Dynamics of Matrix-Fracture Coupling During Shale Gas Production
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In this work, a dynamic permeability model for organic-rich shale matrix is constructed and implemented into a flow simulation to investigate the impact on production. Effective stress and molecular transport effects on the permeability are considered during the flow in the matrix. Using a sector model with a single hydraulically-induced fracture, we investigate the dynamic nature of fracture-matrix coupling during the first year of production. The proposed apparent permeability shows improved transport near the fracture due to adsorption capacity of the rock and molecular transport of the adsorbed phase. This fosters drainage and leads eventually to a larger cumulative production. Away from the fracture, however, within the region of depletion, sensitivity to the stress is more pronounced which may impair the local permeability and reduce the production. Overall the shale matrix typically yields more fluid than that with the constant-permeability case. When the fracture-matrix coupling is considered during the production, an infinite conductivity fracture has negligible effect on the production trends, and that production optimization efforts should focus to considerations to improve the flow rates in the matrix.
Wasaki, Asana (2015). Dynamics of Matrix-Fracture Coupling During Shale Gas Production. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from