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AAPG Bulletin

Abstract

AAPG Bulletin, V. 88, No. 1 (2004), P. 99-113.

Copyright copy2004. The American Association of Petroleum Geologists. All rights reserved.

Dual-lateral horizontal wells successfully target bypassed pay in the San Andres Formation, Vacuum field, New Mexico

Matthew J. Pranter,1 Neil F. Hurley,2 Thomas L. Davis,3 Michael A. Raines,4 Scott C. Wehner5

1Department of Geological Sciences, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, Colorado 80309; [email protected]
2Department of Geology and Geological Engineering, Colorado School of Mines, Golden, Colorado 80401; [email protected]
3Department of Geophysics, Colorado School of Mines, Golden, Colorado 80401; [email protected]
4Kinder Morgan CO2 Company, L.P., Midland, Texas 79701; [email protected]
5Kinder Morgan CO2 Company, L.P., Midland, Texas 79701; [email protected]

AUTHORS

Matt Pranter is an assistant professor of geological sciences at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He received a B.S. degree in geology from Oklahoma State University (1987), an M.S. degree in geology from Baylor University (1989), a B.S. degree in geological engineering from the Colorado School of Mines (1996), and a Ph.D. in geology from the Colorado School of Mines (1999). He currently serves as an AAPG associate editor, is a member of the AAPG Distinguished Lecture Committee and is a past member of the AAPG Foundation Grants-in-Aid Committee. He was previously a senior research geologist with ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company and a geologist with Conoco Inc. His research interests are in reservoir geology and geophysics, sedimentary geology, and reservoir modeling. He is a member of AAPG, SEPM, Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Society of Petroleum Engineers, Geological Society of America, European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers, and Society of Petrophysicists and Well Log Analysts.

Neil Hurley is a professor of geology at the Colorado School of Mines. He received B.S. degrees in geology and petroleum engineering from the University of Southern California (1976), an M.S. degree in geology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison (1978), and a Ph.D. in geology from the University of Michigan (1986). He is a past editor of AAPG and has been an AAPG distinguished lecturer. Specialties include carbonate geology and reservoir characterization. He is a member of AAPG, Society of Petroleum Engineers, Society of Exploration Geophysicists, SEPM, European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers, and Society of Petrophysicists and Well Log Analysts.

Tom Davis is currently a professor of geophysics at the Colorado School of Mines and has 29 years of teaching and research experience. He is the founder and codirector of the Reservoir Characterization Project, an industry-funded consortium in its 18th year of applying multicomponent seismic data to improve hydrocarbon recovery. He holds a Ph.D. in geophysical engineering from the Colorado School of Mines, an M.Sc. degree in geophysics from the University of Calgary, and a B.E. degree in geological engineering (geophysics option) from the University of Saskatchewan. Memberships include AAPG, Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Denver Geophysical Society, European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers, Rocky Mountain Association of Geologists, and Society of Exploration Geophysicists.

Michael Raines is a geologist with Kinder Morgan CO2 Company, L.P. He has a B.S. degree in geology from West Texas State University and an M.S. degree in geology from the University of Oklahoma. His professional interests include reservoir characterization, tertiary recovery, horizontal drilling, earth science education, multicomponent seismic, time-lapse seismic monitoring, and carbonate systems. He is involved with AAPG, West Texas Geological Society, and Permian Basin Section-SEPM.

Scott Wehner is a senior engineer with Kinder Morgan CO2 Company, L.P. located in Midland, Texas. He was previously with Texaco. His 22-year career has been in the Permian basin of west Texas and southeast New Mexico. His past 18 years have been devoted to the design, implementation, and/or management of CO2 projects. He has published various CO2-related papers and has one CO2 process patent. He is a past director of the Society of Petroleum Engineers and is a past Department of Energy Program Manager. He graduated from the University of Missouri, Rolla in 1980 with a B.Sc. degree in geological engineering.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

We thank the industry sponsors of the Colorado School of Mines Reservoir Characterization Project for funding and input to this study. The consortium members include AGIP, Amoco Production Company (now BP), Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, ARCO (now BP), Chevron Petroleum Technology Company (now ChevronTexaco), China National Petroleum Corporation, Compagnie Generale de Geophysique, Conoco Inc. (now ConocoPhillips), Dawson Geophysical Company, Exxon Production Research Company (now ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company), Gas Research Institute (now Gas Technology Institute), GeoQuest/Schlumberger/Geco, Golden Geophysical/Fairfield Industries, Grant Geophysical, Inc., Input/Output, Inc., INTEVEP, S.A., Japan National Oil Corporation, Landmark Graphics Corporation, Marathon Oil Company, Maxus Energy Corporation, Nambe Geophysical, Inc., Occidental Oil and Gas Corporation, Oyo Geospace Corporation, PanCanadian Petroleum Limited (now EnCana), Phillips Petroleum Company (now ConocoPhillips), Paradigm Geophysical (formerly CogniSeis), Shell EampP Technology Company, Discovery Bay Company (now Rock Solid Images), Silicon Graphics Corporation, Solid State Geophysical, Texaco Group, Inc. (now ChevronTexaco), Union Pacific Resources Company (now Anadarko Petroleum Corporation), UNOCAL/Sprint Energy, Western Geophysical, and Veritas DGC, Inc.

The study was also supported through research grants and funding from AAPG, Geological Society of America, Society of Professional Well Log Analysts (now Society of Petrophysicists and Well Log Analysts), and the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering at the Colorado School of Mines.

ABSTRACT

This case study of the San Andres Formation in the mature Vacuum field, New Mexico, shows how seismic data can be used to target bypassed pay with horizontal wells. These dual-lateral wells were the first attempt at horizontal development in the Vacuum San Andres field and in the San Andres Formation in New Mexico. The primary reservoir facies consist of ramp crest and outer ramp dolomitized peloidal packstones, skeletal and ooid grainstones, and fusulinid packstones. Vertical facies successions form numerous high-frequency carbonate depositional cycles and cycle sets that create distinct reservoir zones. Structural blocks created by small-scale faults (le25 ft [8 m] vertical displacement) and bypassed pay located in thin depositional cycles were identified with three-dimensional compressional-wave seismic amplitude and coherency volumes and well data and targeted using medium-radius horizontal wells. Horizontal wells penetrated fault blocks and depositional cycles that were not adequately drained by existing vertical wells.

Production curves show a significant increase in production from the horizontal wells and no interference with production from offset vertical wells. This suggests that the faults are partially sealing.

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