Evaluating Stimlation Effectiveness of the Bakken Fields Using Data Mining Techniques

Open Access
Udoh, Aniefiok S
Graduate Program:
Energy and Mineral Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
February 22, 2013
Committee Members:
  • Yilin Wang, Thesis Advisor/Co-Advisor
  • Bakken
  • data mining
  • hydraulic fracturing in the bakken
  • stimulation
  • effective stimulation
  • evaluating stimulation
  • statistical analysis
Hydraulic fracture treatment remains the most effective way to create conductive paths for increased flow of oil in unconventional reservoirs. North Dakota has seen tremendous increase in oil production due to hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling and became the second largest oil producing state in the USA with over 650,000 bbl/day produced in 2012. However, continued improvement of hydraulic fracture stimulation is needed and can benefit from evaluation of stimulation effectiveness. Such evaluation should account for formation heterogeneity, treatment parameters, well completion, and field operations. Methods for evaluating stimulation effectiveness include micro-seismic monitoring, fracture treatment analysis, production data analysis, and data mining. In this research, we first understood the geological properties of the Bakken formation and physical relationship of well performance and stimulation treatment through a complete literature review. We then reviewed 6,000 currently producing Bakken wells in North Dakota and then chose 150 wells with enough data for further engineering and statistical analysis to better understand the underlying correlations between production and stimulation. An economic analysis was conducted for six wells to help quantify the stimulation effectiveness based on economics. For the range of data observed, preliminary results show that the length of lateral drilled in the Bakken need not be greater than 6,000 feet. Optimal production rates were also observed to be between 45 and 60 bpm and proppant to fluid ratio between 1.5 and 3 lbs/gal. The new understanding generated from this work will help the industry understand and optimize well completion and stimulation in the Bakken formation.