Masters Theses

Keywords and Phrases

Complex Fractures; Equilibrium Dune; Hydraulic Fracturing; Proppant Bed Heights; Proppant Transport; Water Frac


"Water fracs have become an essential part of unconventional reservoirs to create deeper fracture networks. Proppant transport in water fracs is challenging in terms of fluids ability to carry the proppant deeper into these fracture networks. This experimental study investigates the impact of the flow rates, fracture widths and complexity controlling the ability of proppant to flow into complex fracture networks. This research attempts to nullify the knowledge gap in understanding width heterogeneity in primary and secondary fractures. This study speaks for settling pattern and proppant transport through a slot flow model with a unique approach to understand stage wise distribution of proppant. The slurry was injected in multiple fracture pore volumes at required flow rates to monitor the stage-wise development of proppant bed. Study illustrates proppant transport in terms of proppant bed heights, equilibrium dune levels and proppant area fractions. Results represents proppant transport for fracture widths, which are comparable to proppant diameter. Two different configurations of apparatus were used to investigate heterogeneity in width in complex fracture networks. Results describe stepwise distribution of ceramic proppant under the influence of flow rates, fracture width and complexity. The bed height gradually builds up in the slot with each injection to achieve an equilibrium bed height. Injection slurry velocities primarily affect proppant transport affecting its distribution in fractures. The fracture width showed a significant impact on proppant transport. Width heterogeneity in complex fracture systems provide better proppant distribution in complex fracture networks. Heterogeneity of width in the fracture caused increased settling and more proppant surface area fractions. The results help in optimizing the proppant flow patterns into complex fracture networks"--Abstract, page iii.


Dunn-Norman, Shari
Imqam, Abdulmohsin

Committee Member(s)

Britt, Larry K.
Bai, Baojun


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Petroleum Engineering


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Fall 2017


xiii, 91 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 87-90).


© 2017 Vivekvardhan Reddy Kesireddy, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Thesis Number

T 11227

Electronic OCLC #