Investigation of Stimulation-Response Relationships for Complex Fracture Systems in Enhanced Geothermal Reservoirs

Hydraulic fracturing is currently the primary method for stimulating low-permeability geothermal reservoirs and creating Enhanced (or Engineered) Geothermal Systems (EGS) with improved permeability and heat production efficiency. Complex natural fracture systems usually exist in the formations to be stimulated and it is therefore critical to understand the interactions between existing fractures and newly created fractures before optimal stimulation strategies can be developed. Our study aims to improve the understanding of EGS stimulation-response relationships by developing and applying computer-based models that can effectively reflect the key mechanisms governing interactions between complex existing fracture networks and newly created hydraulic fractures. In this paper, we first briefly describe the key modules of our methodology, namely a geomechanics solver, a discrete fracture flow solver, a rock joint response model, an adaptive remeshing module, and most importantly their effective coupling. After verifying the numerical model against classical closed-form solutions, we investigate responses of reservoirs with different preexisting natural fractures to a variety of stimulation strategies. The factors investigated include: the in situ stress states (orientation of the principal stresses and the degree of stress anisotropy), pumping pressure, and stimulation sequences of multiple wells.

- Originated 01/01/2011 by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

2 Resources

 NameSizeTypeResource Description
 GRC Paper.pdf1761487otherA paper published at the 2011 Geothermal Resources Council meeting detailing the investigation.
 GRC Presentation.pdf5935068otherPresentation slides associated with the paper as presented at the 2011 GRC meeting


geothermal enhanced geothermal system egs discrete fracture flow modeling reservoir stimulation stimulation hydraulic fracturing


•  FEB  • 7 2013

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory



  • Pengcheng Fu, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
  • Scott M. Johnson, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
  • Charles R. Carrigan, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory


Creative Commons Attribution 4.0

Cite this dataset:

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. (2013). Investigation of Stimulation-Response Relationships for Complex Fracture Systems in Enhanced Geothermal Reservoirs [data set]. Retrieved from

About this dataset

DOI 10.15121/1358113
status Publicly accessible
last updated 11 months ago

DOE Project

AID 19979 Stimulation of Complex Fracture Systems in Low Pressure Reservoirs for Development of Enhanced Geothermal Systems

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