[URTeC 2024] Forecasting Production Loss for Delayed Secondary Bench Development in the Midland Basin

Forecasting Production Loss for Delayed Secondary Bench Development in the Midland Basin

Technical Paper Details::
Theme 9: Reserves Estimation and Production Forecasting
Topic: Forecasting Production Loss for Delayed Secondary Bench Development in the Midland Basin

Authors: A. Cui1, D. Niederhut*1, B. Davis1, 1. Novi Labs.

Abstract:

While it is generally understood that existing well depletion affects future well developments negatively, estimating the production impacts remains a challenge, particularly when newer developments occur in a different formation. This study seeks to use machine learning (ML) models to quantify the production losses resulting from delayed development of a secondary bench in an unconventional reservoir compared to concurrent development with primary benches.

Our approach involved creating causal inference ML models tailored to assess the isolated effects of spacing on production forecasts in the Midland basin. Using these ML models, we forecasted two scenarios: 1) simultaneous development of a secondary bench alongside primary benches, and 2) delaying secondary bench development 3 years after the primary development.

Through the comparison of forecasts between the two scenarios of simultaneous development against delayed development, our findings reveal that secondary bench interior wells on a pad can incur up to 40% production losses on a 3-year cumulative oil basis. We further investigate how the magnitude of parent-child degradation varies with several well parameters.

As the number of greenfield development opportunities dwindle, operators are increasingly revisiting previously drilled locations and redeveloping secondary formations to extract additional hydrocarbons. Implementing the insights from this study will enable engineers to assess acreage value more accurately and optimize pad economics, ensuring informed decision-making during both the acreage acquisition and subsequent development planning phases.

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