Fracture characterization in the Delaware Basin using wide-azimuth seismic data

Colin M. Sayers*, Lennert D. den Boer, Adam Koesoemadinata, Edan Gofer, Michael Shoemaker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Because hydraulic fractures propagating in unconventional reservoirs interact mechanically with preexisting natural fractures, hydraulic fracture complexity depends on horizontal stress anisotropy. Although open or partially open natural fractures may contribute to production, they may also provide pathways for water to flow into a well during production and may lead to loss of wellbore fluid while drilling. Understanding the spatial distribution and orientation of natural fracture networks is, thus, important in optimizing drilling and production. Fortunately, open or partially open natural fractures produce azimuthal variations in seismic reflection amplitude, allowing fracture orientations to be inferred from seismic inversion. We present an example of applying this approach in the Delaware Basin, illustrating the construction of a discrete fracture network (DFN) from prestack inversion of wide-azimuth seismic data. The DFN, thus derived, helps explain losses encountered while drilling a lateral well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3225-3229
Number of pages5
JournalSEG Technical Program Expanded Abstracts
StatePublished - 10 Aug 2019
Externally publishedYes
EventSociety of Exploration Geophysicists International Exposition and 89th Annual Meeting, SEG 2019 - San Antonio, United States
Duration: 15 Sep 201920 Sep 2019


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