Ceramic Proppant 101: The Quality Advantage

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Advantages of Ceramic Proppants

Advantages of Ceramic Proppants

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  • 1. Ceramic Proppant 101:The Quality Advantage
  • 2. The Benefits of Hydraulic Fractures Provides reservoir contact − Fluid driven parameters: rate, viscosity and volume − Proppant driven parameters: volume Provides flow capacity (conductivity) − Fluid driven parameters: rate and viscosity (and gel loading) − Proppant driven parameters: permeability and width Proppant is the conductive pathway from the reservoir to the wellbore
  • 3. Fracture Conductivity cf = kf * wf wf kf Factors that affect….  Permeability (kf): Proppant (size, strength, shape), fines, gel damage….  Width (wf): Proppant (density, concentration, embedment), gel filter cake…
  • 4. Proppant Types and their Conductivity Highest Production, EUR, ROI Highest Conductivity Engineered, Manufactured Product High strength (minimizes crush) Tier 1 - High Conductivity Uniform size and shape Ceramic (maximizes frac porosity and permeability) Thermal resistant (durable, minimizes degradation) Medium strength Tier 2 - Medium Conductivity Irregular size and shape Resin Coated Sand Low strength Tier 3 - Low Conductivity Irregular size and shape Sand Naturally Occurring Product Chart Prepared by and Property of CARBO Ceramics
  • 5. All Proppants are Not the Same in Each Tier Ceramics − LWC/IDC/HDCResin-Coated Sand − Tight/Broad Sieve− Precured/Curable− Substrate Strength − Tunnel/Rotary Kilns− Substrate Sieve − Alumina Content− % Resin Coating − Internal Porosity− Resin/Coating Technology − Shape − Raw Material Uncoated Sand − Strength − Sieve − Shape − White vs Brown vs River Sand
  • 6. Are all ceramics created equal? Supply shortage of quality ceramics has promoted an influx of lower quality ceramics into the marketplace High quality ceramic proppants provide superior conductivity compared to many low quality ceramics through: − Superior shape • Spherical, smooth proppants maximize porosity and streamline fluid flow. − Uniform particle size • Well-sorted, uniform grains provide large pore bodies and ample flow capacity. − Strong particles • Resist crush and compaction. Primarily caused by inferior raw materials and quality control
  • 7. Ceramic Density Differences ASG Bulk Density Proppant Type (g/cc) (g/cc) Light Weight Ceramic 2.72 1.62 ® ® ® HYDROPROP , ECONOPROP , CARBOLITE Intermediate Density Ceramic 3.27 1.84 ® ® CARBOPROP , CARBOISP High Density Ceramic 3.56 2.00 ® CARBOHSP
  • 8. Raw Material Variation 90 All samples from 68-85% Al2O3 North Dakota 80 All classified as Intermediate 70 Percent Al2O3 (%) Density Ceramic Tremendous 60 variation in raw material quality 50 40 30 20
  • 9. Raw Material Variation 3.50 All samples from 3.40 Intermediate Density Ceramics Apparent Specific Gravity (ASG), g/cc North Dakota 3.30 Raw material variation leads to 3.20 large variability 3.10 in ASG. 3.00 2.90 2.80 2.70 2.60 2.50
  • 10. Variable Shapes, Size Distribution and Coloration High Quality LWC Various Low Quality Chinese Proppants
  • 11. Variability Within a Single Broker Ceramic proppants imported by the same broker
  • 12. Variability within a Region (N. Dakota) Whole pellet views of several imported ceramic products found inHigh Quality LWC North Dakota
  • 13. Internal Porosity (Reduced Strength) High Quality LWC Various Chinese Intermediate Density Ceramics Bottom Row Represents Whole Pellet Cross Sections 13 Field Samples #1, #2, #3 taken in North Dakota from 3 Chinese Suppliers
  • 14. Inferior Supply Chain QA/QCCourtesy
  • 15. It All Leads to Inferior Performance Conductivity Results 10000 Semi-log scale Five different Chinese IDC Baseline Conductivity (mD-ft) proppant samples 20-100% difference 1000 in performance at 10,000 psi 100 0 2000 4000 6000 8000 10000 12000 14000 Stress (psi)
  • 16. It All Leads to Inferior Performance 3500 Same five Chinese 3000 IDC proppant Baseline Conductivity at 10,000 psi, mD-ft samples 2500 20-100% difference in performance 2000 >50% lower than a high quality IDC 1500 Which one will be brought to your 1000 location? 500 0 Import #1 Import #2 Import #3 Import #4 Import #5 Quality IDC
  • 17. Lightweight Ceramics Low Quality LWC Premium LWC
  • 18. LWC Conductivity Comparison North Dakota 20/40 Imported LWC Field Sample Evaluation 10000 20/40 Samples Quality LWC Baseline Conductivity (mD-ft) provides 2-3x the conductivity at 10,000 psi as a low quality 1000 imported LWC Quality Premium LWC Quality Economy LWC Imported LWC A Imported LWC B 100 0 2000 4000 6000 8000 10000 12000 Stress (psi)
  • 19. Production Impacts of Ceramic Quality - Bakken Bakken Study 10 wells in close proximity ® − 6 with quality LWC (CARBOECONOPROP ) − 4 with imported Chinese IDC LWC wells provided: − 19% higher 30 day cums − 40% greater apparent fracture length − 54% higher EUR as forecast by operator’s independent appraiser
  • 20. Process Quality Control and Assurance A quality ceramic proppant will be engineered for uniform size and shape, strength and long term durability QC/QA are critical to the delivery of a quality ceramic proppant  Ore resources  Manufacturing facilities/processes  Logistics/Distribution networks  Rigorous testing of the final product is paramount Quality Assurance “from the mine to the wellsite”
  • 21. Summary Proppant selection is critical in unconventional reservoirs Realistic conductivity should drive proppant selection There is a wide range of quality in imported ceramic proppants – QC is critical − Proppant Quality Matters Quality ceramic proppants provide superior production results compared to inferior imported ceramics
  • 22. Final thought… Sales Meter Wellbore Frac Hydrocarbons  Wellbore Specifications – Wellhead, casing, tubing, packers, etc – Specify grade, pressure service/rating, fluid service, etc  Fracture Stimulation – What are you specifying for your proppant?