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Drilling cost effectiveness and feasibility of high-temperature drilling - Reykjavik, Iceland, Workshop4
Drilling cost effectiveness and feasibility of high-temperature drilling - Reykjavik, Iceland, Workshop4
1-5 July 2007 ISOR
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From an ENhanced Geothermal Innovative Network for Europe to an European Geothermal Drilling Program?
The European Commission support for geothermal 
energy research has been constant since the end of the 
eighties but has significantly increased within its 6th R&D
Framework Program. The ENGINE Coordination Action 
(ENhanced Geothermal Innovative Network for Europe) 
is aimed at co-ordinating present R&D initiatives for 
Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS), ranging from the 
resource investigation and assessment stage to 
exploitation monitoring. Thirty five partners are 
involved in ENGINE, representing 15 European 
Countries plus Mexico, El Salvador and Philippines. By
mid-term, the project has organised 2 conferences and 
4 specialised workshops. Already after one year, the 
material available on the web site
reveals a strong motivation of the scientific community 
to update the framework of activities, preparing a Best 
Practice Handbook and defining new ambitious research
Due to the increasing price of energy and the need to 
reduce greenhouse gas emission, there is a noticeable 
increase in interest in geothermal energy from the 
industry in Europe. A Stakeholder Committee has been 
created to enhance links between R&D teams
and stakeholders, i.e. private or public firms and 
authorities either already involved in geothermal 
energy, or will possibly be in the near future. The aim of
this committee is to provide information about on going 
R&D efforts in Europe about Enhanced Geothermal 
Systems and give insight into the newest achievements 
made by industrial projects. Strategic guidance to the 
Executive Group and to Contractors in general is 
expected through suggestions and recommendations of 
the Committee. Several points of convergences are 
already underlined. 
The general question of demonstrating the efficiency of 
a wide range of geothermal applications has been 
raised. If all R&D teams and stakeholders are convinced, 
an effort of communication in Europe still has to be done 
to promote the geothermal energy as a cost-efficient 
alternative source of energy, whether from high-
enthalpy fields like in Tuscany (Italy); Iceland or 
Guadalupe (France) or from very low enthalpy in Norway 
or Switzerland where geothermal heat pumps are idely 
spread. This is the  first point of convergence and a 
communication plan to be proposed. Several 
stakeholders express their interest for such an 
organisation as ENGINE that aims at co-ordinating 
present research and development initiatives for 
Enhanced Geothermal Systems. Thus, the need for good 
synthesis of the knowledge and collection of existing 
data for modelling and assessment of the resources, 
prior to drilling is emphasized. R&D teams have, on their 
own, underlined the need of a sustainable
support of industrial partners and public bodies to 
ambitious research projects. This is the second point of 
convergence that fully justifies the existence of such
Stakeholder Committee. From this convergence of 
interest, and in agreement with its main objectives, 
ENGINE should play the role of a scientific exchange 
platform for promoting past and on-going experiences 
by making them visible and reproducible.
The needs for research expressed by the stakeholders 
are in general aimed at specific obstacles for improving 
cost-efficiency of existing technologies like improvement 
of submersible pumps, better combination of heat and 
power generation and control of scaling in surface 
installations. The main challenging problem that they 
have addressed is the investigation of the possible links 
between geothermal energy and CO2 capture, 
sequestration and storage. For R&D teams involved in 
EGS, the proceedings of the mid-term conference 
reveals a wide spectrum of themes like the reduction of 
the geological risk during exploration of deep resources, 
development of new stimulation strategies and the 
mitigation of the induced seismicity… These differences 
in establishing priorities are related to the 
fundamentally different missions of R&D and industrial 
projects. However, as mentioned above, the 
development of a scientific exchange platform is of 
common interest for both. Definition of research projects 
supported by the stakeholder committee should be a 
target for this platform that could be presented to the 
EU commission as a possible contribution for
the future work programme of the FP7. 
Stakeholders and R&D teams consider that the 
development of enhanced geothermal systems still 
requires the definition of an ambitious research program 
at the scale of Europe that will federate the research 
capacity and limit the financial risk by sharing the 
investment. Such a program, that could be 
for example an European Geothermal Drilling Program 
requires an unified approach of both scientist and
stakeholders and constitutes a third point of 
convergence. To achieve this goal, ENGINE, or another 
collaborative action after the end of ENGINE, must 
become a “political” platform that will have the technical 
and economic background to propose and support new 
projects. Among these new projects, the evaluation of 
the potential of former oil and gas field could also be 
one way to limit the risk and start new demonstration 
projects. Such a European geothermal drilling program 
could be promoted in parallel at the level of policy 
makers for implementing incentive politics for
supporting geothermal energy as a contribution to 
achievements of EU objectives for renewable energies 
and greenhouse gas reduction.
Id: 5
Place: ISOR
Grensasvegur 9
Room: Vidgelmir
Starting date:
02-Jul-2007   10:55
Duration: 20'
Primary Authors: Dr. LEDRU, Patrick (BRGM)
Co-Authors: Dr. HUENGES, ERNST (GFZ)
Presenters: Dr. LEDRU, Patrick
Material: slides Slides

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