Project Information

Field Demo of Eco-Friendly Propped Hydraulic Fractures


Primary Performer
DaniMer Scientific, LLC (Bainbridge, GA)

Additional Participants
CSI Technologies, LLC
EnerPol (formerly Burleson and Cooke Law Firm)
Texas A&M University
Petroleum Technology Transfer Coucil (PTTC)

Previous laboratory research funded under the Small Producers Program, project number 09123-20, has confirmed utility of a Novel Fracturing Treatment (NFT) that is ready for field trials. This treatment uses a biodegradable polymer containing a proppant that remains holding the fracture open once the polymer degrades. NFT is ideal for creating small fractures past damage such as those performed on multitudes of wells in the U. S. operated by small producers. The objective of this project is to perform several field trials of NFT to confirm its applicability and to analyze placement and production improvement results to validate the method’s field utility.

Field design protocol and simulation software will be developed and used to determine test well candidates from wells operated by small producers participating on the project as an advisory group. Once the candidate wells are chosen, pre-job testing will be performed on the wells and pumping and placement procedures determined. The polymer materials will be manufactured based on the well criteria. New simulation runs will also be performed with the simulation software and bench and pilot scale QC testing will be performed using the materials manufactured specifically for the job. Data gathered during and after the treatments will be recorded, analyzed, and compiled into a report and a technical paper summarizing the work done on the project. Seminars will be conducted to instruct small producers on how to utilize the process.

The potential impact from successful completion of the proposed project will be introduction of a new type of production improvement process ideally suited to small producers. The potential benefits include less horsepower and simpler execution making the process accessible to even small, unsophisticated pumping companies. Lower water utilization and elimination of damage caused by traditional fracturing fluid gellants are also expected benefits. Successful completion of the project will have significant impact on the industry as the NFT process could be applicable on 40% of hydraulic fracturing treatments in the U.S. The process is applicable on wells that require hydraulic fracturing treatments with less than 50,000 pounds of proppant and have substantial tubular configuration that would allow for adequate volume of material placement to conduct the NFT process. CSI Technologies participates in the Environmentally Friendly Drilling (EFD) program run by Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC). HARC has identified this NFT as a new environmentally friendly production enhancement process with multiple benefits over conventional hydraulic fracturing treatments including: less hydraulic horsepower requirements, decreased footprint, simpler execution, lower water utilization, use of non-damaging biodegradable polymer-based fracturing fluid.

Principal Investigator: : Dr. Steve Wann

Project Cost:
DOE share: $895,371
Recipient share: $897,600

Project Duration: 1 year