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Fracturing a High-Permeability Oil Well at Prudhoe Bay, Alaska (SPE 14372)


Hannah proposed that high conductivity fractures may prevent, or at least delay the formation of CaCO3 scale by reducing the pressure drop in the wellbore area.


This paper details a successful fracturing of a high permeability oil well at Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. The treatment was complicated by the zone’s proximity to water, poor leak-off control and the need for a large quantity of proppant.

A calibration treatment was performed prior to the proppant-laden treatment to verify the leak-off coefficient and to determine height growth tendencies. This treatment indicated a grossly higher fluid loss rate than the pre-job estimate and a more conservative treatment was designed. Temperature/gamma logs indicated the redesigned treatment would not propagate to the water zone.

The treatment was pumped successfully and the well cleaned up and responded to the treatment with a productivity increase of 1.33 out of a theoretical maximum of 1.6. This is considered good for a fracture of such modest dimensions.

Author(s): R.R. Hannah, Sohio Petroleum Co.; E.J. Walker, Sohio Alaska Petroleum Co.

Paper Number: SPE 14372

URL: https://www.onepetro.org/conference-paper/SPE-14372-MS



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