Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering

Committee Chair

Ilkin Bilgesu.


This research seeks to venture into optimal well and fracture design via reservoir modeling, simulation and economic analysis in an attempt to discover, analyze, interpret and present the best ways of maximizing hydrocarbon (natural gas) production from the Utica shale which is a relatively new reservoir. Furthermore, comparison of natural gas production in deep and thick Utica shale formation sections is studied for various well and facture designs in conjunction with stimulated reservoir volume analysis and economic analysis in order to achieve an optimal design. The objective of this study is to compare and contrast the gas production from various well and fracture designs in deep and thick Utica formation sections. This project focuses only on horizontal wells since it has been proven time and again that horizontal wells tend to more viable in shale when compared to vertical well. Therefore, this project focuses only on how to optimize production from the Utica shale by selecting an optimal horizontal well design. Hence, this thesis work analyzes the effect of fracture half-length, number of fracture treatments and horizontal wellbore lateral lengths on gas production in these shale wells as well as interpretation and presentation of results. Economic evaluations of various well designs are also analyzed, interpreted and presented. This research presents also results for the Utica shale play productivity via optimal well & fracture design and detailed economic analysis.