General Meeting - Society of Petroleum Engineers - Denver Section - May 16, 2007

SPE General Meeting

Date:           Wednesday – May 16, 2007

Speaker:            Martin Schoell,  GasConsult International Inc

  Geochemical Production Allocation and Production Monitoring In Open Hole Natural Gas Production of Tight Gas Sands

Place:             Denver Athletic Club       

4th Floor
1325 Glenarm Place
Denver, CO80204

[ Yahoo! Maps ]
Map of 1325 Glenarm Pl
Denver, CO 80204-2114

Time:               11:30 am

Cost:               $25.00 ($30.00 at the door, if space is available)

Reservation Deadline:     Noon, Tuesday, May 15, 2007
                                                     or Call 303-620-9080 for reservations

Geochemical production allocation in commingled production is based on mass balance calculations applied to isotopic differences of gas components (Schoell et al., SPE 26171, 1993). 

Systematic applications of these techniques in conventional fields with dual string commingled production allow a field-wide assessment of the productivity of individual reservoirs. A case history will illustrate that completion strategies in a field could be changed based on the finding that a deep reservoir did not contribute significantly to the overall production in the field.

However, these techniques lend themselves in particular for open hole production of natural gas from unconventional gas resources such as tight gas sands or coal seam gas. The new technology package that needs to be applied is 1) mudgas isotope analyses with narrow sampling throughout the well bore which will provide the isotope variations of all formations in the well 2) isotope analyses of frac backflow gases  and 3) isotope analysis of the commingled production 4) Application of chemometrics for deconvolution (“unmixing”) of data.

With this combination of technologies it will be possible to determine from the analysis of the commingled production how much each reservoir package or frac unit contributes to the gas flow in the well. One of the key benefits of knowing gas flow quantities could be an optimization of the frac program so that only producing sections are treated for stimulation. From several unpublished data we know that the isotope variations exist in most tight gas columns in the PiceanceBasinand the Greater Green River Basin. Examples from the Siberia Ridge Field and the Mamm Creek Field will illustrate the technology.  

A systematic application of gas isotope analyses downhole and across a field would provide a 3D-representation of the gas flow dynamics in the field (compartment definition etc). Time series of analyses of commingled production would enable engineers to diagnose changes in gas production for a better design of remedial action. 


Dr. Martin Schoell is an internationally known geochemist who specialized during his 30 year career on isotope geochemistry of oil and natural gas.

Dr. Schoell developed fundamental concepts of gas geochemistry at the Federal Geological Survey in Germany together with his associates at that time, Wolfgang Stahl, Eckard Faber and Michael Whiticar.

Martin Schoell is the principal author and co-author of many fundamental papers on gas geochemistry and it’s application in gas exploration and production (see publication list). In one of his early papers on bacterial gas in South Germany, Martin developed already in 1977 the concept of mixing of thermogenic and bacterial gas. In the 1983 AAPG paper “Genetic Characterization of Natural Gases” Martin laid the groundwork for the application of natural gas isotope geochemistry in gas exploration.
From 1984 to 2001, Dr. Schoell was a senior Scientist at Chevron’s research center in La Habra in California and worked mostly in international gas exploration in such diverse areas as Gulf of Mexico, San Juan Basin, West Texas, Williston Basin, South Sumatra, South China Sea, NW Siberia, Nigeria, Angola, NW Shelf Australia, Papua New Guinea, the North Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. Together with Dr. Yongchun Tang, Martin Schoell developed and applied a groundbreaking new isotope modeling technique, that allows for quantitative predictions on economically important properties of oil and gas in an exploration area.
Dr. Schoell did extensive lecturing all over the world, within and outside Chevron and was a AAPG Distinguished Lecturer in 1996. Dr. Schoell won the 1995 AAPG best paper award at the International AAPG conference and exhibition in Nice.
After retiring from ChevronTexaco in December 2001, Dr. Schoell founded GasConsult International Inc. and continues development and application of natural gas-related development and application work.

• Development and application of mudgas isotope analyses mostly in the Gulf of Mexico
• GasConsult International: Proposal and award of a 3 year Joint Industrial Project “Source Specific Calibration of Gas Isotopes Norwegian North Sea”
• Research Project on Bacterial Gas Quantification (JNOC)
• Environmental application of gas isotopes for identification of gas sources
• New proposals for Barents Sea and SE Asia in preparation

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