Evaluation on the anisotropic brittleness index of shale rock using geophysical logging

Junchuan Gui, Jianchun Guo, Yu Sang, Yaxi Chen, Tianshou Ma, P. G. Ranjith

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Brittleness index plays a significant role in the hydraulic fracturing design and wellbore stability analysis of shale reservoir. Various brittleness indices have been proposed to characterize the brittleness of shale rocks, but almost all of them ignored the anisotropy of brittleness index. Therefore, uniaxial compression testing integrated with geophysical logging were used to provide insights to the anisotropy of brittleness index for Longmaxi shale, the presented method was utilized to assess brittleness index of Longmaxi shale formation for the interval of 3155–3175 m in CW-1 well. The results indicated that the brittleness index of Longmaxi shale showed a distinct anisotropy, and it achieved the minimum value at β = 45°-60°. As bedding angle increasing, the observed brittleness index (BI2_β) decreased firstly and increased then, it achieved the lowest value at β = 40°–60°, and it is consistent with the uniaxial compression testing results. Compared to the isotropic brittleness index (β = 0°), the deviation of the anisotropic brittleness index ranged from 10% to 66.7%, in other words, the anisotropy of brittleness index cannot be ignored for Longmaxi shale. Organic matter content is one of the main intrinsic causes of shale anisotropy, and the anisotropy degree of brittleness index generally increased with the increasing in organic matter content. The present work is valuable for the assessment of anisotropic brittleness for hydraulic fracturing design and wellbore stability analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)545-557
Number of pages15
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Anisotropy
  • Brittleness
  • Brittleness index
  • Geophysical logging
  • Shale rock
  • Transverse isotropy

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