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Understanding Sonic Data in Unconventional Reservoirs

Speaker: Jennifer Market - Weatherford Acoustics Advisor

Date: Wednesday, March 21st, 2018


Time: 11:30 am -1:00 pm

Location: Weatherford Lab

5200 North Sam Houston Parkway West Suite 500 

Houston, TX, 77086

Parking: One story building with surface parking.  Visitors are requested to reverse park, note their license plate number and sign in at the main reception.


RSVP by noon, Monday before meeting Time: Lunch 11:30, Presentation at 12:00


Cost: $15-industry professionals/$10-students

Acoustic velocities are one of the key measurements for production enhancement and increased drilling efficiency in unconventional reservoirs, but the environment can present considerable complications to accurate data interpretation. Because these wells are often produced by way of horizontal boreholes through shales, the sonic logs respond to intrinsic shale anisotropy, natural fractures, drilling induced stress, and nearby beds above or below the target formation. These intertwined effects frequently lead to misinterpretations such as picking a compressional slowness from an approaching bed but the shear slowness from the current formation, leading to odd (and confusing) geomechanical results.  Other times, shale anisotropy is inadvertently assumed to be linked to natural fracture networks.  Interpretations from different vendors, and even different analysts within the same team might vary greatly due to different processing methods.  Thus, we need to consider the various aspects of sonic response in horizontal wellbore through unconventional reservoirs and proscribe a workflow and quality control regime to ensure consistent and valid results.
This presentation begins with a review of sonic measurements in unconventional reservoirs, paying particular attention to concepts such as the depth of detection of nearby beds and distinguishing shale anisotropy from fracture or stress-induced anisotropy.  A discussion of wireline and azimuthal LWD data acquisition methods follows, with details aboutoptimising data acquisition in unconventional reservoirs. Then, a workflow is described, with the goal of correctly determining the compressional and shear velocities for the bed in which the tool resides as well as the nearby beds. Several field examples will be examined in detail, describing the correct methods for interpretation and the common pitfalls.  Examples of how incorrectly interpreted results impact petrophysics and production optimisation studies will be shown.   Finally, a discussion of the applications of sonic data in unconventional reservoirs will be illustrated with field examples.
Jennifer Market is the global acoustics advisor for Weatherford.  Her role involves acoustic data processing and interpretation, along with development of software and new application. She also provides industry training seminars to widen the understanding of acoustic data acquisition and applications.  She has 20 years’ experience in borehole acoustics, working in service companies and as a consultant to develop enhanced  acoustics tools and applications.  She frequently publishes articles for both SPWLA and SPE and was an SPWLA lecturer in 2008-2009, 2011-2012, 2015-2017 as well as a SPE Distinguished lecturer 2014-2105. She served as the 2016-2017 SPWLA VP of Technology and currently serves as the SPWLA VP Finance 2017-2019.