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One example of long-term repeated natural fracturing is in the effects of seismic activity.
Stress levels rise and fall episodically, and earthquakes can cause large volumes of connate water to be expelled from fluid-filled fractures. Minor intrusions in the upper part of the crust, such as dikes, propagate in the form of fluid-filled cracks. In sedimentary rocks with a significant water content, fluid at fracture tip will be steam. Roberts received a patent for an "exploding torpedo".
Horizontal wells proved much more effective than vertical wells in producing oil from tight chalk; Hydraulic fracturing of shales goes back at least to 1965, when some operators in the Big Sandy gas field of eastern Kentucky and southern West Virginia started hydraulically fracturing the Ohio Shale and Cleveland Shale, using relatively small fracs.
Most mineral vein systems are a result of repeated natural fracturing during periods of relatively high pore fluid pressure.
The impact of high pore fluid pressure on the formation process of mineral vein systems is particularly evident in "crack-seal" veins, where the vein material is part of a series of discrete fracturing events, and extra vein material is deposited on each occasion.
Hydraulic fracturing (also fracking, fraccing, frac'ing, hydrofracturing or hydrofracking) is a well stimulation technique in which rock is fractured by a pressurized liquid.
The process involves the high-pressure injection of 'fracking fluid' (primarily water, containing sand or other proppants suspended with the aid of thickening agents) into a wellbore to create cracks in the deep-rock formations through which natural gas, petroleum, and brine will flow more freely.
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