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Proppant Permeability And Mesh Size

Views: 79     Author: Bella     Publish Time: 2018-07-12      Origin: SEPPE Technologies

Proppants used should be permeable or permittive to gas under high pressures; the interstitial space between particles should be sufficiently large, yet have the mechanical strength to withstand closure stresses to hold fractures open after the fracturing pressure is withdrawn. Large mesh proppants have greater permeability than small mesh proppants at low closure stresses, but will mechanically fail (i.e. get crushed) and produce very fine particulates ("fines") at high closure stresses such that smaller-mesh proppants overtake large-mesh proppants in permeability after a certain threshold stress.

Though sand is a common proppant, untreated sand is prone to significant fines generation; fines generation is often measured in wt% of initial feed. A commercial newsletter from Momentive cites untreated sand fines production to be 23.9% compared with 8.2% for lightweight ceramic and 0.5% for their product. One way to maintain an ideal mesh size (i.e. permeability) while having sufficient strength is to choose proppants of sufficient strength; sand might be coated with resin,to form CRCS (Curable Resin Coated Sand) or PRCS (Pre-Cured Resin Coated Sands). In certain situations a different proppant material might be chosen altogether—popular alternatives include ceramics and sintered bauxite.

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