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Proof of success of the new multi-stage geothermal stimulation concept patented in Switzerland | Think GeoEnergy | Instant News

Installation of the seismometer chain at ETH Zurich’s Bedretto Laboratory (source / copyright: Geo-Energie Suisse)

Geo-Energie Suisse succeeded in creating a permeable geothermal reservoir in the Gotthard mass granite at Zurich ETH’s Bedretto Laboratory, a breakthrough and technical proof for the company’s patented multi-stage geothermal stimulation concept.

In a breakthrough for deep geothermal, and announced today, Switzerland-based Geo-Energie Suisse (GES) announced that it has succeeded in obtaining technical proof of the company’s patented multi-stage stimulation concept. A successful demonstration took place at the Bedretto Underground laboratory for Geosciences and Geoenergy of the ETH Zurich in Canton Ticino at the end of 2020. Geo-Energie Suisse hopes the achievements in the Gotthard massif will give new impetus to the pilot project in Haute-Sorne (JU) and to production of electricity and heat from geothermal energy throughout Switzerland.

The potential of geothermal energy as a renewable and climate neutral energy source does not need to be questioned. The natural heat in the earth’s crust does not produce CO2 emissions and provides constant thermal energy that can be used for electricity production or directly as a heat source. In addition, geothermal power generation has a negligible impact on the landscape, as it takes up very little land area. At present, however, there is one major challenge that must be overcome if geothermal is to be used economically as a renewable power source on a large scale: that of reliable and location independent development outside of geothermal hotspots, such as in Iceland, Indonesia or New Zealand.

With support from the Werner Siemens Foundation, ETH Zurich has built a new research infrastructure to investigate these questions. At the «Bedretto Underground Laboratory for Geoenergy», ETH Zurich studies in close collaboration with national and international partners the techniques and procedures for safe, efficient and sustainable use of geothermal. GES demonstrates as an external partner at the Bedretto Laboratory within the framework of DESTRESS, ZoDrEx and IASS projecting how heat exchangers can be carefully made underground.

Switzerland’s first evidence of a multi-stage stimulation concept patented by GES.

In Basel, in 2006, efforts were made to create a geothermal reservoir in one step with a vertical open borehole. However, hydraulic stimulation triggers an earthquake which is unacceptable. In response to the technical challenges of developing a safe reservoir, Geo-Energie Suisse AG developed a multi-stage stimulation concept and patented it for Switzerland in 2012. The concept provides for the formation of a permeable reservoir in a crystalline basement at a depth of 4. to 5 kilometers required for electricity production. through targeted water injection. To minimize the associated seismic risk, hydraulic stimulation is carried out in sections and in small, staggered steps. A reservoir section sequence is made along a horizontal borehole. This is connected to the second horizontally deviated borehole. The result is a large underground heat exchanger that can be used to generate electricity and extract heat in geothermal power plants. Geo-Energie Suisse has now been able to prove for the first time that this multi-stage stimulation concept works in Switzerland, at the Bedretto ETH Zurich Laboratory.

A milestone in the use of deep geothermal energy in Switzerland

“We managed to increase the permeability by a factor of 10 to 100 in compact granite from the Gotthard mass with the aid of targeted stimulation, and in measuring and controlling the microseismicity required for the development of the gaps,” explains Dr Peter Meier, CEO of Geo-Energie Suisse AG, and added : «I believe that this breakthrough is a significant milestone on the way to Switzerland’s first geothermal power plant. On the one hand, this is because the permeability achieved in one of the two boreholes corresponds to the transmissivity required for economic applications. On the other hand, and this is central, the microseismicity associated with stimulation yields a maximum magnitude of -1.8 Mw on the Richter scale which is about 1 million times smaller than in Basel. »GES achieved this success within the framework of demonstration and innovation projects with the participation of national and international partners (see text box). The next step is a scientific evaluation by ETH Zurich, EPFL and the University of Neuchâtel. The evaluation will form the basis for a future, detailed stimulation program of the Geo-Energie Suisse pilot project at the site in Haute-Sorne in the canton of Jura. Another interim objective of the GES that was successfully achieved was the qualification and validation of any newly developed technical components relevant for safety or more economically for the construction of deep geothermal reservoirs. Further qualification and validation work is planned for 2021, 2022 and 2023.

International cooperation is the key to reliability and further development of innovation

As an industrial partner, GES will also validate findings obtained at the Bedretto Laboratory at the US FORGE Utah (Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy) test site in the high temperature range. The focus lies in using seismic sensors to control induced microseismicity and direct development – a key element for safe stimulation underground. This is another step to increase the chances of success and safety of Switzerland’s first deep geothermal pilot project at the Haute-Sorne in the canton of Jura, and to promote the deep use of geothermal energy in Switzerland.

The achievements at Bedretto brought a new impetus to the pilot project in Haute-Sorne

At the end of June 2020, the Swiss Federal Energy Office increased exploration grants for deep geothermal projects in the Haute-Sorne by one-third (see SFOE media releases). With this assistance, the Confederation is supporting additional steps for the Haute Sorne project which will further reduce the risk of a devastating earthquake on the recommendation of the Swiss Seismological Service (SED) at ETH Zurich. Suitable instruments and methods have been successfully tested and their effectiveness demonstrated in the framework of a demonstration project at the Bedretto Laboratory. This progress can be decisive for a pilot project in the Haute-Sorne. “We hope that the breakthrough at Bedretto will strengthen the confidence of the Jura Government and its supervisory authorities in the concept of safety for the Haute-Sorne pilot project and that we will be able to start preparations for exploration well before the end of 2021,” said Peter Meier.

Geo-Energie Suisse remains committed to a step-by-step approach to the pilot project in Haute-Sorne and is confident that the experience gained so far at the Bedretto Laboratory, future findings in Utah and additional support from the SFOE will be provided. projects in the Haute-Sorne at the forefront of safety. With the successful implementation of the pilot project at the Bedretto Laboratory, the hope is that the future of CO production is renewable2-The free and clean electricity from the underground will start in the Jura canton has been given a new boost. According to Peter Meier, “these innovations and outcomes will support the energy and climate policies of Switzerland and the entire growing geothermal industry”.

Overview of important results

  • At the Bedretto ETH Zurich Laboratory Geo-Energie Suisse succeeded in creating a permeable geothermal reservoir in the Gotthard mass granite from two boreholes, 350 and 400 meters long, respectively. For this purpose, 10 isolated borehole sections are hydraulically stimulated in successive steps.
  • Stimulation-induced microroseism, with magnitudes (Mw) ranging between -3.3 and -1.8 Mw, is about 1 million times smaller than the earthquake that led to the abandonment of the Basel geothermal project in 2006. microseismicity spatial distribution / temporal evolution of microseismicity (2 videos)
  • Innovative sensors, measurement and control techniques are tested for the first time and allow observation and control of hydraulic stimulation. These techniques increase safety when creating geothermal reservoirs in crystalline rock. In addition, the seismicity forecasting method developed by ETH Zurich has also been successfully applied in a pilot project. Numbers
  • A maximum of 100 cubic meters of water injected per stimulation interval according to a previously prepared risk study. In this way, the radial range of the stimulated fracture system can be limited to keep the seismic low. Despite the low injection volume (about 120 times smaller than in Basel), the permeability of the stimulated interval can be increased by about one to two times on average (a factor of 10 to 100).
  • The increased permeability of one of the two boreholes (transmissivity> 1e-4 m2 / s) will be high enough for economic applications in deep geothermal projects. Video.
  • The well stimulation area at the Bedretto Laboratory is located at a depth of 1400 meters below the surface. This corresponds to less than one-third of the target reservoir depth at Haute-Sorne (4000 – 5000 meters). The minimum rock pressure at the Bedretto Laboratory is about a quarter of the stress measured at Basel at a depth of 5,000 meters. The natural fracture permeability at Bedretto (before stimulation) is within the range of permeability of the crystalline basement of northeastern Switzerland as measured in the Nagra deep borehole within the framework of the 1980s crystal program.
  • The borehole diameter (22 cm) corresponds to the pilot project planned by Geo-Energie Suisse in Haute-Sorne, and approximately one-third of the length of the Haute-Sorne. Experience at the Bedretto Laboratory shows that highly deviated or horizontal boreholes in granite are also technically and economically feasible.
  • In March / April 2021, the reservoir will be expanded with a larger injection volume.
  • The achievement of this pilot project is the result of national and international innovation cooperation and serves the entire Swiss geothermal industry to increase the safety and probability of future project success.

Project partnerships:

  • DESTRUCTION Demonstration of gentle stimulation treatment of a geothermal reservoirwww.destress-h2020.eu/en/demonstration-sites/bedretto , funded by the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SBFI) under contract number 15.0316-1, 691728.
  • ZoDrEx Zonal Isolation, Drilling & Exploitation – www.geothermica.eu/projects/zodrex , financed by the Swiss Federal Energy Office (SFOE).
  • IASS Innovative Acquisition Systems and Software for Deep Geothermal Evaluation and Monitoring – in collaboration with Utah FORGE www.utahforge.com, financed by the Swiss Federal Energy Office (SFOE).

Source: release via email

Image Notes: Installing a seismometer chain in borehole ST1 to monitor stimulation in borehole ST2, at the Bedretto ETH Zurich Laboratory. The work was carried out under the direction of Geo-Energie Suisse (source / copyright: Geo-Energie Suisse)


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AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine will receive Swiss approval by this month: Report | Instant News

Swiss authorities were able to give approval for the COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca-Oxford earlier this month, the NZZ newspaper reported on January 16, citing two unnamed sources with knowledge of the matter. As per the report, Swissmedic’s watchdog is planning a meeting at the end of this month to sign a deal on striking in the European country. Swiss regulators have approved the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.

The newspaper quoted a Swissmedic spokesperson as saying that if everything went “in an exemplary manner” and the authorities received the necessary data immediately, the next approval decision could arrive “very quickly”. However, the person did not provide an exact date. Meanwhile, Switzerland has ordered at least a total of 15 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine after assigning at least $ 449 million to injections.

Intense global demand for vaccine doses amid the COVID-19 pandemic and limited production further limits the circulation of doses. But the Swiss government has reportedly said that 8.6 million of its citizens will be immunized for free by mid-2021.

Read – Nonagenarian Emeritus Professor Gets COVID-19 Vaccine in Jaipur

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India vaccinated 1,65,714 people

Meanwhile, when India started its vaccination program on January 16, the Ministry of Health said in a statement that at least 1,65,714 people received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and there have been no reports of post-vaccination hospitalizations to date. The first person in India to receive the injection was sanitation worker Manish Kumar after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a vaccination program. Kumar received his injection at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) which is one of 3,006 vaccination centers across the country.

In his launch, PM Modi said, “Usually it takes years to make a vaccine but in a short period of time, not one, but two ‘Made in India’ vaccines are ready. Meanwhile, work on other vaccines is ready. developing rapidly. This is a clear example of India’s talents and abilities. India’s vaccination program is based on the very important principle that those who need vaccines will be vaccinated first. Our doctors, nurses, medical & paramedical staff, hospital sanitation workers – both private and hospital are entitled to vaccinations. This will be done on a priority basis. “

Read – MP Vaccine Drive: My Turn Will Come In The Third Phase, CM Said

Read – Amit Shah Welcomes the Launch of COVID Vaccine; Former Chairman of the BJP in Karnataka to Discuss Cabinet Rejig


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The court stopped FIFA from investigating Infantino’s case | Instant News

FILE PHOTOS: Soccer Football – Globe Soccer Awards – Armani hotel, Burj Khalifa, Dubai, United Arab Emirates – December 27, 2020 FIFA President Gianni Infantino at Globe Soccer Awards REUTERS / Christopher Pike

ZURICH (Reuters) – Global football governing body FIFA failed to gain access to the case files compiled by the special prosecutor appointed last year to tackle investigations into president Gianni Infantino and his relationship with the former Swiss attorney general.

Special prosecutor Stefan Keller in July opened criminal proceedings over an undocumented meeting convened by Infantino and former chief prosecutor Michael Lauber, while Lauber’s office investigated allegations of corruption in world football.

Infantino and Lauber, who have since stepped down, denied wrongdoing. FIFA’s ethics committee acquitted Infantino in August of any code violations.

In a ruling released on Tuesday, the Federal Criminal Court rejected FIFA’s request for access to the files under investigation because a third party was directly involved in the proceedings.

FIFA, which complained that opening a criminal case against its president had damaged his reputation, argued that Keller was not authorized to initiate the process and appealed against his decision to reject FIFA’s offer to view the case files.

In a statement, FIFA said Keller had given the “misleading impression that something illegal or undesirable may have happened when the FIFA President met with the former Swiss Attorney General. Such suggestions or implications are completely rejected. “

It said neither FIFA nor Infantino had been informed of the alleged wrongdoing and the FIFA president was not given the opportunity to respond.

“FIFA and the FIFA President, of course, will continue to cooperate in this investigation, assuming they have been given the opportunity to do so,” he added.

Infantino was selected in 2016 to clean up FIFA after being implicated in a corruption scandal.

Reporting by Michael Shields; Edited by Ken Ferris


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European stocks rebound as oil and travel surge | Instant News

FILE PHOTO: The DAX chart of the German stock price index is presented on the stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, January 11, 2021. REUTERS / Staff (Reuters) – European stocks stabilized on Tuesday after trading fell in the latest session, as investors looked to the pan-regional STOXX 600 index rose 0.4% at 8:11 a.m. GMT, with the oil and gas and travel and leisure sectors climbing by more than 1% each to lead the Investors posted profits on Monday after the rally last week after a sweep of Democrats in the US Senate election that raised expectations of a larger US fiscal stimulus. BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Total advanced as crude prices rebounded on expectations of a drop in US crude. oil storage. [O/R]Danish shipping company Maersk rose 2.8% after brokerage firm Berenberg upgraded its stock to ‘buy’, saying earnings momentum driven by freight prices could cause the stock to rise. , while Renault SA rose 1.5% after the French automaker said it started 2021 with a higher level of orders than in 2019. Edited by Subhranshu Sahu.

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Australian authorities say we need to assume the UK variant of COVID-19 will become the dominant strain. This is where the virus has spread so far | Instant News

It’s been about five weeks since the UK’s Minister of Health announced a new strain of coronavirus.

Since then, the UK’s COVID-19 variant has spread to at least 45 countries and prompted new lockdowns and restrictions across Australia.

Like the nationwide lockdown in March last year, this is designed to provide breathing room for authorities trying to contain the spread.

This is the extent to which the variants have spread, and how the Australian authorities are dealing with the problem.

Where has the British coronavirus variant spread so far?

So far, 45 countries have detected a British variant of the coronavirus, according to cov-lineages.org, which, among other things, tracks the global spread of the new COVID-19 strain.

Thirteen countries have recorded community transmission of the COVID-19 variant, according to the study can be up to 70 percent more transmissible than the previous strain.

Cases have been recorded in European countries including Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Switzerland, Portugal and the Netherlands.

Outside Europe, local transmissions have been recorded in the United States, Canada, Israel and in the Philippines.

The first case detected in the United States occurred on December 29, in a man with no travel history.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control, there are 63 recorded cases nationwide.

The states with the most variance cases include California with 33 recorded cases, Florida with 22 cases, and Colorado, where the strain was first detected, has three recorded cases.

These are not the total variant cases circulating in the US, only those found in the analysis of positive samples. It happened as the US recently hit a record 300,000 new COVID-19 cases recorded in a day.

‘We have to assume that this strain will become the dominant strain’

Increased transmission of this new strain is thought to increase the number of cases in the UK.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, “This tension is likely to occur [the] the more dominant viral strain globally “.

NSW Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian said the same thing, although he didn’t think the strain should be considered a “British strain”.

“We have to assume that this strain will become the dominant strain and it is important to continue to reassess our arrangement, remain vigilant and for the near future keep our masks in that indoor setting,” he said.

“I also want to emphasize that we should not link this variant with one country because the so-called British strain now exists in 30 countries.”


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