EDFM and EDFM-AI for modeling and calibration of complex hydraulic and natural fractures – Wei Yu

Current reservoir simulators oversimplify fracture complexity to simple fracture geometry.

After more than 10 years of developments, we invented the Embedded Discrete Fracture Model (EDFM) technology with several US patents. It has been proved to be the best fracture modeling solution for explicitly and efficiently modeling any 3D fracture complexity. The EDFM technology as a key bridge to couple realistic fracture models to any reservoir simulation with true fracture complexity without simplification. It is a game-changer for fracture modeling and simulation in the petroleum industry. It has been recognized by JPT for three times as an emergent technology. It can provide better solutions for various challenging fracture topics such as well interference, well spacing optimization, natural fracture calibration, shale EOR, geothermal, vug, and fracture diagnostic analysis.

Additionally, an optimization technology called EDFM-Artificial Intelligence (EDFM-AI) was born. By the aid of cutting-edge machine learning algorithms, EDFM-AI is a powerful tool to automatically obtain multiple history-matching solutions, reduce subsurface uncertainties, and estimate production forecast reliably. More importantly, it can effectively calibrate hydraulic fracture properties such as fracture half-length, fracture height, fracture conductivity, fracture hits, and cluster efficiency.


Fig. 1 Flexible coupling fracture and reservoir simulators by EDFM technology


Fig. 2 Full-field simulation with large-scale natural fractures and faults using EDFM


Fig. 3 EDFM-AI for automatically and efficiently determining fracture hits location, density, and intensity between multiple wells



Fig. 4 EDFM-AI for hydraulic and natural fracture generation based on microseismic events analysis and calibration with production data


Fig. 5 EDFM-AI enables well spacing optimization efficiently to maximize recovery and minimize cost


Yu, W., and Sepehrnoori, K. 2018. Shale Gas and Tight Oil Reservoir Simulation, 1st Ed., Publisher: Elsevier, Cambridge, USA. ISBN: 978-0128138687.

Sepehrnoori, K., Xu, Y., and Yu, W. 2020. Embedded Discrete Fracture Modeling and Application in Reservoir Simulation, 1st Ed., Publisher: Elsevier, Cambridge, USA. ISBN: 978-0128196885.

Tripoppoom, S., Yu, W., Sepehrnoori, K, and Miao, J. 2021. Assisted History Matching for Unconventional Reservoirs, 1st Ed., Publisher: Elsevier, Cambridge, USA. ISBN: 9780128222423.