Laboratory hydraulic fracturing tests of rock samples with water, carbon dioxide, and slickwater
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Publication date: 2017-09-30
Archives of Civil Engineering 2017;63(3):139-148
Hydraulic fracturing of rocks boosts the production rate by increasing the fracture-face surface area through the use of a pressurized liquid. Complex stress distribution and magnitude are the main factors that hinder the use of information gathered from in situ hydraulic fracturing in other locations. Laboratory tests are a good method for precisely determining the characteristics of these processes. One of the most important parameters is breakdown pressure, defined as the wellbore pressure necessary to induce a hydraulic fracture. Therefore, the main purpose of this investigation is to verify fracture resistance of rock samples fractured with the assistance of the most popular industry fluids. The experiments were carried out using a stand designed specifically for laboratory hydraulic fracturing. Repeatable results with a relative error within the range of 6-11% prove that the experimental methodology was correct. Moreover, the obtained results show that fracturing pressure depends significantly on fluid type. In the case of a water test, the fracturing pressure was 7.1±0.4 MPa. A similar result was achieved for slickwater, 7.5±0.7 MPa; however, a much lower value (4.7±0.5 MPa) was registered in the case of carbon dioxide.
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