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Hydraulic Stimulation Optimization of the Permian Basin’s Lower San Andres Residual Oil Zone

Cunningham, Clark M.
The Permian Basin is a legacy field within North America that has over 85 years of production. When operating in a legacy field, it is not uncommon to operate near a well that could be fifty years old or older. Many of these older wells were constructed at a time when regulations for safety and environment were not nearly as strict as they are today. As these new fields are discovered and developed, it is critical during the development plan to ensure that older wells nearby do not create a hazard to the new well or the environment around them. The primary target of this research is determining whether or not the stimulation plan for a new horizontal well in the San Andres Formation will impact the older wells in the section and optimize the production from the stimulation. In order to achieve both of these goals, GOHFER software was utilized to determine fracture length and production post treatment. Nearby wellbores were used to create a lithology profile for the fracture simulator. Adjacent wells targeting the same play were to mimic a pump schedule and create a production model that matched what the field was capable of. Various stimulation designs were generated in the GOHFER simulator and resulting production was analyzed. After evaluation the optimum design, was recommended. The optimum design could both avoid any potential hazardous wells and optimize the production for the region.