D521 Recognizing, Characterizing, & Modeling Naturally Fractured Reservoirs

Event Facts

  • 5 Oct. 2021
  • 6 Oct. 2021
  • 7 Oct. 2021
  • 12 Oct. 2021
  • 13 Oct. 2021
  • 14 Oct. 2021
Half-day sessions, starting in the mornings for the Americas and afternoons for Europe, Africa and Middle East. Any variation to this will be communicated in advance.
Event Code:
6 sessions
Wayne Narr
Booking Status:
Good Availability
USD $2,790 (Exclusive of tax)

Course Facts

Course Code:
3 days
Virtual Classroom
2.4 Continuing Education Units
24 Professional Development Hours
Certificate Issued Upon Completion


Business Impact: Improved understanding of first-order reservoir characteristics can lead to more-efficient field development and field management decisions. Fractures can improve or degrade reservoir performance. In either case, informed decisions will lead to improved economy of production and potentially higher recovery efficiency of a reservoir.

Fractures can dominate the flow behavior of a reservoir. Characterization of a reservoir with significant fracture flow, and prediction of reservoir performance, require approaches that differ distinctly from the characterization processes we typically use with conventional reservoirs. In this course we gain knowledge of Naturally Fractured Reservoirs (NFRs) through review of case studies, review and discussion of outcrop analogs, overview of fracture flow effects in well-test data, assessment of data from image logs and core, prediction of fracture occurrence, and overview of modeling methodologies.

Duration and Training Method

This is a virtual classroom course divided into 6 three-hour webinar sessions over a two-week period (equivalent to a three-day classroom course), comprising lectures, discussion, case studies, and practical exercises to be completed by participants.

Participants will learn to:

  1. Understand data and methods used for screening reservoirs, to assess if their flow behavior is strongly influenced by natural fractures.  
  2. Determine basic principles of the occurrence of natural fracture systems.
  3. Learn basic principles of fluid flow in natural fracture systems.
  4. Understand key data and tools for geological and reservoir engineering characterization, with emphasis on developing a common understanding across disciplines.
  5. Distinguish commonly used approaches for modeling (geologic and flow-simulation) of naturally fractured reservoirs, and how to decide which modeling approach to use.
  1. Introduction
    • Overview and objectives
    • Definitions
    • Classification of NFRs
  2. NFR case study examples and comparisons
  3. Heterogeneity & screening; is my reservoir naturally fractured?
    • Performance characteristics
    • Qualitative review of indicators
    • Well test data as basis for screening
  4. Geology of natural fracture systems
    • Fracture types (faults vs. opening-mode fractures)
    • Classical mechanics of fractures
    • Characteristics of natural, opening-mode fractures
    • Characteristics of faults
    • Special concerns – Carbonates
  5. Fluids in fractures
    • Fracture porosity
    • Fracture permeability
    • Recovery physics (very brief and introductory)
  6. Fracture characterization
    • Fracture recognition, summary list of evidence
    • Core
    • Image logs
    • Synthesizing to understand fracture effectiveness
    • Well tests
  7. Geological analysis (including several exercises)
    • Orientation
    • Sampling bias suppression
    • Restoring folded beds to understand fracture geometry
    • Fracture spacing, fracture density
    • Fracture porosity
    • Critical stress
  8. NFR prediction
    • Fault & related extension fractures
    • Folds & fractures
    • Rock properties & fracture occurrence
  9. Modeling NFRs
    • Geological (static) model
    • Fluid-flow (dynamic) model
  10. NFR reservoir management
    • Miscellaneous drilling & completion issues

Who should attend

Geologists and Reservoir Engineers engaged with NFRs, or wishing to expand their knowledge of NFRs.

Prerequisites and linking courses

There are no prerequisites for this course, but a basic understanding of geology and/or basic reservoir engineering would be advantageous. Courses with complementary focus include N437 (Geomechanics for Unconventional and Tight Reservoirs), N411 (Fractures, Stress and Geomechanics), N379 (Application of Geomechanics to Reservoir Characterization, Management and Hydraulic Stimulation, Wyoming, USA), N464 (Fractured Reservoir Assessment and Integration to Full Field Development, Montana, USA), and N012 (Reservoir Modelling Field Class, Utah, USA).

Wayne Narr

Wayne is a structural geologist engaged in consulting, research, and training, concentrating on natural fracture systems and characterization of naturally fractured reservoirs. He is CFO (Chief Fracture Officer) of Narr NFR Consulting.

Throughout much of his 37-year career Wayne worked for Chevron Energy Technology Company where he was a Senior Research Consultant. He guided a multidisciplinary team focused on NFRs and participated in the technical work. His efforts helped pioneer new techniques at the intersection of reservoir engineering and geology. Prior to building expertise in NFR characterization, Wayne worked on challenges relating to larger-scale structural geology, for both exploration and research.

Wayne was lead author of the book Naturally Fractured Reservoir Characterization published by the SPE. He has written numerous researcch articles on NFRs and on natural fracture systems, and he spoke about them as an SPE Distinguished Lecturer. He mixes his fractures with his interest in photography, and the result may be found at a web site called Fifty Photos for Fracture Aficionados

Affiliations and Accreditation
PhD Princeton University - Structural Geology
MSc University of Toronto - Structural Geology
BS Princeton University - Geology/Earth Science

Courses Taught
N521: Recognizing, Characterizing, & Modeling Naturally Fractured Reservoirs

Alternative Dates for this Course

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