Thermal Decay of Selected Organic Substances as Smart Tracers in Geothermal Reservoirs


Martin Nottebohm, Tobias Licha and Martin Sauter

Key Words:

thermosensitive tracer, Arrhenius parameter, ester hydrolysis


Stanford Geothermal Workshop







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The aim of the laboratory experiments presented here is to find a set of thermosensitive tracers to identify thermal characteristics in deep geothermal reservoirs during the long-term operation of a power plant. In the near future several short-term push-pull experiments are planned at different test-sites in northern Europe. As a first step we focus on tracers which fulfill the requirements of a short tracer test in a comparatively low-temperature regime (100-130C).

Based on the experiences in hydrolysis reaction kinetics the influences of structural characteristics on the reaction kinetics are studied on 42 phenol acetates in order to transfer these findings to esters based on naphthalene sulfonate structures as demonstrated geothermal tracers to use them as reaction products for thermosensitive tracers.

Moreover, the reaction kinetic of a 2-ethylbutylnaphthol sulfonic ester is investigated as a potential practical thermosensitive tracer.

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