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Modélisation linéaire élastique inverse des contraintes du sous-sol : Etude comparative et applications

Abstract : Today, one of the main challenges in the oil industry, especially during the exploration phase, is the exploitation of new resources in structurally complex areas such as naturally fractured reservoirs, salt diapirs, mountain ranges, and unconventional reservoirs.We know that the geometry and sliding along active faults modifies the local stress distribution. Knowing the present day perturbed stress field is important for the study of earthquakes, for the planning of the borehole drilling and stability as well as for the prediction of fractures induced by hydro-fracturing and reactivation of natural fractures. In the other side, perturbed paleostress are responsible for the development of (pre-existing) natural fractures. The detection and modeling of the latter, are essential both in the oil industry (migration and trapping of fluids) for a cost efficient recovery of natural reserves.Understanding and quantifying the spatial and temporal development of the stress distribution has a significant economic and environmental impact. The analysis of paleo-constraints was intuitively introduced first by Anderson (1905 & 1942), then in the middle of the last century, Wallace (1951) and Bott (1959) proposed the simple hypothesis that (i) The stress field is homogeneous in space and constant in time, and that (ii) the slip direction is parallel to the traction projected on the fault plane which gives the direction of the shear stress. Many stress inversion methods are based on this hypothesis while recent studies raise doubts as to their compatibility with rock mechanics.In order to investigate the validity of the Wallace and Bott hypothesis, a comparison with vectors of slip generated with numerical models (BEM) is performed. By testing the influence of multiple parameters (geometry, boundary conditions, friction, Poisson’s coefficient , half-space, fault fluid pressure), it is shown that the complex geometry faults subject to specific boundary conditions can yield slip vectors with significant discrepancies with the maximum shear stress resolved on the fault plane. Conversely, the presence of a high sliding friction, allows under certain conditions, to validate the hypothesis of Wallace and Bott.We then focus on the task to compare the results of stress inversions based on the assumption of Wallace and Bott (called classical stress inversion methods) to a geomechanical method. For this, a complex fault geometry is used in a sensitivity analysis (boundary conditions, friction, sampling) to evaluate the uncertainty of the results of the two inversion methods. This analysis is then compared to a case study, Chimney Rock (Utah, USA), showing the advantages and disadvantages of the classical stress inversion methods.One of the main challenges of the oil industry is the exploitation of resource in structurally complex oil fields such as naturally fractured reservoirs. Knowing the heterogeneous paleostress allows to optimize the modeling of these natural fractures. Since slip on faults is hardly observed in petroleum reservoirs, fracture orientation data (joints, faults, stylolites) are naturally taken into account during the inversion of stresses. It is shown, using various field and industry examples, that in such cases the use of mechanical stress inversions is much more appropriate.However, it is sometimes difficult to determine the fracture kinematics observed along wellbores, and very often the studied regions underwent multiple tectonic phases. The final section aims to address the problem of data with unknown kinematic (joints, faults, stylolites ...) and expends the mechanical stress inversion to the separation of tectonic phases.
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Mostfa Lejri. Modélisation linéaire élastique inverse des contraintes du sous-sol : Etude comparative et applications. Earth Sciences. Université Montpellier, 2015. English. ⟨NNT : 2015MONTS212⟩. ⟨tel-02073076⟩

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