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Mission Statement

The Geothermal Energy & Geofluids group is endowed by the Werner Siemens Foundation and investigates reactive fluid (water, CO2, CxHy, N2) and (geothermal) energy (heat, pressure) transfer in the Earth’s crust employing computer simulations, laboratory experiments and field analyses to gain fundamental insights and to address a wide range of societal goals and concerns.

News

Safe geothermal energy

11.05.2017


© 3sat nano – TV broadcast from Tuesday 9 May on 3sat nano

Scientists are searching for safer drilling methods: geothermal energy can provide sustainable and clean energy right where we need it – however seismicity may be induced. Scientists at ETH Zurich investigate how to prevent these earthquakes.

Link to video


Top Ranking for ETH Zurich’s Earth Sciences

14.03.2017


© ETH Zürich / Marco Carocari

Earth and marine sciences at the Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich was ranked the best in the world. The results were recently published by the QS World University Rankings.
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New Course Geofluids

14.03.2017


© ETH Zurich / Alessandro Della Bella

This semester the new course ‘Geofluids’, offered by the GEG Group, within the Earth Science Masters Program counts 32 registered students.
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The rock crackers

12.03.2017


© Daniel Winkler, ETH Globe

ETH Zurich researchers working at NAGRA’s Grimsel rock laboratory have retreated deep inside the mountain. By fracturing solid rock, they are hoping to re-examine the feasibility of geothermal power plants based on petrothermal technology. (ETH Globe, 01/2017)
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Current Videos

macarthur_100mchange_video_linkInexhaustible resource of clean, renewable Geothermal Energy.
© ETH Zurich
Grimsel rock lab, feasibility of geothermal power plants.
© ETH Zurich
Grimsel rock laboratory, safer drilling methods.
© 3sat nano
A short film about ETH Zurich.
© ETH Zurich

Events

10.10.2018

A combined thermo-mechanical drilling method: Laboratory experiments towards its implementation in the field

Edoardo Rossi (talk)
EGW 2018, Strasbourg, France read more


10.10.2018

Towards a porosity-independent permeability update model for
large-scale reactive transport simulations

Joan Delort Ylla (contributed talk)
EGW 2018, Strasbourg, France read more


10.10.2018

Impact of effective normal stress on two-phase flow through a single fracture with rough surfaces

Marina Grimm Lima (poster presentation)
6th European Geothermal Workshop, Strasbourg read more


10.10.2018

Petrophysical characterization of Nubian Sandstone reservoirs and their potential for geothermal applications; central Gulf of Suez, Egypt

Mahmoud Hefny (poster presentation)
EGW 2018, Strasbourg read more


10.10.2018

Feasibility of combining natural gas recovery and CO2-based geothermal in deep natural gas reservoirs

Justin Ezekiel (poster presentation)
EGW 2018, Strasbourg read more


11.10.2018

Visualizing flow interactions between fracture and matrix using a temporo-ensemble PIV method

Mehrdad Ahkami (poster presentation)
European Geothermal Workshop, Strasbourg read more


NEXT EVENT

30.10.2018

Feasibility of combining natural gas recovery and CO2-based geothermal in deep natural gas reservoirs

Justin Ezekiel (GEG group presentation)
GEG Meetings, ETH Zurich read more


10.12.2018

On the response of tracer tests to fracture aperture variability and its correlation with fracture surface area

Philipp Schaedle (poster presentation)
AGU2018, Washington, D.C., USA read more


13.12.2018

High-resolution temporo-ensemble PIV to resolve pore-scale flow in 3D-printed fractured porous media

Xiang-Zhao Kong (contributed talk)
AGU Fall Meeting 2018, Washington, D.C., USA read more


Papers Alert

Estimating Fluid Flow Rates through Fracture Networks using Combinatorial Optimization

Hobé, A., D. Vogler, M.P. Seybold, A. Ebigbo, R.R. Settgast, and M.O. Saar
Advances in Water Resources, 122, pp. 85-97, 2018. Download


Compressive and Tensile Behavior of 3D-Printed and Natural Sandstones

Perras, M.A., and D. Vogler
Transport in Porous Media, pp. 1-23, 2018. Download


The Effects of High Heating Rate and High Temperature on the Rock Strength: Feasibility Study of a Thermally Assisted Drilling Method

Rossi, E., M.A. Kant, C. Madonna, M.O. Saar, and Ph. Rudolf von Rohr
Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering, 51/9, pp. 2957-2964 , 2018. Download


Numerical simulations and validation of contact mechanics in a granodiorite fracture

Kling, T., D. Vogler, L. Pastewka, F. Amann, and P. Blum
Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering, 51/9, pp. 2805-2824, 2018. Download


The seismo-hydro-mechanical behaviour during deep geothermal reservoir stimulations: open questions tackled in a decameter-scale in-situ stimulation experiment

Amann, F., V. Gischig, K. Evans, et al., A. Kittilä, S. Wiemer, M.O. Saar, S. Löw, Th. Driesner, H. Maurer, and D. Giardini
Solid Earth, pp. 115-137, 2018. Download


Fluid Flow in Unconventional Gas Reservoirs

Xia, T., E. Dontsov, Z. Chen, F. Zhang, and X.-Z. Kong
Geofluids, 2018, 2018. Download


Demonstration of thermal borehole enlargement to facilitate controlled reservoir engineering for deep geothermal, oil or gas systems

Kant, M.A., E. Rossi, J. Duss, F. Amman, M.O. Saar, and P. Rudolf von Rohr
Applied Energy, 212, pp. 1501-1509, 2018. Download


Experiments and Simulations of Fully Hydro-Mechanically coupled Response of Rough Fractures exposed to High Pressure Fluid Injection

Vogler, D., R. R. Settgast, C. Annavarapu, C. Madonna, P. Bayer, and F. Amann
Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 123, pp. 1186-1200, 2018. Download


A Hierarchy of Models for Simulating Experimental Results from a 3D Heterogeneous Porous Medium

Vogler, D., S. Ostvar, R. Paustian, and B.D. Wood
Advances in Water Resources, 114, pp. 149-163, 2018. Download


Open Positions

PhD position

At the Geothermal Energy and Geofluids Group at the Institute of Geophysics in the Department of Earth Sciences. Investigation on evolution of permeability and porosity due to mineral precipitation in natural and/or artificial granite fractures
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Lectures & Courses


Special Courses

SCCER School – Shaping the Energy Transition

17 – 20 October 2017

geophysicsThe SCCER School will present you the big picture of the energy transition and provide insights into how your research can shape it. Three days full of interdisciplinary presentations, debates, and excursions are awaiting you. Expand your network and gain fresh ideas! The SCCER School is open for PhD and postdoctoral students of the ETH domain and Swiss universities, as well as for scientific assistants of universities of applied sciences, who are working in the field of energy research.

Registration

Deadline: 5 September 2017

Program

Lecture of Prof. Martin Saar: Thursday, 19 October 15:00

Regular Courses

Autumn Semester 2017

Geothermal Energy (MSc level)

P. Bayer, D. Karvounis, M.O. Saar, F. Samrock, 651-4109-00L
GEG-instructors involved: M.O. Saar, F. Samrock
Short description
The course will begin with an overview of heat generation and the thermal structure of the Earth. The basic theory describing the flow of heat in the shallow crust will be covered, as will be the methods used to measure it. Petrophysical parameters of relevance to Geothermics, such as thermal conductivity, heat capacity and radiogenic heat productivity, are described together with the laboratory and borehole measurement techniques used to estimate their values. The focus will then shift towards the exploitation of geothermal heat at various depths and temperatures, ranging from electricity and heat production in various types of deep geothermal systems (including high and medium temperature hydrothermal systems, and Engineered Geothermal Systems at depths of 5 km or more), to ground-source heat pumps installed in boreholes at depths of a few tens to hundreds of meters for heating domestic houses.
link to course catalogue

Groundwater (MSc level)

A. Ebigbo, X.Z. Kong, 651-4023-00L
GEG-instructors involved: A. Ebigbo, X.Z. Kong
Short description
The course provides an introduction into quantitative analysis of groundwater flow and solute transport. It is focussed on understanding, formulating, and solving groundwater flow and solute transport problems.
link to course catalogue

Geophysik I (BSc level)

D. Giardini, M.O. Saar, 651-3543-00L
GEG-instructors involved: M.O. Saar
Short description
General knowledge of seismology.
link to course catalogue

Introduction to Oceanography and Hydrogeology (BSc level)

D. Vance, M.O. Saar, 651-3507-00L
GEG-instructors involved: M.O. Saar
Short description
This course is designed to provide an introduction to hydrogeology and oceanography for all Earth Science students at ETH. It provides an overview of the physical controls on water flow in streams, aquifers, and the oceans. It also deals with the basics of groundwater chemistry, biogeochemical cycling in the oceans, the role of the oceans as carbon reservoirs and their dynamic redox state.
link to course catalogue

Spring Semester 2018

Geofluids (MSc level)

X.‑Z. Kong, A. Ebigbo, A. Moreira Mulin Leal, [no course number yet]
GEG-instructors involved: X.‑Z. Kong, A. Ebigbo, A. Moreira Mulin Leal
Short description
This course presents advanced topics of single and multiphase fluid flow, heat transfer, reactive transport, and geochemical reactions in the subsurface. Emphasis is on the understanding of the underlying governing equations of each physical and chemical process, and its relevance to applications, e.g., groundwater management, geothermal energy, CO2 storage, waste disposal, and oil/gas production.
[No link to course catalogue yet]

Case Studies in Exploration and Environmental Geophysics I

M.O. Saar, [no course number yet]
GEG-instructors involved: M.O. Saar
[No link to course catalogue yet]

Case Studies in Exploration and Environmental Geophysics II

M.O. Saar, [no course number yet]
GEG-instructors involved: M.O. Saar
[No link to course catalogue yet]