Geothermal Energy

Geothermal Energy Courses at RES

First Trimester - Renewable Energy Science

Renewable Energy Science (30 ECTS)

Second Trimester - Geothermal Energy (30 ECTS)

GEO601: Geothermal Systems
GEO602: Geothermal Exploration Techniques
GEO603: Drilling Techniques and Logging Methods
GEO604: Reservoir Physics, Well Test Analysis, Monitoring & Forecasting
GEO605: Direct and Indirect Use of Geothermal Resources
GEO606: 3D Visualisation and Modeling Techniques
GEO607: Geothermal Power Plants

Third Trimester - Master's Thesis

Master's Thesis (30 ECTS)


 

Specialization Prerequisites

Courses in thermodynamics, fluid dynamics, geophysics, physical geology, geochemistry, and advanced mathematics.

Individual Modules

Modules are of 1-3 weeks duration and carry 2-6 ECTS credits; 3 hours of lectures in the morning plus a lab/project session for another 3 hours in the afternoon, five days of the week. Students complete individual or group project assignments for each module, take an exam following the completion of each module, and a final exam at the end of the trimester. Before the completion of the second trimester each student has to complete, submit and have approved a detailed thesis proposal. The thesis proposal needs to be written with the guidance of a faculty advisor and approved by the RES Academic Board.

 


GEO601: Geothermal Systems

Course Description: Main characteristics of low-, medium-, and high-enthalphy geothermal reservoirs in various tectonic settings, including thick continental sediment basins, continental and oceanic rifts. Hydrothermal aquifers; magmatic systems; fracture zone systems; hot dry rock (HDR); enhanced geothermal systems; and deep geothermal resources. Brief introduction to deep geothermal drilling; deep geothermal projects; reservoir simulation; and man-made seismicity. Evaluation and analysis of geological-, geophysical-, and geochemical models of low- and high- temperature geothermal systems. Deep geothermal projects, examples from Europe.

Course Duration: 1 week - ECTS Credits: 2


GEO602: Geothermal Exploration Techniques

Course Description: Geophysical methods to identify structural and tectonic features, alteration/metamorphic zones and hydro-geological characteristics. Methods include heat flow surveys; DC-resistivity depth soundings and profiling; EM and MT surveys; magnetic surveys, earthquake monitoring; seismic measurements and seismic reflection. Fundamentals of chemical properties of geothermal fluids.  Review of chemical thermodynamics and heat and mass transfer related to geothermal utilization. Geochemical methods used to evaluate the chemical composition of geothermal fluids and gases; methods of sampling, analysis and interpretation of results. Geothermometers. Estimation of fluid flow and mixing in geothermal reservoirs.

Course Duration: 3 weeks - ECTS Credits: 6


GEO603: Drilling Techniques and Logging Methods

Course Description: Drilling equipment, methods and technology; advanced drilling techniques; design of wells and casing programs, cementing techniques, cleaning and repairs of production wells; and well maintenance. Iceland’s Deep Drilling Project (IDDP). Borehole geology and interpretation of alteration mineralogy of drill cuttings and cores; geophysical well logging; 3D imaging; fracture imaging; stress orientation and stress characterization; and hydraulic fracturing.

Course Duration: 2 weeks - ECTS Credits: 4


GEO604: Reservoir Physics, Well Test Analysis, Monitoring & Forecasting

Course Description: Reservoir physics, including hydrological characteristics and water storage capacity, conceptual models of heat and mass flow within geothermal reservoirs, and assessing the hot water and power production capacity (reserve estimation). Production engineering and flow characteristics in wells. Deliverability, flow rates and pressure. Pressure profiles in reservoirs and reservoir performance; inflow performance of water and steam; pressure profiles in wells for water, steam and two-phase flow; artificial lift and pressure profiles; well-test analysis including down-well surveys and discharge. Physical and chemical monitoring of geothermal reservoirs; monitoring parameters. Real-time monitoring and modeling, model updates, and optimal production strategies. Sustainable utilization and forecasting the long-term response of reservoirs to exploitation; effects of fluid re-injection.

Course Duration: 3 weeks - ECTS Credits: 6


GEO605: Direct and Indirect Use of Geothermal Resources

Course Description: Geotechnical and hydro-geological ground investigation, engineering design, operation and maintenance of shallow geothermal systems. Capital and O&M costs. Cost comparison with conventional heating systems. Geothermal heat pumps (GHP), borehole heat exchangers (BHE) and coupled GHPs. Geothermal groundwater well systems; heat pipe heat-exchangers; analytical and numerical design of borehole heat exchanger fields. Heating and cooling systems. Geothermal response test (GRT), enhanced geothermal response test (EGRT), and geothermal site investigation in the field and in the laboratory. Design of pipe network and of pipe material. Utilization of geothermal energy for swimming pools and health spas, greenhouses and agriculture production, fish farming and aquaculture, snow-melting, and various industrial processes.

Course Duration: 2 weeks - ECTS Credits: 4


GEO606: 3D Visualization and Modeling Techniques

Course Description: Introduction to visualization techniques of spatial data, history, development, applications and possibilities. Pre-modeling data preparation and management. 2D/3D gridding; modeling of fault geometries, building stratigraphic sequences, constructing final 3D volumes, data output, and 2D digitizing operations. Methods of 3D geological model building based on surface data, seismic data, model analysis, validation and understanding. Determining borehole design and positioning. Introduction to the advanced mapping software PETREL and geological models; case studies from Europe of 3D model building. Tutorial on data analysis, statistics, learned workflows, export formats, validation and evaluation of calculated models.

Course Duration: 2 weeks - ECTS Credits: 4


GEO607: Geothermal Power Plants

Course Description: The design, thermodynamics performance, and economics of geothermal power plants for electricity generation – direct (dry) steam plants, single-, double-, and multiple-flash plants; binary-cycle plants, hybrid plants (including Kalina), and combined heat and power (CHP) plants. Power plant efficiency. Power plant equipment or components including turbines, generators, condensers/evaporators/heat exchangers, separators, pipes, pumps production/injection wells, etc. Corrosion or scaling potential. Capital cost, operation and maintenance (O&M) costs. Environmental impacts of geothermal utilization, and mitigation.

Course Duration: 2 week - ECTS Credits: 4