Tartan Cemented MultiFrac™ Limited Entry Ball-Drop Systems Increase Production by 12.5% in the Utica


A major operator exploiting the Utica shale formation wanted to maximize stimulated rock volume on their most extended reach horizontal wells. They were looking for a cemented completion solution that would enable more frac stages while simultaneously increasing limited-entry cluster efficiency. They were using cemented plug-and-perf completions, but wanted to take advantage of the more time-efficient operation of ball-drop sleeves, while maintaining cemented liner stage isolation.


Tartan proposed a solution that allowed the operator to increase their stage density while optimizing cluster efficiency. The patented MultiFrac™ sleeve enables simultaneous stimulation of multiple stages with one actuation ball. The integrated patent-pending BurstPoint™ port technology increases cluster efficiency from 55% to 95% by preventing proppant erosion during the fracturing treatment – translating to increased production.

The BurstPoint™ ports are machined such that they explosively open at a known threshold pressure and are sized to match the limited entry design. Until the point of fracture initiation, the BurstPoint™ ports remain totally closed preventing cement from entering the system, enabling reliable ball-drop operations.


The operator chose to complete 4 wells, 2 wells on each of two separate pads with hybrid cemented systems using Tartan’s MultiFrac™ for 18 treatment stages at the toe comprising 5 MultiFrac™ sleeves (clusters) for a total of 90 sleeves – the most cemented ball-drop sleeves ever run – and a further 16 plug-and-perf stages at the heel.

All 360 MultiFrac™ sleeves successfully functioned with clear pressure signatures for sleeve shifting and opening of the BurstPoint ports. On average, each stage was pumped at 80 bbl/min with 5,100 bbl of fluid and 330,000 lb of proppant for a total of 5.6 million lbs per well (see job summary). On average, the 18 MultiFrac™ treatment stages were stimulated in 1.5 days compared to 3 days for the 16 stages of plug-and-perf.


Total = 34
MultiFrac™ = 18 x 5 sleeves
Plug-and perf = 16
5.5 in. (139.7 mm)
13.4 lb/ft (20 kg/m)
P-110 premium threads

Avg. MD
ft (m)
16,100 (4,910)
18,680 (5,690)
Avg. TVD
ft (m)
8,110 (2,470 )
8,025 (2,450 )
Avg. Lateral Length
ft (m)
7,560 (2,300 )
8,690 (2,650 )
Avg. Total Proppant
lb (kg)
5.6 MM (2.54 MM)
Avg. Proppant/Stage
lb (kg)
330,000 (149,700)
Avg. Frac Fluid/Stage
bbl (m3)
5,100 (810)
Avg. Frac Rate
bpm (m3/min)
80 (12.7)
Avg. Frac Pressure
psi (MPa)
8,400 (58)

Reviewing production between two wells completed with the MultiFrac™ system on 18 of the 34 stages verses two wells on the same pad with 34 stages of plug-and-perf for the first 180 days showed a 12.5% increase for the well completed with MultiFrac™ systems (Fig. 5). If MultiFrac™ sleeves were used on all treatment stages, by extrapolation this increase would have been 23.7%.

MultiFrac™ Utica

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