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An operator in Oklahoma wanted to boost return-on-investment (ROI) in the Anadarko Basin’s STACK play. They needed to quickly identify the highest-potential hydrocarbon production zones and avoid conventional logging the 1- to 2-mile-long laterals to reduce operational costs and risks.

The Volatiles Analysis Service (VAS) reservoir characterization from Baker Hughes, a GE company (BHGE), was proposed for formation evaluation. An initial mile-long lateral was planned, to be followed up by analyzing 25 more laterals and additional pilot vertical wells.

VAS provides a cost-effective, non-invasive formation evaluation log generated from drill cuttings or core plugs. The fast, high-quality log identifies pay intervals and characterizes hydrocarbon zones with no additional rig time. It helps improve well evaluation by

  • Identifying recoverable oil and gas in laterals that would otherwise be completed blind, or without evaluation
  • Estimating levels of compartmentalization
  • Quantifying rock mechanical strength to optimize stage placement and fracture intensity of laterals
  • Pinpointing filling reservoir migration conduits (faults) and organic acids

Download the PDF to read the full case study.

Challenges & Results


  • Conventional logging in 1- to 2-mile-long laterals
  • Identification of highest-potential hydrocarbon zones
  • Reducing costs and risks


  • VAS detected the optimal hydrocarbon zones in the play
  • More than 200 high-quality samples were obtained for each 1-mile lateral
  • Interpretation time was shortened to less than 2 weeks, reducing costs and time to production
  • Analyses were scalable to the entire development so that additional laterals would be more productive