News – What`s happening in energy research

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Campus of the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena and part of the city centre
© Presseamt der Stadt Jena
Preparations underway for deep borehole in Jena

Geothermal energy research in sediment basins

Until now, geothermal energy utilisation has been considered difficult in regions with geological substrata consisting of sedimentary rock. However, attractive heat sources which can suffice for energy utilisation are also situated in many places with such rock formations. A research borehole organised by the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena is intended to clarify the make-up of the deep substratum in the Thuringian Basin and to determine the possibilities for geothermal energy utilisation. In the past week, those in charge of this joint project (named INFLUINS) have discussed the detailed planning of this research borehole, which is scheduled for 2011.

As of 2011, in the north of the city Erfurt in the Thuringian Basin, a borehole is to penetrate at least 1,500 m deep into the geological substratum. In particular, alongside the fundamental geological and geophysical research and the extraction of borehole cores, this project is about studying geothermal potential. The project managers hope that the findings from this deep borehole in Erfurt will yield findings which are characteristic of the entire Thuringian Basin. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research is subsidising the project INFLUINS as fundamental scientific research.

GeneSys – Geothermal energy in the North German Basin

Also in the North German Basin, the deep substratum consists of sedimentary rock. In this region, comprehensive geological investigations were already conducted and geothermal development concepts devised between 2003 and 2009. In the first step, as part of the project GeneSys, the former natural gas borehole "Horstberg Z 1" in Südheide was converted into a research facility and used for the development of geothermal development concepts for sedimentary rock. In the second subproject, one of the concepts developed there is to be implemented in Hanover, so as to provide a complete geothermal heat supply for GEOZENTRUM Hannover in the future, as a demonstration project for an office complex. The borehole required for this already successfully reached its target depth of 3,900 m at the end of 2009 and in the coming weeks the subsequent development work shall begin. The recently published BINE Projektinfo brochure "Geothermal energy from sedimentary rock" presents the GeneSys projects in Horstberg and Hanover, which are partly subsidised by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology.


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