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BFE Report – Study on the use of hydrothermal resources in Europe

When Swiss decision-makers, in the need of evaluating the potential of geothermal installations in Switzerland, required a comprehensive overview of the experience surrounding countries had gained from comparable approaches, they tasked ÅF’s experts with compiling a detailed study.

Description of Project:

The resulting report, published on the "EnergieSchweiz" web page of the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE), details the experience gained from geothermal heat exploitation in

  • the Parisienne Basin in the 70’s and 80s
  • the north German Basin in the 80’s and 90’s and
  • the Bavarian molasses basin in the 2000’s,

where installations with depths between 2000 and 5400 m produce water at temperatures between 65 and 143°C and rates of several hundred m3/h. In all studied cases, the primary focus was on the use of thermal energy for heating (and occasionally cooling) purposes, not on the production of electricity.

The report presents a comparative overview of the importance of a large number of geological, geographical, thermophysical, and hydraulic properties of potential locations, as well as a compilation of lessons learnt and a consideration of how the experience from the surrounding countries could translate to Swiss applications. It is bound to be an important foundation for future development of geothermal energy usage in Switzerland.

ÅF's services:

  • Geothermal and hydrogeological expertise
  • Scientific review and data compilation
  • District heating and cooling expertise
  • Consulting and support for agencies and decision-makers

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