Experimental study on hydraulic fracture propagation in heterogeneous glutenite rock

Xian Shi, Yong Qin, Qi Gao, Shun Liu, Hongxing Xu, Tianxi Yu

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2 Citations (Web of Science)


To understand the fracture behavior and discuss the possibility of the reservoir-stimulated volume concept on glutenite rock, true triaxial hydraulic fracturing experiments were performed on glutenite rocks with acoustic emission monitoring. Experimental results indicate that a curved hydraulic fracture (HF) can be created. In addition, in situ stress plays the greatest role in HF propagation direction regardless of gravel characteristics; however, the gravel with high mechanical strength could affect hydraulic fracture path locally. Intense fluctuate extension pressure and discrete surged acoustic emission (AE) events not only occur during the breakdown stage but also during the shut-in stage, indicating embedded gravels tend to influence HF process. The breakdown pressure is the highest for sample with low horizontal stress difference, while breakdown pressure for large-size sample with small gravel numbers is the lowest. The highest AE amplitude can be observed for sample where fracture positions on gravels are at the initial stage, while continuous high AE amplitude is observed for samples with high pump rates during the entire process, indicating intense fracture and gravel interactions. Moreover, four possible interaction behaviors between HF and gravels, namely, fracture penetration, deflection, diversion and arrest, can be identified near wellbore and far-field failure zones. In general, fracture penetration behavior is exclusively observed within the near wellbore failure zone. Additionally, the fracture width for a penetration fracture is the largest due to high fracturing energy, while fracture diversion and arrest exhibit the smallest fracture width. Given the existence of gravels, branch fractures are difficult to merge with residual fracturing energy. An extremely coarse HF surface and tortuous HF path can be found for all samples; thus, the selection of a suitable pump rate and fracturing fluid is necessary to migrate near wellbore tortuosity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number211673
JournalGeoenergy Science and Engineering
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023


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