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Spatial Orientations of Hydraulically Conductive Shear Natural Fractures for an Arbitrary Stress State: an Analytical Study
  • Nikita Vladislavovich Dubinya
Nikita Vladislavovich Dubinya
Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

Corresponding Author:dubinya.nv@gmail.com

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The paper focuses on spatial orientations of hydraulically conductive shear fractures existing in naturally fractured fluid saturated rocks. Hydraulic conductivity of such fractures is considered from the current stress state of these rocks. The concept of critically stressed fractures is generally used to establish such relationship. The paper presents an analytical solution to the problem of obtaining all possible spatial orientations of critically stressed fractures for an arbitrary stress tensor. The proposed solution is explicit, providing an opportunity to predict the spatial orientations of hydraulically conductive fractures based on results of any sort of solutions to geomechanical problems considering naturally fractured rocks. The obtained results may be directly used for planning the development of oil fields, characterized by considerable contribution of fractures to permeability in cases when geomechanical modeling takes place. Several examples of applying the obtained solution in practice are presented in the paper: critically stressed fractures spatial orientations are considered for cases of gradual changes in stress tensor components under specific conditions providing an understanding of the main tendencies in these spatial orientations.