Impacts of Landing Interval and Stage Timing on Multistage Horizontal Well Completions: Case Studies from the DJ Basin

Jennifer Miskimins

Jennifer Miskimins
Colorado School of Mines

Wednesday, February 17th, 2021 – 12:00 PM MST


Multistage hydraulic fracturing in horizontal wells is the completion method of choice in unconventional shale reservoirs. When pumped, hydraulic fracturing treatments can have significant impacts on one another between stages and between wells. This behavior, commonly referred to as “stress shadowing”, is not just a three-dimensional geometric growth issue, but is also four-dimensional when timing of the treatments is included. When multiple stacked pays are involved in a field development, the treatment impacts on one another are compounded even further.

This presentation will discuss two field case studies that evaluated the lateral landing locations and treatment timing of stacked horizontal wells in the Niobrara and Codell formations of the Denver-Julesburg (DJ) basin. The first example discusses a unique data set that involved the acquisition of 4D time-lapse seismic that was coupled together with a 3D geo-model and hydraulic fracture modeling of over 350 individual treatment stages in eleven wells (Alfataierge et al. 2019). The results of the data integration and modeling showed the importance of lateral landing location in the various stacked pay intervals and the impacts of potentially under-stimulated zones. The second example, also from the DJ basin, discusses the pumping stage sequence impacts in nine wells, two parent and seven child wells, treated with over 500 individual treatment stages (Abokhamseen 2019). This study evaluated the influence of depleted zones due to the parent well production on the child well fracturing treatments. It then assesses the impacts of the treatment order as pumped in the field versus alternative treatment schemes for potential future developments.

The conclusions resulting from both studies provide insight into the impacts that timing and stress modifications can have on geometric fracture growth in a stacked pay system. Such impacts should be taken into consideration when evaluated the development process for stacked pay systems. Although applied to the DJ basin, the workflows developed during the process have applications in other areas with similar development processes.


Dr. Jennifer L. Miskimins is the Department Head of the Petroleum Engineering Department at the Colorado School of Mines and holds the F.H. “Mick” Merelli/Cimarex Energy Distinguished Department Head Chair. Dr. Miskimins has a BS from the Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology, and MS and PhD degrees from the Colorado School of Mines, all in petroleum engineering. She has over 30 years of experience in the petroleum industry, split between industry and academic positions. Dr. Miskimins specializes in well completions, stimulation, hydraulic fracturing, and associated production issues. She is the founder and Director of the Fracturing, Acidizing, Stimulation Technology (FAST) Consortium. Her research interests focus on the optimization of stimulation treatments and the importance of such on associated recovery efficiencies.

Dr. Miskimins served as the first Completions Technical Director on the SPE International Board of Directors from 2015-2018. She was an SPE Distinguished Lecturer in 2010-2011 and 2013-2014 on hydraulic fracturing in unconventional reservoirs. In 2014, she was awarded the SPE International Completions Optimization and Technology Award. Dr. Miskimins serves on a variety of conference organizing committees and as a technical editor for various journals. Most recently, she is the Editor-in-Chief of the newly published “Hydraulic Fracturing: Fundamentals and Advancements” published by SPE.