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Exploitation of Unconventional Oil And Gas


March 4 - 8, 2018

Instructor : S. Ibrahimu P. Eng.


The course is suitable primarily to petroleum geologists and geophysicts working for oil exploration and development.


This course offers a detailed coverage of the techniques used in the exploitation of the unconventional and tight oil and gas reservoirs. Since massive resources are present in the unconventional oil and gas fields including Shale gas/oil, Coal Bed Methane (CBM) and tight sands, the oil industry is paving the way to exploit these resources; including bring new technology and training their staff. Background information about the main differences between conventional and unconventional reservoirs is established. In order to successfully evaluate the potential of these resources, the integration of the various techniques such as; engineering, petrophysical, geological, and geo-mechanical properties is utilized to determine their commerciality. Further, the technology of Multi- stage Fracing of Horizontal Wells (MFHW's) should be carefully optimized to enhance the economics of the Unconventional resrevoirs. Methods of evaluating performance and reserves of the tight/unconventional reservoirs will be discussed including: Mini frac testing (DFIT), the flowing material balance, advanced type curve matching (Blasingame, Fetkovich), well testing (PTA) and Rate Transient Analysis (RTA). Interesting case studies using actual field data will be reviewed. A course hand-out which is an excellent reference will be provided.


  • Introduction to the unconventional:
    • Potential of the unconventional in North America and worldwide
    • Comparison of engineering and geological characteristics of conventional and unconventional reservoirs.
  • Coalbed Methane (CBM):
    • Background and history
    • Factors that affect the commerciality of CBM.
    • Geological/petrophysical characteristics
    • Methods to estimate gas content and reserves
    • Laboratory tests to estimate total organic content (TOC) and maturity
    • Langmuir gas desorption isotherm for wet and dry CBM
    • Production mechanism and well productivity estimate
    • Uncertainties of formation evaluation
    • Class problem example
  • Shale gas/oil:
    • Background and history
    • Shale gas formation characteristics/description.
    • Shale maturity and methods to determine type of hydrocarbon potential
    • Geo-chemical laboratory tests to determine shale characteristics
    • Pyrolysis analysis of Kerogen
    • Typical well production profile
    • Case study from the Horn River Field (Canada)
    • Shale oil vs Oil Shale! (production mechanism)
  • Tight sands:
    • Background and history
    • Review of potential reserves of tight and unconventional reservoirs
    • Geological description
    • Review of exploitation techniques; primary and secondary
  • Fracing Techniques:
    • Background and history
    • Fracturing technique and environmental concerns
    • Concepts of fracing technology; longitudinal vs. transverse fracs
    • Well fracability; mineral contents, rock mechanic parameters: Young's modulus , poise ratio, and ductile vs. brittle
  • Multi-stage Fracture of Horizontal Wells (MFHW's):
    • Benefits/applications of horizontal wells
    • Review of the technique of MFHW's and frac design optimization including:
    • Hz well spacing
    • Frac size and the number of frac stages
    • Open hole vs. cased hole completion/fracturing
    • Taking advantage of sweet spots - quantifying benefits
    • Case studies
  • Applications of Mini Frac or DFIT:
    • Benefits/applications of Diagnostic Fracture Injection Test (DFIT)
    • Pre and post closure analysis
    • Identification of leak-off types and fracture characteristics
    • Case studies
  • Performance evaluation tools of tight sands/unconventional vs conventional reservoirs:
    • Review basic concepts of reservoir evaluation, such as flow geometry and boundary conditions.
    • Review of the principles and applications of the well test analysis techniques for conventional and tight sands
    • Case studies
  • Reserves Determination:
    • Volumetric, material balance, and probabilistic methods (class example)
    • Use of Arps and advanced type curve analysis (DCA) for tight formations
    • The use of flowing material balance technique
    • Use of advanced type curve matching (Blasingame, Fetkovich)
    • Use of new numerical techniques to estimate Stimulated Reservoir Volume (SRV) and Contacted Reservoir Volume (CRV), commonly used for reserves booking of tight sands and unconventional formation
    • Case studies
  • Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) for tight sand:
    • Common techniques used for EOR
    • Review of waterflood application for tight sands using MFHW's
  • Closing remarks and a question period


First day will be held at the Holiday Inn Maadi Hotel, in Cairo. The participants will be transported the next day to Al Ain el Sokhna. The course will be continued in Al Ain el Sokhna.


The cost is inclusive of course manual, guidebook, accommodation in Al Ain el Sokhna and transportation to/from Al Ain el Sokhna.


Mr. Saad Ibrahim, P. Eng., an independent consultant and president of Petro Management Group Ltd., established in Calgary (1994). Graduated from the University of Alexandria (Egypt) with B.Sc. in 1973. He also completed a post-graduate program with the University of Calgary, Canada, in Chemical and Petroleum Engineering in 1983.

Mr. Ibrahim has over 35 years of reservoir/production engineering experience in Western Canada (with Amoco, BP and Husky) and internationally in Yemen (with Nexen Petroleum International Ltd.), Algeria, Libya, Tanzania, Iraq, Egypt, Turkey, Venezuela, Argentina, Ecuador, Peru, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. The focus of Mr. Ibrahim's experience lies in the area of reservoir management and well-test planning/analysis.

Mr. Ibrahim has lectured for the Petroleum Society (CIM), Calgary International Petroleum Conference, and for several exploration and production companies. Mr. Ibrahim published recently a technical paper titled "Performance Evaluation of Multi-stage Frac of Horizontal Wells MFHW's", for the Oil and Gas Expo & Conference in Calgary - June 2011. Mr. Ibrahim was on the Reserve Panel of the 4th International Conference in Calgary on Horizontal Well Technology. Mr. Ibrahim is a member with the APEGGA and SPE.

Special Award:

Mr. Ibrahim received the "Immigrant of Distinction" Award, in the business category, for the year 2008.