Geothermal systems simulation: A case study

Guerrero-Martinez, F. J., Verma, S. P., Younger, P. L. and Paul, M. (2015) Geothermal systems simulation: A case study. In: World Geothermal Congress 2015, Melbourne, Australia, 19-25 April 2015,

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Geothermal reservoir simulation is a key step for developing sustainable and efficient strategies for the exploitation of geothermal resources. It is applied in the assessment of several areas of reservoir engineering, such as reservoir performance and re-injection programs, pressure decline in depletion, phase transition conditions, and natural evolution of hydrothermal convection systems. Fluid flow and heat transfer in rock masses, fluid-rock chemical interaction and rock mass deformation are some of the processes addressed in reservoir modelling. The case study of the Las Tres Virgenes (LTV) geothermal field (10 MWe), Baja California Sur, Mexico is presented. Three dimensional (3D) natural state simulations were carried out from emplacement and cooling of two spherical magma chambers using a conductive approach. A conceptual model of the volcanic system was developed on a lithostratigraphic and geochronological basis. Magma chamber volumes were established from eruptive volumes estimations. The thermophysical properties of the medium were assumed to correspond to the dominant rock in each lithological unit as an initial value, and further calibration was made considering histograms of experimentally obtained thermophysical properties of rocks. As the boundaries of the model lie far from the thermal anomaly, we assumed specified temperature boundaries. A Finite Volume (FV) numerical scheme was implemented in a Fortran 90 code to solve the heat equation. Static formation temperatures from well logs were used for validation of the numerical results. Good agreement was observed in those geothermal wells dominated by conductive heat transfer. For other wells, however, it is clear that conduction alone cannot explain observed behaviour, three-dimensional convective models are being implemented for future multiphysics simulations.

Item Type:Conference Proceedings
Additional Information:Paper no. 22152
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Younger, Professor Paul and Paul, Professor Manosh
Authors: Guerrero-Martinez, F. J., Verma, S. P., Younger, P. L., and Paul, M.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Systems Power and Energy
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 The Authors
Publisher Policy:Reproduced with the permission of the authors.
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