Advanced Geothermal Turbodrill

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Approximately 50% of the cost of a new geothermal power plant is in the wells that must be drilled. Compared to the majority of oil and gas wells, geothermal wells are more difficult and costly to drill for several reasons. First, most U.S. geothermal resources consist of hot, hard crystalline rock formations which drill much slower than the relatively soft sedimentary formations associated with most oil and gas production. Second, high downhole temperatures can greatly shorten equipment life or preclude the use of some technologies altogether. Third, producing viable levels of electricity from geothermal fields requires the use of large ... continued below

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92 pages

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Maurer, W. C. May 1, 2000.

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Description

Approximately 50% of the cost of a new geothermal power plant is in the wells that must be drilled. Compared to the majority of oil and gas wells, geothermal wells are more difficult and costly to drill for several reasons. First, most U.S. geothermal resources consist of hot, hard crystalline rock formations which drill much slower than the relatively soft sedimentary formations associated with most oil and gas production. Second, high downhole temperatures can greatly shorten equipment life or preclude the use of some technologies altogether. Third, producing viable levels of electricity from geothermal fields requires the use of large diameter bores and a high degree of fluid communication, both of which increase drilling and completion costs. Optimizing fluid communication often requires creation of a directional well to intersect the best and largest number of fracture capable of producing hot geothermal fluids. Moineau motor stators made with elastomers cannot operate at geothermal temperatures, so they are limited to the upper portion of the hole. To overcome these limitations, Maurer Engineering Inc. (MEI) has developed a turbodrill that does not use elastomers and therefore can operate at geothermal temperatures. This new turbodrill uses a special gear assembly to reduce the output speed, thus allowing a larger range of bit types, especially tri-cone roller bits, which are the bits of choice for drilling hard crystalline formations. The Advanced Geothermal Turbodrill (AGT) represents a significant improvement for drilling geothermal wells and has the potential to significantly reduce drilling costs while increasing production, thereby making geothermal energy less expensive and better able to compete with fossil fuels. The final field test of the AGT will prepare the tool for successful commercialization.

Physical Description

92 pages

Notes

OSTI as DE00765115

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  • Other Information: PBD: 1 May 2000

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  • Report No.: DOE/ID/13680
  • Grant Number: FG07-98ID13680
  • DOI: 10.2172/765115 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 765115
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc722428

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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Creation Date

  • May 1, 2000

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 29, 2015, 5:31 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • April 24, 2018, 5:13 p.m.

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Maurer, W. C. Advanced Geothermal Turbodrill, report, May 1, 2000; Idaho Falls, Idaho. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc722428/: accessed June 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.