Cockrell School of Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin


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Graduate Seminar - Dr. Timothy Kneafsey


Monday, October 23, 2017


03:00pm - 04:00pm


CPE 2.204


Speaker:  Dr. Timothy Kneafsey, Geological Staff Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Title of Seminar: “The EGS Collab Project: Stimulation Investigations for Geothermal Modeling Analysis and Validation (SIGMA-V): Early Lessons Learned”

Abstract: Vast quantities of energy are present in subsurface hot rock. Conventional geothermal systems extract heated subsurface fluids for direct use or production of electricity. Where the needed heat exchanger characteristics of conventional geothermal systems are not present, supplying the working fluid and/or the permeability is required, yielding an Enhanced (or Engineered) Geothermal Systems (EGS). The EGS Collab Project is a three-year project that brings together researchers from eight national laboratories and six universities with the primary goal of validating simulation tools that can be used in the upcoming Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE) project that will establish a testbed for EGS development ideas. We will design and carry out a number of stimulation tests including both hydraulic fracturing and shear stimulation, and will carefully measure the resulting stimulation to compare with model results. We will use new and available tools to monitor and characterize our fractures. Our first test will occur at the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, SD (former Homestake gold mine) at a depth of 4850 ft. below ground surface.

Biography:   Timothy Kneafsey P.E., Ph.D. is a Geological Staff Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Over the past 25 years, he has worked on and led laboratory and field studies investigating thermal, hydrological, mechanical, and chemical processes affecting heat and mass transfer in fractured and porous rock relevant to geothermal energy production, CO2 sequestration, hydrocarbon production from gas and oil shales, gas production from methane hydrate-bearing sediments, and radioactive waste disposal. He recently led a multi-year laboratory investigation of fracture sustainability under enhanced geothermal system temperatures, pressures, and stresses, and is currently leading a multi-lab and university team investigating stimulation of crystalline rock.