TPG4185 - Formation Mechanics


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Portfolio assessment
Grade: Letters

Evaluation form Weighting Duration Examination aids Grade deviation
work 25/100
Oral examination 75/100

Course content

Reservoir geomechanics; Introduction to poroelasticity theory. Reservoir compaction, linear elastic model and inelastic effects. Surface subsidence. Stress evolution during production. Compaction as a drive mechanism. Stress effects on porosity and permeability. Coupled geomechanic reservoir simulation. Link to 4D-seismics.
Borehole stability: Diagnostics. Critical mud weight limits to prevent hole collapse and mud losses. Effects of temperature and mud composition on borehole stability. Stability of deviated and horizontal holes. Effects of plasticity. Modelling of borehole stability. Formation of shale barriers around cased boreholes. Sand and particle production: Basic mechanisms. Sand control. Sand prediction. Volumetric sand production.
Hydraulic fracturing: Initiation and growth of hydraulic fractures. Thermal fracturing during water injection. Use of fracturing during simulation, for stress determination, and for waste storage.

Learning outcome

The students shall understand how stresses change as a result of fluid withdrawal from (or injection into) the subsurface, and how such changes influence reservoir recovery, underground storage, and hole stability during drilling and production.

The students shall be able to perform calculations of reservoir compaction and surface subsidence, mud weight window for stable drilling, critical drawdown for initiation of sand production and estimated produced sand mass, plus well pressure for initiation of hydraulic fracturing.

General competence: The students shall develop their ability to work in teams solving multidisciplinary tasks, and obtain experience in presentation of their own work.

Digital component:
Through their group exercise the students will learn how to use and build simple models with a Finite Element Modelling software.

Learning methods and activities

Lectures, exercises and semester project. There are compulsory exercises through the semester. Students will accomplish a semester project (in groups) and present the results oral and in writing. This work is compulsory and counts for 25% of the final grade. The lectures are held in English if international master's students attend. Evaluation of the course is done by a reference group consisting of students in collaboration with the responsible professor.

Compulsory assignments

  • Exercises

Further on evaluation

Portfolio assessment is the basis for the grade in the course. The portfolio includes a final written exam (75%) and evaluation of compulsory group project (25%). The results for the parts are given in %-scores, while the entire portfolio is assigned a letter grade. If there is a re-sit examination, the form of assessment may be changed from written to oral examination. For a re-take of an examination, all assessments during the course must be re-taken.

Specific conditions

Exam registration requires that class registration is approved in the same semester. Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department.

Course materials

Recommended textbook: Fjær, E., Holt, R.M., Horsrud, P., Raaen, A.M., Risnes, R.: "Petroleum Related Rock Mechanics", Elsevier 2008. Curriculum will be given at semester start.
Presentations from lectures are provided.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
SIG4054 7.5
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Third-year courses, level III


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2020

No.of lecture hours: 3
Lab hours: 3
No.of specialization hours: 6

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Formation Evaluation
  • Rock Mechanics
  • Deep drilling Engineering
  • Petroleum Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering
  • Geophysics
  • Technological subjects
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Geoscience and Petroleum



Examination arrangement: Portfolio assessment

Term Status code Evaluation form Weighting Examination aids Date Time Digital exam Room *
Autumn ORD work 25/100
Room Building Number of candidates
Summer UTS work 25/100
Room Building Number of candidates
Autumn ORD Oral examination (1) 75/100 2020-12-02 09:00
Room Building Number of candidates
Summer UTS Oral examination 75/100
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.
  • 1) Merk at eksamensform er endret som et smittevernstiltak i den pågående koronasituasjonen. Please note that the exam form has changed as a preventive measure in the ongoing corona situation.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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