Update on the United Downs Deep Geothermal Power project
We began site preparation work in mid-March and were initially hampered by bad weather and wet ground conditions. The work involves the removal of waste, levelling the surface, creating concrete pads, constructing drilling cellars, providing power, water and waste infrastructure, installing fencing, gates and lighting, and building temporary site offices. We now hope to finish groundworks by the middle of June and have the site office and visitor facility ready by the end of June.
During June we will also install ‘conductor casings’ at the location of each deep well. These are 30” diameter steel pipes installed to a depth of 10m to protect any near-surface loose material from the drilling operation. They will be installed by a small water well drilling rig.
The drilling rig we will be using is currently being used to drill and test a geothermal well in Finland and unfortunately this project has fallen further behind schedule. As a result, the rig won’t be released for mobilisation to Cornwall until the middle of July. We therefore now expect drilling to begin in early August and finish in February 2019.
The first four stations of our microseismic monitoring system have been installed and are now collecting data. A further three to five stations will follow soon.
Our education programme continues to pick up. We have visited five secondary schools so far and have visits planned to about a dozen primary schools before the end of the school year. We are also in contact with schools about visits and sessions in the Autumn term. Our second educational film, aimed at secondary schools and above, is almost complete.
Once we have the site finished and the office ready for use, we will be organising drop-in sessions for local residents and businesses to visit and find out more about what we are doing.
The project website provides information about geothermal energy in general, and the UDDGP project in particular, and will be kept up to date with news on the programme and site activities.
UDDGP Project Manager