms of elliptic integrals and numerical tabula-
tions are available (Eason et al., 1955). We do
not pursue this here since our main interest is the
neighborhood of r = 0 where the completion is
located. The stresses obtained can be considered
as corrections to the in-situ stresses in this
region. On expanding the Bessel functions about
r = 0 and evaluating known integrals, we obtain
the following approximate expressions for change in
o = o e =-up [1- 1 r i f (z) ]
^ 1
= - - uP f (z)
z 2
h+z h-z
f (z) = 2 +
2[(h+z) + R2] 1/2 2[(h-z) 2 + R2] 1/2
with an error of the form
(: if h > R
*The symbol g (x) means that g (x)/x - constant as
For a thin reservoir (h << R), (A-5) reduces to
r 2R
In this case, pressure depletion hs a significant
effect on the horizontal stresses _ and om^,but
a negligible effect on the %ertical'stressUo . This
is reasonable since expansion can readily occur
vertically, but not horizontally.
The limiting case of a thick disk also can be
considered and the plane strain solution is obtain-
ed. Also, it is possible to include the effect of "
a free surface without essential difficulty. The
effect of radially variable pressure can be consi-
dered by means of the Duhamel integral. Alter-
natively, the effect of variable pressure and a
free surface can be treated by the method of
Green's function as done by Geertsma (1973) for an
infinitesimally thin disk.
750 I
C :500
1/3 1/2
To= 50, a= 1.0
To:100, a :0.8
o I I
o 500 lOOO
Fig. 1 - Experimental data (Material A) of Antheunis et al. (1976) interpreted by elasticity theory
and the extended Mises yield function.
0.5 i
1.0 S./Sv
Fig. 2 - Dimensionless yield pressure versus dimensionless strength for a hemispherical perforation
umder the parabolic (Murrell) yield functiom (q 0, - 0.2).
1.0 Sm/Sv
mmmm mmmm m mmm m m
m m m m mmm mmmm mmm m m m
m m
o 0.5 1.o 1.5
Fig. 3 - Dimensionless yield pressure versus dimensionless strength for a long cylindrical perforation
under the parabolic (Hurtell) yield function (q = O, = 0.2).
1.0: S./Sv _,4 I 1.6
mm m mm ,
o 0.5 1.o 1.5
Fig. 4 - Dimensionless yield pressure versus dimensionless strength for an open hole completion under
the parabolic (Murrell) yield function (q = O, v - 0.2).