Multilateral technology (MLT) is used to construct multiple horizontal wellbores that branch out from a single main wellbore. Traditionally, MLT has been used in offshore conventional environments where reservoir contact drives production and wellhead real estate is at a premium. This paper reviews a field trial of MLT in an onshore unconventional reservoir where hydraulic fracture stimulation of each lateral is necessary to produce the well.

This paper reviews the MLT used to create a new dual-lateral, fully cemented junction (TAML Level 4) well in a major North American unconventional reservoir. Drilling, Completions and Stimulation of the laterals will be addresses, including the challenges encountered and efficiencies gained.

It is possible to drill, stimulate, and produce a multi-lateral well that requires hydraulic fracture stimulation. Three main goals were successfully met with the pilot MLT well: drilled two laterals to targeted depth, independently stimulated and flow tested each lateral separately, and finally flowed both laterals commingled to determine the full potential of the MLT well. The TAML Level 4 (fully cemented) junction was mechanically and hydraulically isolated during the stimulation of both laterals. This is the first TAML Level 4 dual lateral well in an unconventional reservoir commingled at peak production.

Through this case history, key technologies and strategies that should be implemented for MLT to become widely adopted and commercially viable in the unconventional market are identified.

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