Feasibility of Deep Direct-Use for District-Scale Applications in a Low-Temperature Sedimentary Basin

Andrew J Stumpf, Scott M Frailey, Roland T Okwen, Yongqi Lu, Franklin H Holcomb, James M Tinjum, Y.F. Lin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


A feasibility study of using deep direct-use (DDU) geothermal energy to heat agricultural research facilities (ARFs) wasconducted at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (U of IL) and its similar application to military facilities in the Illinois Basin(ILB). The geothermal energy system (GES) investigated utilizes low-temperature (30–90°C; 90–190°F)geothermal fluid(i.e., brine)from an extraction well that is part of a deep, two-well (doublet) system that extends tothe bottomof the ILB.The geothermal reservoirmodeled, the Mt. Simon Sandstone (MSS),is about 1,280 m (4,200 feet) deep and 457 m thick (1,500 feet) beneath the Uof IL. The DDU GESsurface infrastructure includes heat exchangers connected in-parallel to pipelines carrying the geothermal fluid and fresh cold and hot water.Analysisof the GES indicatedthat the MSScanprovide abaseload of 2 MMBtu/hrto heattheARFsby extracting954 m³/d (6,000 barrels/day [bbl/d])of geothermal fluidthat has a temperature of 44–46°C (111–115°F).In addition to analyzingthe levelized cost of heat(LCOH)and lifecycle costs,theenvironmental effectsof the DDU GESwereevaluated, includingreduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and water consumption. Multiple system designs wereevaluatedand then rankedbased on theirmaximum heatingperformance, energy efficiency, and cost recovery. This study addressedthemajor issuesassociated withDDU implementationin the ILB and met the following objectives: (1) reduce geologicuncertainty, (2) minimize drillingrisk, (3) optimizesystem performance and flexibility with reliable fluid delivery, and (4) support task expertise throughestablished partnerships
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings, 45thWorkshop on Geothermal Reservoir Engineering
StatePublished - 2020


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