(677d) Investigation of Scaling As a Means for Decreased Petroleum Production from the Utica/Point Pleasant Unconventional Play
Ohio University (OHIO) is investigating scale formation as a means for the large decrease in production seen in unconventional wells, with a particular focus in the oil window of the Utica-Point Pleasant (UPP) Shale. In this work, shale-fluid interactions is investigated using experimental trials in a batch reactor at reservoir conditions. The effect of shale to fluid ratios to control reaction rates and scale inhibitors to prevent scale is also investigated. Pre- and post-trial analysis of the shale surfaces are performed using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) paired with Energy-dispersive X-Ray spectroscopy (EDS) and Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS), and fluids are analyzed using Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES) and Ion Chromatography (IC). Preliminary results in the absence of scale inhibitor indicate iron is a major concern for precipitation in the UPP oil window. These iron based scales are even formed at low pH values found in the hydraulic fracturing fluid chemistry. Additionally, Barium and strontium were found to be non-reactive. Furthermore, the effect of various commercially available scale inhibitors and different shale to fluid ratios will be presented. In addition, modeling of the shale-fluid interactions using Geochemist Workbench will be performed and presented.
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