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A Grand Challenge Update on Geothermal Energy

By District Energy posted 04-03-2024 06:17




The Society of Petroleum Engineers identified five technical “Grand Challenges” in 2023 which, if successfully developed, could advance the interests of the SPE community in a net-zero world and help ensure our longevity and contributions to a prosperous future.

Access to the subsurface is a key skillset of the SPE community, including geology and geophysics, well construction and completion, reservoir engineering, production operations, and facilities. The challenges that geothermal faces to become a leading player in the net-zero world are well within the areas of expertise of the SPE community, ranging from rapid technology implementation and learning-by-doing to assure competitiveness, to establishing suitable funding mechanisms to secure access to capital.

Since the publication of the SPE Grand Challenges last year, significant milestones across multiple facets of the geothermal industry have been achieved to show that “cross-pollination” between oil and gas and geothermal technologies are advancing the learning curve to provide a competitive solution.

Eavor. In March 2023, Eavor completed construction of its AGS demonstration project in New Mexico, with a directional well system reaching a depth of 18,000 ft. This leveraged advanced directional drilling technology adapted from oil and gas to construct horizontal well sections with the final objective being a closed-loop system resembling a radiator. This demonstration occurred in parallel with additional projects underway in Europe and Asia. A performance increase in drilling was observed with the implementation of proprietary technology and use of insulated drillpipe (Cariaga 2023).

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