Optimizing Development Strategies to Increase Reserves in Unconventional Gas Reservoirs
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The ever increasing energy demand brings about widespread interest to rapidly, profitably and efficiently develop unconventional resources, among which tight gas sands hold a significant portion. However, optimization of development strategies in tight gas fields is challenging, not only because of the wide range of depositional environments and large variability in reservoir properties, but also because the evaluation often has to deal with a multitude of wells, limited reservoir information, and time and budget constraints. Unfortunately, classical full-scale reservoir evaluation cannot be routinely employed by small- to medium-sized operators, given its timeconsuming and expensive nature. In addition, the full-scale evaluation is generally built on deterministic principles and produces a single realization of the reservoir, despite the significant uncertainty faced by operators. This work addresses the need for rapid and cost-efficient technologies to help operators determine optimal well spacing in highly uncertain and risky unconventional gas reservoirs. To achieve the research objectives, an integrated reservoir and decision modeling tool that fully incorporates uncertainty was developed. Monte Carlo simulation was used with a fast, approximate reservoir simulation model to match and predict production performance in unconventional gas reservoirs. Simulation results were then fit with decline curves to enable direct integration of the reservoir model into a Bayesian decision model. These integrated tools were applied to the tight gas assets of Unconventional Gas Resources Inc. in the Berland River area, Alberta, Canada.