I first heard Petrohawk talk about restricted rate production in the Haynesville back during the 3rd quarter 2009 conference call. They said that they have a number of wells they are going to be producing on a 14/64″ choke to compare the performance with offset wells producing on a more typical choke. It seems these days that more companies say they subscribe to the practice which include EOG, Comstock, and St Mary. Goodrich said recently that they do not necessarily believe that IRR is being negatively affected.
The general purpose behind restricted rate production is to protect the integrity of the completion. The intense pressures associated with the high production rates can really negatively affect the conduits that the fracture jobs create.
The first well that Petrohawk said they produced this way is the Matthew 17 #1 in Red River Parish, Louisiana. Below is the production curve so far. Its very interesting to note that production actually increased a little in Oct. and thus far has only declined by about 10%. This is in the Haynesville that so far is notorious for extreme early declines.
Lets also compare to the offsets. Below are the Petrohawk operated Haynesville offsets labeled by Date First Produced, PracIP (2nd month production), and the Cumulative Gas Produced. Notice that the Matthew 17 #1 does have a much lower Prac IP. I labeled the two wells with the nearest first produced date A and B for comparison, in fact A has been producing for the same amount of time. Even though the Matthew 17 #1 began producing at 64% what A did, it produced more gas in the last month.
When the Matthew 17 has the same cumulative production as the control well, if it’s flowing pressure is greater, then one may be able to infer that the EUR will then be greater. But there is still much testing that needs to be done.
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