Presenter: Mary Ellison, Geologist, MicroSeismic, Inc.
Date: September 17, 2013 at 10 AM CST
Title: Comparison of Fracture Planes in the Marcellus and Utica Shales
Summary: Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have opened up shale plays to new or continued production. Operators seeking to produce oil, gas, or condensate need to understand the natural and induced fracture patterns within the shales. Surface and near-surface microseismic monitoring allows for the identification of focal mechanisms which indicate the mode of rock failure within the shale. Additionally, as new shales in familiar basins, such as the Appalachian, become more profitable, patterns and similarities within the basin are crucial to understanding treatment and completion techniques. In this presentation, we show the surface array data collected in both the Marcellus and Utica Shales in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. In addition, we show a compilation of source mechanism orientations from each project as they are compared by county and by target formation. Results show that there are two orientations in the Marcellus that match with known fracture sets. The orientations in the Utica shale match one of the fracture sets in the Marcellus, but there is a third orientation that is not seen in the Marcellus shale.