GeoEnergy 2021

Conference program

The impact and awareness of geothermal as a renewal heat and electric power resource is growing globally. According to the 2019 EGEC geothermal market report, geothermal development has had a lower growth than expected for the last decade, due to both legislative, technological, and business challenges, but the EGEC president Miklos Antics expects the current decade to be the geothermal decade. CGER is also now experiencing an increasing number of requests for information on geothermal activities and potential in Norway.

Traditional geothermal heat pumps and geothermal heat storage will remain central in Norwegian exploitation, but new markets are now being investigated, such as geothermal electricity production on Svalbard, deep sea, and through exploitation of oil and gas infrastructure on the continental shelf. International collaboration, through such programs as Horizon Europe and ERA, will also further development in Norway. The ongoing revision of the Energy21 strategy under the Norwegian Oil and Energy ministry will determine policy on renewable energy, and therefore be central to geothermal research and innovation in Norway moving ahead.

This year's conference will focus on creating a better understanding of how geothermal fits into the Norwegian energy budget and economy, thereby contributing to a sustainable development of geothermal as a renewable energy resource in Norway, through a national effort and through collaboration with expertise and knowhow internationally. Virtual networking will be facilitated in the breaks, enabling follow up of talks, following up with existing contacts and establishing new ones. We aim to do our utmost to make this a relevant and rewarding conference despite the current covid19 situation.

Welcoming address

September 1st and 2nd 0900-0910

Fionn Iversen, CGER


Geothermal energy in Norway as a low emission society - strategy and needs

Wednesday September 1st, 0910-0940

Lars Andreas Lunde, Olje- og energidepartementet / Ministry of Petroleum and Energy

This keynote will give the audience an understanding of how the Norwegian government sees the future role of geothermal energy in Norway.

Status on geothermal exploitation and market opportunities in Norway

Thursday September 2nd, 0910-0940

Thor Erik Musæus, Geothermal Energy Nordic AS

The potential for geothermal exploitation in Norway is huge and under-communicated. Heating and hot water represents an important part of Norway's total energy consumption. Energy from the crust of the earth will play a key role in reducing our climate footprint.

Technical session 1.
Power Production

Wednesday September 1. 0940 - 1100

Session 1 will focus on geothermal electricity production, covering both process and technology for high temperature geothermal wells. The session contents reflect strong collaboration between Norway and Iceland in this area. Building on technology and knowhow from oil and gas operations is an important key to such collaboration, with further potential application in hotspots across Europe and beyond.

Session chairs: Sæunn Halldorsdottir, UiB, Fionn Iversen, NORCE

Geothermal power production on Iceland - state of the art and remaining challenges

September 1. 0940

Árni Magnússon, ISOR

Research on Iceland's energy resources goes back to the 18th century. Systematic energy research by Icelandic government institutes started in 1945 and has been carried out continuously ever since. Iceland GeoSurvey and its predecessor have from the start played a key role in this work. These activities of the Icelandic power industry have resulted in about 66% of the primary energy use in Iceland has its source in geothermal energy. Generating electricity with geothermal energy has increased significantly in recent years. Geothermal power facilities currently generate 25% of the country's total electricity production.

There are several, state of the art high temperature powerplants in Iceland, dating back to the 1970´s, generating from geothermal resources. These are Hellisheiði Powerplant (303 MWe), Nesjavellir (120 MWe), Reykjanes (100 MWe) Þeistareikir (90 MWe), Svartsengi (75 MWe) and Krafla (60 MWe).

Direct use applications have as well been a very important part of geothermal utilisation in Iceland, where district heating has been the main beneficiary of hot water production along with balneology, aquaculture, drying of foods, greenhouse growing etc, either through co-generation with power production or directly from low temperature resources all over the country.

The Iceland Deep Drilling Project (IDDP) is a study of high temperature hydrothermal systems in Iceland in the attempt to increase the output from conventional geothermal fields. It is a collaborative effort by a consortium of Icelandic power companies and the Icelandic government, formed to determine if utilizing supercritical geothermal fluids would improve the economics of power productions, reaching temperatures above 450°C at about 5 km depth. A standard 2.5 km deep high temperature geothermal well power equivalent to approximately 5 MWe while an IDDP well may be expected to yield up to 50 MWe.

Technology development for sustainable exploitation of geothermal energy from high temperature wells

September 1. 1000

Sturla Sæther, Equinor, Hieu-Nguyen Hoang, SINTEF

For sustainable exploitation of geothermal energy, robust and cost-efficient casing systems are an absolute requirement. However, the harsh operation conditions encountered in the high-temperature (HT) geothermal reservoirs are very challenging and are detrimental for the well integrity. Improper materials selection and design principles may lead to serious failure events, and loss of the production well, as reported in many HT geothermal well projects. In order to solve the current challenges, a novel design tool, Casinteg, was developed in the HotCaSe project for efficient global well analyses. The developed tool aims to provide a better understanding of the influence of the high temperature operation conditions on the well integrity and to bridge the knowledge gap in the current design standard codes. The tool is currently used to evaluate robust well design solutions for the planned IDDP3 well where the operation condition up to 450⁰C can be expected.

Silica solubility in deep geothermal wells

September 1. 1020

Morten Tjelta, IFE

Silica scaling is an important issue in deep geothermal energy wells and knowledge about solubility is important for scaling prediction and mitigation strategies. However, there is limited data available at high temperatures in the presence of salt. This work describes an experimental setup developed to study solubility at high pressures and temperatures (up to 500 °C and 350 bar). Benchmark experiments show quartz solubility values in agreement with literature data.

Simulations and analysis of induced seismicity for a hydraulic stimulation test at the Reykjanes geothermal field, Iceland

September 1. 1040

Eirik Keilegavlen, UiB

The ERiS project was a joint project of the University of Bergen and NORSAR with collaboration with Equinor and international partners, with central partners in Iceland. The project aimed at improved understanding of low-pressure stimulation of enhanced geothermal systems. To that end the project undertook an interdisciplinary study of a stimulation experiment in the Reykjanes geothermal field in Iceland. The aim of the study was to construct a numerical simulation model based on state-of-the-art numerical tools and compare simulation results with seismic observations of induced events.

We present the workflow used to combine local and regional geological data, seismic observations and information gained from the construction and initial operation of the injection well. The resulting simulation model incorporates fluid flow, deformation of the host rock and sliding of the main faults in the reservoir. The availability of such a simulation model allowed for experimentation with scenarios for fluid flow parameters. The presentation will emphasize the critical role of integrating data from different sources, as well as challenges and opportunities relating to interdisciplinary work.

Technical session 2.
International Collaboration

Wednesday September 1. 1200-1320

Session 2 will focus on international collaboration within geothermal, providing an overview of possibilities for both industry and research collaboration with Europe and beyond, also covering development cases. Such collaboration and the related competency building are important for strengthening efforts in Norway. The session will also focus on how the benefits of geothermal development can be strengthened through combination with other green technology development, such as carbon capture and storage.

Session chair: Fionn Iversen, NORCE


September 1. 1220

Carsten Sørlie, Equinor

GEOTHERMICA brings together owners of European and US national geothermal research and innovation programs. GEOTHERMICA's objective is to promote research and innovation in geothermal energy to make geothermal energy reliable, safe, and cost-competitive. GEOTHERMICA combines the financial resources and know-how of 20 geothermal energy research and innovation program owners and managers from 16 countries and their regions. The DEEPEN project is one of 7 projects receiving funding under the 2nd call from GEOTHERMICA. The focus for the DEEPEN project is the high resource risk and high upstream exploration costs as key barriers to scaling up geothermal energy development globally. Reducing the upstream risk has, for a long time, been a priority area of the sector on several fronts. The DEEPEN project aims to contribute to this goal by increasing the probability of success when drilling for geothermal fluids in magmatic systems. This will be achieved by developing improved exploration methods and an improved framework for the joint interpretation of exploration data using the Play Fairway Analysis (PFA) methodology. The Norwegian contribution to DEEPEN by Equinor and NORSAS is funded by the Research Council of Norway. The presentation will provide an introduction to GEOTHERMICA as an arena for collaborative research and innovation and an overview of the DEEPEN project.

Lower emissions from geothermal power generation by capturing them for either reuse or storage, GECO H2020 project

September 1. 1240

Bergur Sigfússon, Reykjavik Energy/Carbfix

GECO h2020 is an innovative EU funded research project which aims to provide a clean, safe, and cost-efficient non-carbon and sulfur-emitting geothermal energy across Europe and the World. With demo sites in Iceland, Germany and Turkey and partners located in France, Italy, Spain, Norway, Turkey, Germany, UK and Iceland, it builds upon the success of the recently completed CARBFIX project.

SEE4GEO Geothermica project

September 1. 1300

Kirsti Midttømme and Walter Wheeler, NORCE

Being able to identify water-filled fracture networks is essential for the design and operation of open geothermal systems. Traditional seismic imaging techniques fail to resolve fluid-phase properties at the scale required for targeted drilling, while purely electromagnetic approaches typically provide limited, low-resolution constraints on the rock structure. The goal in the Geothermica SEE4GEO project is to assess the use of seismoelectric effects (SEE), which arise from seismic-to-electromagnetic conversion in naturally charged porous media with a certain degree of fluid saturation.

Technical session 3.
Improving cost efficiency and achieving successful projects

Thursday September 2. 0940-1100

Success in geothermal development projects requires stakeholder management, reliability and efficiency in well construction, and accounting for regional potential and challenges. Collaborating with and learning from development in neighbouring countries is a key part of this process. Learnings from projects and development in Denmark are presented together with ongoing technology development for improving drilling and well completion efficiency, complemented by a concept study for geothermal development on Svalbard.

Session chairs: Jan Atle Andresen, Huisman and Torbjørn Vrålstad, SINTEF

Geoop - Bringing execution to ideas and realising geothermal projects

September 2. 0940

Bill Harrar, GEOOP

We are driving geothermal energy forward. The path to successful projects is narrow and has its share of barriers. We have masterminded the hashtag #500MWin2030 which we use to guide us in dealing with all of the stakeholders influencing projects. We will share our views and our findings on how to develop successful geothermal projects.

New Applications for Geothermal Developments

September 2. 1000

Korneel van der Meer, Huisman

In September 2021, a new test well will be drilled at the Rijswijk Center for Sustainable Geo-energy, a test facility for geothermal developments, using a newly developed Enhanced-Casing Drilling system with a unique, relatively simple, full-mechanical (automation-ready) Rotary Steerable System. Composite casing will be installed in the completed well, allowing for new (logging) data evaluations and a composite section in the BHA is used as a see-through window for (EM-)MWD data communications.

During the real environment drilling test, a camera system will be deployed that acquires data that can be used for both formation evaluation and drilling optimization. This digital mud logging system takes full advantage of the digital age, acquiring massive amounts of data, optimally being used for enhanced, safer, and faster drilling of the wells of the future.

In the presentation, the application of the above-mentioned technologies will be discussed as well as the integration of those at the test center and applicability to geothermal environments.

Deep geothermal energy in Svalbard

September 2. 1020

Malte Jochmann, Store Norske Spitsbergen Kulkompani AS

Subsurface temperatures in Svalbard are high compared to mainland Norway, with measured geothermal gradients of 25 to 55 K per km. Longyearbyen is among the places in Svalbard with the highest measured gradients. In our talk we will present the status of an ongoing project targeting the geothermal heat supply of a school building in Longyearbyen, based on a DBHE (Deep Borehole Heat Exchanger) with a depth between 1000 and 2000 m. The concept study is conducted by Store Norske, GTML, and UNIS. We will present our plans to meet the challenges related to subsurface geology and permafrost, and present our vision for future geothermal energy supply in Svalbard.

Innovation in Underground Thermal Energy Storages with Borehole Heat Exchangers - BHEsINNO (EEA Poland/Norway grant)

September 2. 1040

Mohsen Assadi, UiS

Geothermal energy and heat storage underground have potential to impact energy transition towards carbon restricted energy solutions considerably. The main goal of the BHEsINNO project is to establish international collaboration and knowledge transfer to utilize synergies between the project partners and deliver excellent outcome quality.

Technical session 4.
Heat storage and energy systems

Thursday September 2. 1220-1320

An energy systems approach is applicable for geothermal development in Norway as a whole, combining geothermal heat with other renewable energy sources. This session covers energy systems including ground heat storage, energy systems for societal infrastructure, and case examples.

Session chairs:Torbjørn Vrålstad, SINTEF and Christian von der Ohe, GCE NODE

Wesselkvartalet - open well hybrid geo-energy system

September 2. 1220

Manon Van Goethem, Ruden

Wesselkvartalet in Asker is unique by providing geo-energy and storage with open groundwater wells in bedrock. The project utilizes 18 deep groundwater wells up to 400 meter in depth and 98 shallow wells to store that energy for peak loads. Combined with this unique approach is a detailed study into the geology of Wesselkvartalet performed to optimize the geo-energy system.

Pilot-project for de-icing with deep energy wells, Oslo Airport.

September 2. 1240

Thilo Theloy, GTML

A summary of the project, its findings, and the potential for direct use of heat from deep energy wells in different applications.

Borehole Thermal Energy Storage systems - a key solution for sustainable energy in polar regions?

September 2. 1300

Rasmus Bøckman

Renewable energy from wind and solar systems has in recent years developed into the cheapest source of energy. The obvious challenge with these sources, especially in small grid systems, are the periods where production and consumption does not correlate. In colder regions heating is often the main component of the energy consumption and by solving the "bridging problem" with a BTES (Borehole Thermal Energy Storage) system it is possible to increase the portion of renewable energy in the system.

Program Committee

  • Fionn Iversen, NORCE. Program Chair
  • Ranveig Nygaard Bjørk, NORCE
  • Sæunn Halldorsdottir, UiB
  • Jan Atle Andresen, Huismann
  • Christian von der Ohe, GCE NODE
  • Torbjørn Vrålstad, SINTEF