Novel Productivity Enhancement Concept for a Sustainable Utilization of a Geothermal Resource — SURE’

Projects leader: prof. habil. dr. Saulius Šliaupa


Horizon 2020 (EC)


2016-03-01/ 2019-08-31

Project leader in Lithuania:

Prof. habil. dr. S. Šliaupa


Helmholtz Zentrum Potsdam Deutsches Geoforschungszentrum (GFZ), Technische Universiteit Delft (TU Delft), Hochschule Bochum (Hbo), Islenskar Orkurannsoknir (ISOR), Nederlandse Organisatie Voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek (TNO), Wellservices Bv (WS), Imperial College Of Science Technology And Medicine (Icl),  Geoterma UAB (Geoterma UAB), Nature research Centre (NRC), Danmarks Tekniske Universitet (DTU)

Project description:

Within SURE, a novel productivity enhancement concept for the sustainable utilization of a geothermal reservoir shall be investigated for low to high enthalpy geothermal systems, deploying radial jet drilling technology (RJD). Once proven for geothermal sites, RJD allows to significantly increase the number of economically viable geothermal wells.

RJD is a well proven technique from the oil and gas industry. However the technology has never been applied to many of the fractured rock types, temperature and geochemical conditions encountered in geothermal reservoirs including hard rocks and within high temperature reservoirs.

Having the one and only service provider for radial jet drilling in Europe as a project partner, SURE has an excellent perspective to develop RJD beyond the state of art to stimulate low productive geothermal wells by connecting high permeability structures, like fracture or fault systems or regions of higher rock matrix permeability to an initially uneconomic mother well.

Within SURE, the RJD technology shall be examined at lab and field conditions at different scales, trying to describe relevant processes on the micro scale (laboratory investigations under controlled in-situ conditions), at the meso-scale (laboratory investigations at atmospheric conditions applying field scale technical equipment) as well as at the macro-scale (field scale application). The test program is complemented by basic and applied research providing numerical models capable of reproducing test results, and to be used in practice to predict the added value of RJD prior to performance of the laterals. Improvements that can be achieved by RJD and the side effects of the tested method are compared with the conventional reservoir stimulation methods. The latter will serve as benchmark for the results of the radial jet drilling tested here.