Numerical simulation of hydraulic fractures is a challenging task. With different options available on the market, it is extremely important to use a benchmark to distinguish reliable models against unreliable ones. SPE 106030 offers experimental data that can serve as a benchmark for hydraulic fracture models. With well documented data from a lab-scale hydraulic fracturing experiment, one can test a numerical model against data measured by lab instruments. FullRank Software’s VirtuaFrac, developed fully in-house, is a capable 3D numerical solver for hydraulic fractures. The results of testing against data in SPE 106030 are presented below:
Numerical results from VirtuaFrac closely match the reported values. Therefore, VirtuaFrac can be reliably used for modeling hydraulic fractures. Additionally, it took VirtuaFrac, a true 3D solver and not a Pseudo 3D one, only 6.4 minutes to complete the simulation on an Apple MacPro desktop computer (grid spacing of 1 mm). This qualifies VirtuaFrac as one of, if not the, fastest in the oil and gas industry!