The effects of acid contact time and rock surfaces on acid fracture conductivity
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The conductivity created in acid fracturing is a competition between two phenomena: etching of the rock surface and weakening of the rock. This study presents experimental results of acid fracturing conductivity experiments with polymer gelled acid, while varying contact time and rock type. The experiments were conducted in a laboratory facility properly scaled from field to laboratory conditions to account for the hydrodynamic effects that take place in the field. The rocks of study were Indiana limestone, San Andres dolomite and Texas Cream chalk. Our results illustrate that acid fracturing conductivity is governed by the etching pattern of the rock surface and influenced by the hardness of the rock. If channels are created, the fracture is more likely to retain conductivity after closure. The hardness of the rock is the dominating factor to determine the conductivity response when no channeling is present. Among the rocks tested, Texas Cream chalk had the lowest hardness measurement before and after acidizing and the fracture closed at a much lower stress compared with limestone and dolomite. Dolomite had the highest conductivity under all closure stresses even without a channeling pattern. Additionally, it was observed that a higher reduction in rock strength at the contact points for dolomite yielded lower conductivity after closure. The effects of hardness variation on conductivity are higher in dolomite than in limestone and chalk. It is apparent that longer contact times do not always provide higher conductivity after closure.
Melendez Castillo, Maria Georgina (2007). The effects of acid contact time and rock surfaces on acid fracture conductivity. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from