Geothermal energy is a renewable energy source that is derived from the heat generated by the Earth's core. The Earth's core is a very hot and molten layer of rock that lies beneath the Earth's surface. This heat can be harnessed to generate power (electricity) or heat.
Geothermal energy is considered a renewable energy source because it does not produce greenhouse gas emissions or other pollutants. It is also a reliable and consistent source of energy, as it does not depend on the weather or the time of day, unlike solar or wind power. However, the installation of geothermal energy systems can be costly, and they are only feasible in areas where geothermal energy resources are readily available.
Geothermal energy is generated in different ways. In natural geothermal systems, hot water and steam rise to the surface from deep underground reservoirs. These systems are found in areas where the Earth's crust is thin and there are active volcanoes, geysers, or hot springs.
Two distinct artificial geothermal energy systems exist; ground source heating and cooling, and geothermal heat and power.
For ground source, heat pumps systems use the constant temperature of the Earth below the surface to heat and cool buildings. The system circulates water or a mixture of water and antifreeze through pipes that are buried in the ground. In the winter, the fluid absorbs heat from the Earth and carries it to the building. In the summer, the process is reversed, and the fluid absorbs heat from the building and carries it to the cooler Earth below.
Hydrothermal and petrothermal (EGS) systems, provide both heat and power, through deep geothermal sources. In conventional hydrothermal systems the heat is transported by natural groundwater, circulating within deep aquifers.
(Left image displays a geothermal power plant - sourced: GreenESA)
Seismic data can provide valuable insights into the subsurface structure and behaviour of geothermal systems, which can help geothermal project developers to de-risk investment decisions and projects.
While seismic data has helped the oil and gas industry unlock the subsurface for decades, its potential to do the same in other businesses, such as geothermal, has remained largely untapped. This is primarily due to cost and complexity of acquiring seismic data on land.
Like oil and gas, the geothermal industry can use seismic to look for certain geological formations, faults and fractures in the Earth’s crust and make decisions about where to drill. Understanding the structural geology and stratigraphy of the subsurface is essential in this business.
Mapping the subsurface structure: Seismic data can be used to create a detailed map of the subsurface structure, which is important for locating and characterising geothermal reservoirs. This can help geothermal project developers to determine the best approach for developing the prospect.
Identifying the depth and thickness of geothermal reservoirs: Seismic data can provide information on the depth and thickness of geothermal reservoirs, which can help geothermal project developers to estimate the resource potential and plan drilling and completion operations accordingly.
Characterising geothermal reservoirs: Seismic data can be used to identify the rock types and properties that make up the geothermal reservoir, such as porosity and permeability. This information can help geothermal project developers to better understand the flow of fluids through the reservoir, and to optimize the design of the production and injection wells.
Monitoring reservoir performance: Seismic data can be used to monitor the performance of a geothermal reservoir over time. Changes in seismic activity, such as earthquakes or microseismic events, can provide information on the pressure and fluid movement within the reservoir. This can help geothermal project developers to adjust production and injection rates to optimize energy production and reduce the risk of reservoir damage.
An end-to-end solution comprising of survey planning, survey design and optimisation, delivery of seismic acquisition programs using cutting-edge technology and techniques, seismic data processing solutions, and interpretation
Development of a seismic survey plan (single project or long-term (multi-year program)) to support permitting/regulation compliance
Design of a fully optimised 2D, pseudo-3D, 3D, seismicity, or monitoring survey
Efficient and cost-effective seismic inclusive of the world's smallest, lightest and most affordable receiver system, source technologies and the survey acquisition team required to execute the survey
Low cost, fast-track seismic data processing, inclusive of time, depth and analysis of seismicity data
As the creators of the world’s smallest, lightest and most affordable seismic receiver node, STRYDE makes seismic accessible to the geothermal industry by reducing costs and logistical requirements, minimising HSE risk and environmental footprint and allowing seismic to be acquired in urban and environmentally restricted areas.
Use of low-cost wireless technology allows for the creation of detailed imaging of the subsurface that can be used to identify the exact location of energy and subsurface risk, especially when high-density techniques are applied to the survey design.
At STRYDE, we pride ourselves on enabling fast and efficient methods of land seismic acquisition. Whether that be in relation to the sensor technology itself or our node management systems, acquiring seismic on large and complex areas of land at pace, is one of the main benefits companies can experience using STRYDE.
Not only can companies significantly reduce OPEX and CAPEX costs associated with purchasing or leasing the seismic receiver equipment, but the efficiencies and cost reduction opportunities on the seismic crew enables seismic contractors to be more competitive than ever before, and for the end-users of the data to acquire the data they need at a much lower cost.
When compared to other methods of subsurface exploration, miniature wireless technology like the STRYDE Nodes™ are proven to reduce environmental impact by minimising the need for line clearing, transportation vehicles and camp emissions due to the portability of the node and the ability to manage and transport them with less people, on foot.
Traditional land seismic acquisition methods can be costly and expose workers to significant health, safety, and environmental risks. However, the advancement in technology and new land seismic solutions such as the STRYDE node can help to minimise the exposure to potential HSE risks by having less crew in the field, less driving and minimal line clearing.
Using STRYDE nodes to rapidly acquire and process land seismic data is allowing operators to accelerate decision making on project investment or quickly select and plan well locations to determine project economics. This reduced time sale is allowing operates to focus scarce financial and human resources on the most efficient projects.