Three-dimensional drilling simulation of geothermal drilling

Hidehiro Shiratani, Masami Nakagawa

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


We are interested in simulating the initial phase of the rock fracturing process of geothermal drilling. In order to simulate the fracture process, we use Particle Flow Code (PFC3D) and synthesize Colorado Red Granite (hereafter "granite"). The discrete nature of PFC allows us to visualize how micro-fractures and cuttings are developed as part of the validation assessment of simulation results. For this study, the granite is synthesized using the Bonded Particle Model (BPM) in PFC3D. Three tests are used to conduct a sensitivity analysis of the micro-parameters associated with the BPM: Triaxial Strength (Triax), Uniaxial Compressive Strength (UCS), and Brazilian Tensile Strength (BTS). A series of visualizations of rock cuttings at different stages will be provided to show the dynamic interaction between the drill bits and the cuttings. A preliminary hypothesis about how the work done by the bits is converted to kinetic and strain energy is discussed. The kinetic energy is associated with the movement of fragmented pieces, and the strain energy is associated with the compression behavior of the bits on the granite sample.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGeothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting 2012, GRC 2012 - Geothermal
Subtitle of host publicationReliable, Renewable, Global
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes
EventGeothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting 2012 - Geothermal: Reliable, Renewable, Global, GRC 2012 - Reno, NV, United States
Duration: Sept 30 2012Oct 3 2012

Publication series

NameTransactions - Geothermal Resources Council
Volume36 1
ISSN (Print)0193-5933


OtherGeothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting 2012 - Geothermal: Reliable, Renewable, Global, GRC 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityReno, NV

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Geophysics


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