The tip region of a hydraulic fracture driven by a power law fluid

We investigate the tip region of a hydraulic fracture driven by a power law fluid propagating at a constant velocity V in an impermeable linear elastic medium. We account for the presence of a fluid lag of a priori unknown length at the tip of the fracture. The fluid pressurized fracture propagates perpendicular to the far-field compressive minimum stress in pure opening mode (see Fig.1a). The solution of this semi-infinite hydraulic fracture problem combines elastic deformation, lubrication flow in the filled region of the fracture and the quasi-static fracture propagation condition. It exhibits a multiscale structure related to the strong fluid solid coupling at play near the fracture tip. For a Newtonian fluid, the solution derived by Garagash & Detournay (2000) transition from the classical linear elastic fracture mechanics asymptote near the tip to the viscous asymptote (Desroches et al., 1994) away from the tip (see Fig.1b). The fluid lag was shown to vanish for large values of a dimensionless fracture toughness encapsulating all the problem parameters.


Presented at:
14th Swiss Geosciences Meeting, Geneva, Switzerland, November 18, 2016
Year:
2016
Laboratories:


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 Record created 2017-01-27, last modified 2018-03-17

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