Tracer Diagnostics | Overview

Spectrum Tracer Services is now NCS Multistage Tracer Diagnostics. Only the name has changed.

We are a full-service tracer diagnostics provider and have traced more than 6,000 wells in the U.S. and Canada since we began as Spectrum Tracer Services in 2010. In 2017, we became part of NCS Multistage.

AirLock DiagramFirstViewTM 3D interactive animation


COMMON TRACER USES

Diagnose frac hits
Combine oil and formation-water tracers to locate the source of interwell communication and to determine whether frac hits are propped communication, hydraulic communication, or only pressure. Radioisotope tracers are also useful for detecting communication.

Verify stage contributions
Use oil, formation-water, and natural-gas tracers to verify which stages are contributing to production.

Calculate cluster efficiency
Radioactive tracers placed with the proppant are logged with gamma tools to show exactly which clusters accepted Proppant.

Locate wellbore obstructions
Stage-specific tracers reveal which stages are below and which are above a wellbore blockage.

Monitor waterflood efficiency
Use water or gas tracers to define field connectivity by mapping the movement of injected water or gas to production wells.

TRACER SERVICES

OIL TRACERS
Patented slow-release OST® oil-soluble tracers  are deployed as particulates that embed in propped fractures, enabling longer term oil production evaluation compared to conventional liquid tracers. We have 38 unique oil tracers.

FORMATION-WATER TRACERS
Patented slow-release WST® particulate water-soluble tracers embed in propped fractures for extended produced-water diagnostics. We have more than 36 unique formation-water tracers.

NATURAL-GAS TRACERS
Natural-gas tracers are deployed with proppant deep into the formation, where they partition into the gas phase. The inert chemicals are not naturally occurring and can be detected at extremely low concentration levels. We have 17 unique natural-gas tracers.

FRAC-FLUID IDENTIFIERS
Liquid FFI® frac-fluid identifiers facilitate identification of stage-specific frac-fluid returns as well as detection of frac fluid entering offset wellbores during infill completions. We have 42 unique frac-fluid identifiers.

RADIOISOTOPE TRACING
We employ the three standard radioisotope (RA) tracers: Iridium, Scandium, and Antimony. The solid tracer particulates are deployed with the proppant. Post- completion logging detects the radioisotopes in the near-wellbore region and in offset wells. Our RA logging capability includes memory gamma ray, memory spectral gamma ray, and real-time spectral gamma ray.

ONGOING TRACER DEVELOPMENT
We continue to expand our chemical tracer portfolio to accommodate the growing number of stages per well.

SAMPLING AND ANALYSIS
After samples are received at our laboratory, standard FFI reports are ready in 2–3 business days, OST and WST reports typically require 7–10 business days, and natural-gas reports typically take 7–14 business days. Custom reports may take longer.

3D INTERACTIVE VIEWER
The FirstView™ application provides interactive, animated 3D visualization of chemical tracer recovery and well-to-well fluid communication. The viewer selectively displays stage numbers, tracer concentrations, and other key information, so you can clearly see what is happening in the formation. The viewer is included with all hard copy reports.