New Algorithm Finds Production Potential for Shale Plays

by Michelle Corbet  on Monday, Aug. 4, 2014 3:18 pm  

A pair of oil industry consultants have devised an algorithm that provides new estimates on shale gas play production potential based on Estimated Ultimate Recovery (EUR), the approximate quantity of oil or gas that can potentially be recovered from a well or reserve. 

Each of the country’s five main producing shale gas plays, Barnett (Texas), Fayetteville (Arkansas), Haynesville (Louisiana), Marcellas (Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and New York) and Woodford (Oklahoma), have reached the onset of production decline with the exception of the Marcellas Shale. 

Using an algorithm to find the production potential for each shale play, paired with gas-in-place values estimated by the U.S. Geological Survey, researchers Rafael Sandrea and George Peels found the expected recovery factors for the five major shale plays range from 4 percent (Haynesville) to 11 percent (Fayetteville) with an average of 5.4 percent. 

The U.S. Energy Information Administration previously estimated recovery efficiency for all shale gas plays is 11 percent, or nearly double those of the researchers’ findings, in its 2012 Annual Energy Outlook.  

Researchers said the algorithm provides new estimates on production potential from EUR estimates, giving key insight for production planning and infrastructure.  

Sandrea is president of the Tulsa-based international petroleum consulting firm IPC Petroleum Consultants Inc. Peels is an independent information management consultant. The pair published their findings in Oil & Gas Journal on Monday.  



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