EnergeÔ Vinzel the beginning of the project
EnergeÔ Vinzel is the first medium-depth geothermal project on the Côte d'Azur to harness the natural heat of the region's subsoil to supply district heating networks.
Based on a report assessing the geothermal potential of the canton of Vaud, four sites on the Côte de Vaud were identified as geologically favorable: Vinzel, Nyon, Aubonne and Etoy.
Having demonstrated the viability of the project, the EnergeÔ project partners - SEIC, SEFA, Romande Energie and the City of Nyon - launched a second study to pinpoint the exact location and depth of the faults for future exploratory drilling. A plot of land in the commune of Vinzel was selected by the preparatory studies for the first medium-depth drilling, and the EnergeÔ Vinzel project was born. The aim is to recover heat to supply district heating networks, in particular that of the Eikenøtt eco-neighborhood in Gland, already equipped to be supplied by a geothermal installation.
EnergeÔ Vinzel first results
Following successful drilling in the Dogger aquifer at a depth of 2,233 metres, productivity tests confirmed the presence of water. The flow rate, however, was not sufficient for exploitation.
Plan B of the project was then activated, aimed at exploiting the Malm aquifer, located further above ground. Over a period of 10 days, the well was completed using an S-shaped borehole to penetrate directly into the fault. The well has a vertical depth of 1,524 metres and a total length of 1,820 metres. The initial objectives were to achieve a flow rate of 50 liters per second (l/s) and a temperature of 50°.
The presence of geothermal water with an exceptional flow rate, 150 l/s, has been confirmed, but temperatures significantly lower than expected mean that these results need to be analyzed in order to reassess the potential for geothermal development on the Côte.
Geothermal energy: a solution for the future
The principle is to harness the natural heat of the subsoil by pumping aquifers at medium depth (-2200 m) in the first instance and at great depth (-5000 m) in the second. The output could be used to produce not only thermal energy, but also electrical power.
The concept is based on a proven model involving the extraction of hot water from the subsoil by means of two deep boreholes (production-reinjection). This operation does not involve soil stimulation (artificially fractured rock), which has the advantage of guaranteeing the stability of the land concerned.
Geothermal systems offer many advantages. They produce no combustion, no greenhouse gas emissions, and no hazardous substances are transported or stored on the surface. Their impact on the landscape is also minimal, since most of the visible equipment is located underground.
This energy production process is also particularly promising, since these hot water flows are found all over the planet, and in constantly renewed quantities.
The aim of EnergeÔ at Vinzel is to produce heat to supply district heating networks capable of heating the equivalent of around 1,500 households. ThermorésÔ is the name given to the district heating network planned to serve Gland's neighborhoods north of the SBB tracks, in particular the Eikenott eco-neighborhood.
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EnergeÔ Vinzel future projects
EnergeÔ SA, a company created by SEIC, Ville de Nyon, SEFA and Romande Energie, remains committed to developing the other projects already identified in the region, while carefully studying the conditions necessary for their realization.