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3-D Modelling

In recent years, 3D modeling tools have become increasingly sophisticated and are now widely used in the energy and mineral resource industries to support a range of activities, from exploration to development. 3D models offer numerous benefits, including the ability to share and discuss data interpretation within a team, mitigate risks associated with geothermal projects, and communicate more effectively with non-technical audiences. While these models do not need to be highly detailed in the early stages of exploration (when sub-surface information is limited), they can be refined and expanded as more data becomes available through exploration or drilling activities. Overall, 3D modeling is an invaluable tool for understanding and evaluating any subsurface resource.

At Aetna Geothermal, we offer a range of 3D modeling services to support your geothermal and lithium brine projects, from early stage exploration and drilling to comprehensive models of developed and producing fields. Our capabilities include advanced workflows to help you gain a deeper understanding of your reservoir and reduce the risks associated with geothermal resource development. Below is a non-exhaustive list of the 3D modeling services we provide.

Some videos of 3D models we have built are available on our Videos page

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Initial Models for Early stage projects

Starting to create a 3D model from the beginning stages of exploration is crucial for the success of a project, as it serves as a snapshot of the current understanding of the resource and establishes a baseline for future planning. By continually updating the model as new data becomes available, you can ensure that your 3D model always reflects the most accurate and up-to-date understanding of the resource.

Initial data integration: 

We format/prepare, georeference all your relevant project data and integrate them properly into Leapfrog.


Data Visualization:

See all your surface data, point data, well data, geophysical grids or micro-seismicity data all in the same environment in visually appealing graphics.


Initial 3-D Models:

We start by building a model representing the main geological structures and lithological contacts in an initial geological model. We can also generate isosurfaces  and distribution models for data like temperature, chemistry or formation properties, and obtain volume information for generation capacity estimates.


Interpretation & planning:

We will build with your team an initial 3-D conceptual model of your geothermal resource using the data integrated and the models generated. The conceptual model can be used to efficiently plan exploration wells directly in 3-D.

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Comprehensive Models for Developed Fields

For geothermal fields already in the development stage or even producing electricity or providing heat, we offer more comprehensive modelling capabilities to integrate large volume of sub-surface data and build more complex models of the resource

Well data:

After integrating the well data, it is critical to QC them properly before starting to build the models. Grouping lithologies, correlating contacts with upscaled geophysical logs, merging datasets, studying the fracture stereonets or the production data. It is also possible to visualize time dependent data from tracer flow tests. 

Complex geological modelling:

Based on well data, the surface geological map, geophysical surveys and previous interpretations, we can build geological model with complex structures and numerous lithologies, whether it is in magmatic, metamorphic or sedimentary context.

Correlation & interpretation:

Creating the models is only the first step, we can now combine them and see how the correlate, find patterns between particular combination of elements and the best producing zones of your reservoir.

Directional well planning:

We can integrate your planned wells into the models or use the models to plan the best wells with your drilling engineers and geoscience team to increase the chances of success and find the optimal design for your well.

Flow simulation grid export:

We work with your reservoir engineers to make a seamless connection between the models we created and the flow simulator they use to forecast field production.

Surface facilities integration:

Integrate your surface facility design and steam pipe network in the models to visualize both below and above ground elements of your geothermal project.

Advanced Workflows and Calculations

Once all data has been integrated and comprehensive models have been created, it opens up numerous opportunities to further analyze the reservoir using advanced workflows and other tools. This can help to provide a more in-depth understanding of the resource and mitigate the risks associated with project development. 

3-D Play Fairway Analysis:

In a Play Fairway Analysis, several parameters potentially indicating the presence of a geothermal resource at depth are categorized, weighted and combined together. This provides spatial distribution of the geothermal resource favorability to limit exploration risk. We have adapted this into a 3-D workflow, combining all the data related to the characteristics of the reservoir available and some economical constraints to determine the best drilling targets for a geothermal well. 

Uncertainty Modelling:

Uncertainty around the interpretation of a fault or a lithological contact surface increases as we move further away from the data points used to build them. We have established an advanced workflow to quantify and visualize the uncertainty distribution for surfaces that constitute the geological model. 

Another uncertainty that can be modelled is related to the trajectory of a planned well. Downhole measuring tools are never 100% accurate and the rock characteristics can alter the well trajectory during drilling. We can represent the uncertainty around the well trajectory by defining an angle of error for the deviation from its original planned trajectory.

Personalized workflows:

More workflows are possible using calculations and classification tools on data to generate models of temperature or resistivity gradient, to generate density model of seismicity and more. Let us know what you would like to represent and we will build a custom workflow to satisfy your request.

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