Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How long does it take to make a natural fracture?

Date:
August 4, 2014
Source:
Geological Society of America
Summary:
How long does it take for natural Earth processes to form hydraulic fractures? Is the formation driven by sediment compaction, oil and gas generation, or something else? What role do these natural fractures play in modern hydraulic fracturing production? A new study addresses these questions.

How long does it take for natural Earth processes to form hydraulic fractures? Is the formation driven by sediment compaction, oil and gas generation, or something else? What role do these natural fractures play in modern hydraulic fracturing production? A new GSA BULLETIN study by Andrαs Fall and colleagues from The University of Texas at Austin, Virginia Tech, and ExxonMobil addresses these questions, and the article is open-access online.

Related Articles


The process of fracture formation by a natural increase in pore-fluid pressure has previously been referred to as natural hydraulic fracturing. Researchers work to understand these fractures through examination of fluid inclusions trapped in minerals within the fractures. In this study, Fall and colleagues conclude that natural hydraulic fractures formed over time spans of 33 to 35 million years, driven by the slow generation of natural gas.

Natural fractures provide important pathways for the flow of water, natural gas, and oil in geologic formations, including unconventional tight-gas sandstone oil and gas reservoirs targeted for production by hydraulic fracturing. These fractures play an essential role during well completion and production by connecting pores in the reservoir rock storing oil and gas to the hydraulic fracture and wellbore that allow production. "Sweet spots," or zones of higher than average permeability, have been attributed to the presence of these open fractures.

Successful prediction of zones of increased fracture abundance provides an opportunity to minimize drilling and completion costs as well as the environmental footprint of production. Successful prediction of natural fracture occurrence and their hydraulic properties requires models of fracture formation that are based on realistic mechanical, hydraulic, and chemical principles that can be tested against core, well-log, and production data.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Geological Society of America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. A. Fall, P. Eichhubl, R. J. Bodnar, S. E. Laubach, J. S. Davis. Natural hydraulic fracturing of tight-gas sandstone reservoirs, Piceance Basin, Colorado. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 2014; DOI: 10.1130/B31021.1

Cite This Page:

Geological Society of America. "How long does it take to make a natural fracture?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 August 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140804151229.htm>.
Geological Society of America. (2014, August 4). How long does it take to make a natural fracture?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 26, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140804151229.htm
Geological Society of America. "How long does it take to make a natural fracture?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140804151229.htm (accessed February 26, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Winter Storm Means Dangerous Driving in South

Winter Storm Means Dangerous Driving in South

AP (Feb. 26, 2015) — A new winter storm is stretching across the south, making travel treacherous throughout the region. (Feb. 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New York City Surrounded by Ice Floes

New York City Surrounded by Ice Floes

AP (Feb. 25, 2015) — The freezing temperatures that have plagued much of the eastern U.S. haven&apos;t spared New York City. The waterways around the island of Manhattan are filled with ice. (Feb. 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Widespread Flooding in Northern Bolivia

Raw: Widespread Flooding in Northern Bolivia

AP (Feb. 25, 2015) — Bolivian Vice President Alvaro Garcia surveyed severe flood damage in the northern province of Pando, as people were evacuated from partially submerged houses by boat. (Feb. 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Amazon Keeps Its Green Thanks To The Sahara Desert

The Amazon Keeps Its Green Thanks To The Sahara Desert

Newsy (Feb. 25, 2015) — Satellite data shows the Amazon rainforest supports its lush flora with a little help from Sahara Desert dust. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins