Utah FORGE: Well 58-32 Stimulation Conference Paper and Data


The U.S. Department of Energy's (U.S. DOE) Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE) is a field laboratory that provides a unique opportunity to develop and test new technologies for characterizing, creating and sustaining Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) in a controlled environment.

In 2018, the U.S. DOE selected a site in south-central Utah for the FORGE laboratory. Numerous geoscientific studies have been conducted in the region since the 1970s in support of geothermal development at Roosevelt Hot Springs. A vertical scientific well, 58-32, was drilled and tested to a depth of 2290 m (7515 ft) GL in 2017 on the FORGE site to provide additional characterization of the reservoir rocks. The well encountered a conductive thermal regime and a bottom hole temperature of 199degC (390degF). More than 2000 natural fractures were identified, but measured permeabilities are low, less than 30 micro-darcies. Induced fractures indicate that the maximum horizontal stress trends NNE-SSW, consistent with geologic and well observations from the surrounding area. Approximately 45 m (147 ft) at the base of the well was left uncased. A maximum wellhead pressure of 27.6 MPa (4000 psig) at an injection rate of ~1431 L/min (~9 bpm) was measured during stimulation testing in September 2017. Conventional diagnostic evaluations of the data suggest that hydraulic fracturing and shearing occurred. Estimates of the stress gradient for delta_h_min range from of 16.7 to 17.6 kPa/m (0.74 to 0.78 psi/ft). A gradient of 25.6 kPa/m (1.13psi/ft) was calculated for delta_V.

In 2019, the 2017 open-hole stimulation in well 58-32 was repeated with injection rates up to 2385 L/min (15 bpm). Two additional stimulations were conducted in the cased portion of the well; one to stimulate critically stressed fractures and the second to test noncritically stressed fractures. Breakdown of the zone spanning critically-stressed fractures occurred at a surface pressure of
approximately 29.0 MPa (4200 psig). Although stimulation of the noncritically stressed fractures was interrupted by failure of the bridge plug beneath the perforated interval, micro-seismic data suggests stimulation of the fractures may have been initiated at a surface pressure of 45.5 MPa (6600 psig). These stimulation results support the conclusion the Mineral Mountains granitoid is an appropriate
host for EGS development.

Micro-seismicity was monitored during the stimulations using surface and downhole instrumentation. Five seismometers and a nodal array of 150 seismic sensors were deployed on the surface. A Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) cable and a string of 12 geophones were deployed in well 78-32, drilled to a depth of 998 m (3274 ft) GL. A broadband sensor and a high-temperature geophone were
deployed in well 68-32, drilled to a depth of 303 m (994 ft) GL. More than 420 micro-seismic events were detected by the geophone string. Other instruments detected fewer events.

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Additional Info

DOE Project Name: Utah FORGE
DOE Project Number: EE0007080
DOE Project Lead: Lauren Boyd
DOI: 10.15121/1542062
Last Updated: over a year ago
Data from April, 2019
Submitted Jun 25, 2019


Energy and Geoscience Institute at the University of Utah



Publicly accessible License 


Sharon Best
Geothermal Resource Group


geothermal, energy, Utah FORGE, open hole stimulation, Well 58-32 stimulation, Well 58-32, Utah geothermal, GRG, EGS, disccrete fracture flow, reservoir stimulation, stimulation, hydraulic fracturing, phase 2c, FORGE, pressure, flowback, rate, temperature, hydraulic, flow, Utah, open-hole, Milford, Roosevelt Hot Springs, pre-processed, upper perforation, lower perforation, microseismicity, DAS, distributed acoustic sensing, geophysics


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