Calculation of Oil Shale Fractures Generated by a Column of Explosive in a Borehole
The preparation of an oil shale formation for subsequent retorting is an important part of an in situ oil extraction process. Oil shale is generally found in competent, sub-surface deposits which must be fragmented in order to accommodate the processing fluids. One fragmentation method under consideration involves boring a vertical shaft into a layer of oil shale, filling the borehole with explosive at the appropriate depth, stemming the hole, and then detonating the column of explosive. Field experiments have been performed in this configuration and measurements obtained of the stress/time histories at several points in the oil shale . As part of the evaluation process of these experiments, wave propagation codes are used to calculate the stress histories in the rock. It is intended that a comparison of the measured and calculated response will aid the development of constitutive models that account for the fracture of the rock, and its state of preparedness for retorting.
KeywordsStress History Radial Fracture Fracture Field Alamos Scientific Laboratory Shale Fracture
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