2nd GEMex Side-event

GEMex researchers will present their results during the European Geothermal Workshop on 9-10 October 2019 in Karlsruhe, Germany.

GEMex researchers are invited to present their results during the EGW on:

  • Results from geological, geochemical and geophysical investigations in Los Humeros and Acoculco, Mexico

  • Results from geological, temperature and reservoir modelling

  • Results from technology development for super hot geothermal reservoirs

More info on this event here

Drilling and Completion in super-hot systems: research ongoing


Figure 7: Field trip of GZB in Los Humeros Geothermal Field, Veracruz, Mexico

Research is ongoing to assess drilling into a super-hot geothermal system. Currently, the work is focused on analysis of various types of drilling data from wells in Los Humeros Geothermal Field LHGF acquired from CFE (Comisión Federal de Electricidad –Los Humeros concession title holder), in order to better understand the applied drilling and completion techniques and come out with the set of recommendations for future deep drilling projects in that area, including drilling below current productive reservoir. The main focus is put on aiding casing design process, determining safe operating window during drilling and primary cementing operations and their challenges.

A joint meeting between CFE and GZB (International geothermal center Bochum) took place in February 2018 in Morelia. The main aim of the meeting was to understand the technology used in Los Humeros to drill and complete high-temperature geothermal wells, investigate potential challenges faced during drilling for such resource and acquire data registered during drilling and logging activities for further analysis and mitigation of the potential problems in the area.

Furthermore, a workshop was organised in June 2018 in Bochum, Germany. The main goal of the workshop was to present an update on the progress so far, determine further steps as well as analyse drilling data obtained from CFE. Some of the concerns raised during the workshop, regard mainly about underbalance drilling technology, managed pressure drilling operations, cementing practises, geomechanical modelling, fracture and pore pressure predictions, post-cementing logging and cement quality. The workshop emphasised the need of evaluating cementing reports and parameters from primary cementing operations in Los Humeros for better understanding of cementing operations in Los Humeros as well as extending geomechanical modelling carried out by GZB to more wells in LHGF.

Read more: “Drilling and Well Completion Challenges in the Los Humeros Geothermal Field, Mexico” by Michal Kruszewski et al, 42nd GRC Annual Meeting, 14-17 Oct 2018, Reno (Nevada, US)

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Acoculco

The site at Acoculco, foreseen for EGS development, has been explored by two deep wells drilled by the CFE (Comisión Federal de Electricidad). These wells found hardly any fluids but temperatures around 300°C at a depth of 2 km. The lack of fluids at depth is surprising, as this area of Mexico is subject to abundant precipitation. Nonetheless, the high temperature gradient makes it an interesting target for exploitation and the lack of a clear resource makes it an ideal region for testing our knowledge on how to constrain an area where EGS can be performed.

Los Humeros

The geothermal system at Los Humeros is currently exploited. The northern part of the area, however, is much hotter (>380°C) than the wells used for production today. The development of this part of the reservoir presents a challenge, both because of the high temperature and because of the water chemistry. In addition, the area has only been poorly characterised by geophysical and geological surveys. Therefore our understanding required for the development and exploitation of this super-hot resource is limited. The uncertainty about the potential of this resource and the technical challenges involved with the development of such a super-hot geothermal system currently prevent its economic development.