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Evaluation of and New Completion Recommendations for a Fractured, Crystalline, Igneous Reservoir, Texas Panhandle

Bert A. Weimer, Mark S. Manwaring

In the Panhandle field of Texas, the lowest stratigraphic producing formation is a crystalline basement rock. The igneous rock is productive when it is naturally fractured sufficiently to hold hydrocarbons trapped in the same structure as the expansive Panhandle field. Research work to understand the crystalline reservoir better focused on the fracturing, mineralogy, and production potential of the basement interval.

This trap is a true fractured reservoir; it has no more than 1% primary porosity in the nonfractured rock. The mineralogy of the host rock and fracture-filling minerals was established from drill and core samples. The host rock is a complex of granodiorite, dacite, and gabbroic diorite. Scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, and optical work confirmed the occurrence of at least 12 secondary fracture-fill minerals. Fluid inclusion analysis established formation temperatures for many of the minerals and allowed postulation of a detailed sequence of formation.

The character of the fracture in differing host petrologies and the occurrence of clay minerals coating fracture surfaces were deemed to be critical factors in hydrocarbon production. New and specific enhancement treatments were designed for the subject reservoir, and these recommendations were used in a test well. Results from the test were favorable and appear to confirm the ideas formed from this work. The new recommended treatments are less expensive than current practices and indicate potential for greater ultimate recoveries of oil.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91037©1987 AAPG Southwest Section, Dallas, Texas, March 22-24, 1987.