Hydraulic fracture-stimulation procedures typical of those provided by contractors in the water-well industry were applied to two boreholes in basaltic and gabbroic rocks near Grand Portage, Minnesota.These boreholes were considered incapable of supplying adequate ground water for even a single household although geophysical logs showed both boreholes were intersected by many apparently permeable fractures. Tests made before and after stimulation indicated that the two boreholes would produce about 0.05 and 0.25 gallon per minute before stimulation, and about 1.5 and 1.2 gallons per minute after stimulation. These increases would be enough to obtain adequate domestic water supplies from the two boreholes but would not furnish enough water for more than a single household from either borehole. Profiles of high-resolution flow made during pumping after stimulation indicated that the stimulation enhanced previously small inflows or stimulated new inflow from seven fractures or fracture zones in one borehole and from six fractures or fracture zones in the other.Geophysical logs obtained after stimulation showed no specific changes in these 13 fractures that could be related to stimulation other than the increases in flow indicated by the flowmeter logs. The results indicate that the stimulation has increased inflow to the two boreholes by improving the connectivity of favorably orientated fractures with larger scale flow zones in the surrounding rocks. Three of four possible diagnostics related to measured pressure and flow during the stimulation treatments were weakly correlated with the increases in production associated with each treatment interval. These correlations are not statistically significant on the basis of the limited sample of 16 treatment intervals in two boreholes, but the results indicate that significant correlations might be established from a much larger data set.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Analysis of the results of hydraulic-fracture stimulation of two crystalline bedrock boreholes, Grand Portage, Minnesota
Water-Resources Investigations Report
U.S. Geological Survey :
USGS Earth Science Information Center, Open-File Reports Section [distributor],