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Welcome to the Geomechanics Technical Section!

The purpose of this technical section (TS) shall be to:

  1. Maintain and promote industry awareness of geomechanics-related issues and technologies.
  2. Provide a forum through which technical professionals and academics in the area of geomechanics can share knowledge, experiences, and best practices.
  3. Provide a forum where geomechanics users or service purchasers can learn about the technology of geomechanics, current state-of-the-art, and sources of additional information.
  4. Enhance geomechanics technical competencies that meet the needs of the petroleum industry.
  5. Foster cooperation and discussions, amongst individuals are well as between professional organizations, regarding key geomechanics issues and technologies.

The TS will accomplish its mission through the transfer of knowledge at monthly meetings, conference calls, events and/or other related activities. The TS shall be self-governing within the limitations of SPEI’s Constitution and the policies established by the SPE Board of Directors.

The jurisdiction of this technical section will encompass the subject of geomechanics and its applications in combining geology, geophysics, petrophysics, reservoir engineering, drilling engineering, completion engineering, and production data with geomechanics to build an integrated understanding of the mechanics of subsurface formations.  



Monthly Digest

February 2018

What’s New

We had the first successful GTS networking event for 2018 on January 26th at SPE HFTC held at The Woodlands, Texas (see Chair Corner below for more information on this).
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SPE Canada Unconventional Resources Conference and SPE Canada Heavy Oil Technical Conference will be held concurrently on 13-14 March,2018 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. There will be several papers plus an entire section devoted to geomechanics as applicable to E&P operations.
American Rock Mechanics Association, together with Dhahran geoscience society, is organizing a workshop on The Role of Geomechanics in Stimulation, to be held in Manama, Bahrain from April 3rd to 5th. The workshop will host training sessions and have separate sessions on technology highlights, operator’s perspective and case studies.
The deadline for abstract submission for SPE Liquids-Rich Basin conference – North America, 5-6 September, 2018, Midland, Texas, USA is 19th February.
The deadline for abstract submission for SPE Russian Petroleum Technology Conference, 15-17 October, 2018, Moscow, Russia is 16th March.
The deadline for abstract submission for SPE International Hydraulic Fracturing Technology Conference and Exhibition, 16-18 October, 2018, Muscat, Oman is 18th March.
Chair’s Corner
As I have discussed before, a primary goal of the Geomechanics Technical Section (GTS) is to add value to its members – value in the form of information, resources, networking and the like. Obviously, this value is “in-the-eye-of-the-beholder” so we need your input and ideas on how to achieve this. Please feel free to contact me, another GTS officer, or even use the GTS blog (via SPE Connect) to let us know your ideas and thoughts.
The GTS held a networking gathering at the recent SPE HFTC in The Woodlands. Thanks to the 30+ attendees for the great discussions and ideas. Also, thanks to OilField Geomechanics LLC for sponsoring the event. The attendees expressed strong support for additional networking opportunities, so look for announcements of these throughout 2018. Most importantly, we will try to get something for the URTeC conference in Houston in July.
Upcoming plans include: 1) webinars on basic geomechanics; 2) support for the SPE Forum on Drilling and Completion Geomechanics; 3) networking opportunities; and 4) geomechanics workshop(s) in Latin America. Look for updates on this going forward.
Upcoming Events
  1. SPE Canada Unconventional Resources Conference and SPE Canada Heavy Oil Technical Conference, 13-14 March,2018 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. There will be papers and an entire section devoted to geomechanics as applicable to E&P operations.
  2. SPE Offshore Technology Conference Asia (OTC Asia), 20-23 March, 2018 in Kuala Lampur, Malayasia.
  3. ARMA-DGS workshop on The Role of Geomechanics in Stimulation, 3-5 April, Manama, Bahrain.
  4. SPE-GCS event titled Geomechanics Congress: Recent Advances in Petroleum Geomechanics, 18 April, Houston, Texas, USA.
Guest Column – featuring Richard Plumb, Plumb Geomechanics LLC
Geomechanics technical Section: Membership Report 2017
The Geomechanics Technical section (GMTS) had 1398 members at the end of 2017.
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Figure 1. Age distribution of GMTS members.
Membership in the GMTS represents all the major petroleum producing regions, globally, with the greatest concentrations located in the US and Europe.  The majority of members identify themselves as engineers or geoscientists while the next most populous groups represent managers, students, and the research and development community. Membership is highly skewed to those who are new to SPE (see Figure 1).  
Figure 2 shows the geographic distribution of experience for Engineers and Geology and Geophysics (G&G) members.  Notice that the years of experience in a region is greater for Engineers than for G&G but the median experience of both groups is only about 5 years, globally.
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Figure 2a. Years that GMTS Engineers have been a member of SPE by geographic region.  Years as a member is taken as a proxy for years of experience. The vertical black lines represent the range of experience in a region, the colored dots represent the median years as an SPE member.  2b. Geographic distribution of G&G experience. 
 
The take home message is that our technical community is a young crowd. While the fundamentals of geomechanics are the same, where they are applied and the technology that is employed is very different from the situation 25-30 years ago. It would be interesting to hear from members how you think the practice of Geomechanics has changed in the past 30 years.  How has the drive to cut costs and increase efficiency affected our community?
Recent Papers
  1. An Engineered Approach to Hydraulically Fracture the Vaca Muerta Shale (SPE-189866-MS)
  2. Hydraulic fracture Height Growth Under the Combined influence of Stress Barriers and Natural Fractures (SPE-189861-MS)
  3. Experimental and Numerical investigation of Shear Stimulation and Permeability Evolution in Shales (SPE-189887-MS)

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