Qualification of geothermal technology - integration of subsurface and surface systems

Within the framework of this project geothermal technology - this is the interaction of exploration, drilling, reservoir engineering, completion, operation of the geothermal loop, and finally the conversion of heat into the respective energy of usage - is being evaluated and qualified with an integrated approach. Here, the focus is on transdisciplinary processes and optimization approaches that shall be investigated intensively not least regarding the research operations at the Groß Schönebeck site (long-term communication experiment, set up and commissioning of the thermal and power plant loop until the end of 2011). The transfer of this know-how to other locations should make this integrated approach a standard for future site and plant development.

The project comprises 4 work-packages:

  •  AP1 Integrated design of geothermal energy plants: For the planning of geothermal energy plants an approach specific to geothermal will be developed that accounts for the mutual influences of the various components and elements of geothermal technology based on improved data sets.
  • AP2 Coupling of plant, well and reservoir model: Interactions of processes below and above ground shall be imaged by coupled res-ervoir, well and plant modeling. Thereby, key-parameters of the overall system re-garding a sustainable reservoir use will be identified. By means of the tools devel-oped a site-specific and sustainable reservoir use will be made possible.
  • AP3 Thermophysics and physico-chemistry of reservoir fluids: For sustainable operation the knowledge of thermophysical and physico-chemical fluid parameters is of particular importance as these are significantly affecting both the above and underground system. By performing extensive and systematic series of experimental measurements fluid-physical parameters of typical thermal fluids will be determined as a function of pressure, temperature and chemical composition.
  • AP4 Parameterization of geothermal reservoir rocks: Besides information about the relevant properties of a thermal fluid, knowing the reservoir rock properties beforehand is of significant importance both for the quality of reservoir modeling as well as the overall planning and design of geothermal plants. By a systematic analysis of outcrops being reservoir rock analogs an innovative method to quantify rock-specific parameters before the start of drilling will be developed.

Project details



BMU - Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety