Electric Power Generation from Co-Produced Fluids from Oil and Gas Wells Geothermal Project

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Last modified on July 22, 2011.

Project Title Electric Power Generation from Co-Produced Fluids from Oil and Gas Wells
Project Type / Topic 1 Recovery Act: Geothermal Technologies Program
Project Type / Topic 2 Geothermal Energy Production from Low Temperature Resources, Coproduced Fluids from Oil and Gas Wells, and Geopressured Resources
Project Type / Topic 3 Coproduced Fluids for Oil and Gas Wells
Project Description The geothermal organic Rankine cycle (ORC) system will be installed at an oil field operated by Encore Acquisition in western North Dakota where geothermal fluids occur in sedimentary formations at depths of 10,000 feet. The power plant will be operated and monitored for two years to develop engineering and economic models for geothermal ORC energy production. The data and knowledge acquire during the O & M phase can be used to facilitate the installation of similar geothermal ORC systems in other oil and gas settings.

The project’s proposed application at the Encore Acquisition site provides an excellent opportunity to test geothermal ORC technology under various operating conditions found in low-temperature geothermal resources and in the widely varying continental climate setting of North Dakota. Development of geothermal power using ORC technology throughout the Williston Basin appears highly promising due to the region’s cool climate (mean annual temperature of 50°F) and the availability of abundant geothermal fluid at 150-300°F in a number of oil producing formations. There are 102 unitized oil fields in the North Dakota portion of the Basin, and these fields bring co-produced fluids to central localities where large fluid volumes can be adapted for significant ORC power production.

State North Dakota
Objectives Demonstrate the technologic and economic feasibility of generating electricity from low temperature (T~210 ºF) geothermal water using binary, organic Rankine cycle (ORC) technology with air as the condensing medium.
Awardees (Company / Institution) University of North Dakota

Awardee Website http://www.geology.und.edu/
Partner 1 Encore Acquisition
Partner 2 Berrendo Geothermal
Partner 3 North Dakota Geological Survey








Funding Opportunity Announcement DE-FOA-0000109

DOE Funding Level (total award amount) $1,733,864.00
Awardee Cost Share $1,734,058.00
Total Project Cost $3,467,922.00



Principal Investigator(s) William Gosnold, University of North Dakota
Other Principal Investigators Michael Mann, University of North Dakota; and Hossein Salehfar University of North Dakota

Targets / Milestones The team of university and industry engineers, scientists, and project developers will evaluate the power capacity, efficiency, and economics of five commercially available ORC engines in collaboration with the equipment manufacturers.

It is important to disseminate widely the results of this project, and this will be done through local, state, and national media contacts, participation in energy forums, and in presentations at professional meetings. If the U.S. is to broadly accept and adopt geothermal technology, success stories and guidelines for developing viable projects must be brought to the public’s attention. Successful demonstration that base-load power can be generated from low-temperature geothermal resources will spawn a new domestic industry, lead to job creation, and would be a positive step toward increasing domestic energy supplies and reducing CO2 buildup in the atmosphere. To address the need for development of a skilled work force and to facilitate entrepreneurship in development of oil field geothermal resources, training of engineers for careers in the geothermal industry are included as objectives for this project.





Location of Project Williston Basin (Bowman County), ND



Impacts Opportunity to

test geothermal ORC technology under various operating conditions found in low-temperature geothermal resources and in the widely varying continental climate setting of North Dakota.

Funding Source American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

References EERE Geothermal Technologies Programs[1]

References

  1. EERE Geothermal Technologies Programs