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Publication# Reservoir stimulation’s effect on depletion-induced seismicity

Abstract

Depletion-induced seismicity can pose a problem in some fluid-producing subsurface reservoirs, in some cases requiring production rate control in order to limit the seismicity. This study investigates the use of reservoir stimulation to reduce the depletion-induced seismicity rate. Depletion-induced stress and pore pressure changes are evaluated in a shale cap rock, sandstone reservoir, and shale underburden system, which contains a horizontal well, all modeled in plane strain conditions. The seismicity rate is then predicted based on an existing seismicity model and is found to be dependent on the direction the well is drilled in with respect to the principal stresses. The case where the reservoir has first been stimulated is compared to the case where stimulation has not been performed (using the same production rates) for normal, reverse, and strike-slip faulting stress regimes. Seismicity is reduced in the case of reservoir stimulation for both reverse and strike-slip faulting stress regimes. The seismicity rate is only slightly reduced for the normal faulting stress regime. Stimulation also increases the distance that changes in pore pressure dominate over poroelastic stress changes in the reservoir. Further, it is found that the optimal orientation of a horizontal well, in terms of induced seismicity, is parallel to the minimum principal stress in normal faulting stress regimes and parallel to the maximum principal stress in reverse faulting stress regimes. The orientation of a horizontal well determines where the seismicity is located in a strike-slip faulting stress regime.

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Related concepts (34)

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Plane stress

In continuum mechanics, a material is said to be under plane stress if the stress vector is zero across a particular plane. When that situation occurs over an entire element of a structure, as is often the case for thin plates, the stress analysis is considerably simplified, as the stress state can be represented by a tensor of dimension 2 (representable as a 2×2 matrix rather than 3×3). A related notion, plane strain, is often applicable to very thick members.

Stress–strain analysis

Stress–strain analysis (or stress analysis) is an engineering discipline that uses many methods to determine the stresses and strains in materials and structures subjected to forces. In continuum mechanics, stress is a physical quantity that expresses the internal forces that neighboring particles of a continuous material exert on each other, while strain is the measure of the deformation of the material. In simple terms we can define stress as the force of resistance per unit area, offered by a body against deformation.

Cauchy stress tensor

In continuum mechanics, the Cauchy stress tensor , true stress tensor, or simply called the stress tensor is a second order tensor named after Augustin-Louis Cauchy. The tensor consists of nine components that completely define the state of stress at a point inside a material in the deformed state, placement, or configuration. The tensor relates a unit-length direction vector e to the traction vector T(e) across an imaginary surface perpendicular to e: or, The SI units of both stress tensor and traction vector are N/m2, corresponding to the stress scalar.

Jean-François Molinari, Brice Tanguy Alphonse Lecampion, Guillaume Anciaux, Nicolas Richart, Emil Gallyamov

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2023, ,

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