fracture gradient | Energy Glossary

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fracture gradient

1. n. [Geology]

The pressure required to induce fractures in rock at a given depth.

See: fractureleakoff test

Pressure versus depth plot
Pressure versus depth plot.

2. n. [Well Testing]

The factor used to determine formation fracturing pressure as a function of well depth in units of psi/ft. For example, a fracture gradient of 0.7 psi/ft [15.8 kPa/m] in a well with a true vertical depth of 8000 ft [2440 m] would predict a fracturing pressure of 5600 psi [38.6 MPa].

See: formation fracture pressure