The drilling and production department’s research efforts are financed in majority by third-party funds and have a longstanding history. Emphasis is put on question of drilling technology, well integrity, medium degradation and stimulation as well as production optimization. In context of the German energy transformation and the general desire to develop a base load capable energy source, the department has been working for years on technology that is thought to reduce geothermal energy’s cost and make it economic without subsidies. For example, in the 90s the ITE was part of a research program that was concerned with hammer drilling. 20 years onwards this technology is considered an important factor for less expensive geothermal wells. Further research in this area deals with special well heads and the longevity of the well design.

The increasing importance of automation is addressed by the department through various works, too. For example, as part of a PhD work a system was developed for automated selection of the best-suited drilling rig. Further research concerning automation is currently in a planning stage.


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