Update on the IDDP

Earlier this year Deep Vision decided to move operations for the first IDDP deep drillhole to Krafla. Bid documents for the supply of casings and valves for the proposed well are just about being announced by Landsvirkjun, and well design is being finalized. We anticipate that the drilling will take place no later than early 2008. See IDDP_2006_update


SAGA Report No. 5

A decision is expected within few weeks where to drill the first IDDP well, be it at Krafla, Reykjanes or Hellisheidi. The 5th SAGA meeting was held in Reykjavik at the end of April 2006 to evaluate drilling options after well RN-17 at Reykjanes was lost earlier this year. The proceedings of the SAGA meeting and the ensuing meetings with DeepVision and representatives of ICDP and NSF are described in SAGA Report No. 5. At a DeepVision meeting yesterday it became clear that the evaluation process needs to continue for a few more weeks before a decision on the drillsite will be made.



IDDP is in the process of selecting a new well for deepening as RN-17 is no longer a well of opportunity. Once a new well has been selected, drill cutting samples from that well will be made available to IDDP participants, immediately. Below is a list of samples that were distributed to IDDP participants last year:

Delphine Bosch and Benoit Ildefonse (University of Montpellier) Godard, Boudier, Nicolas, Pezard, Einaudi, Laverne, Mainprice, Gibert
Study of the high temperature alteration processes in the IDDP hole: Geochemical and Petrological constraints and Petrophysical characterization of crustal rocks, with an emphasis on the role of fracturing and alteration on electrical and thermal properties
Core sample from RN19: 2245.28 to 2245.45 m, natural split.
Drill cuttings from RN17: 1550, 1600, 1650, 1700, 2100, 2150, 2200, 2250, 2700, 2800, 2850 m.

Philippe Pezard (University of Montpellier) Celerier, Gautier, Einaudi, Ildefonse, Mainprice, Gibert, Laverne
Porosity, fracturing, alteration, and stress in and near the IDDP hole; an assessment from the combined analysis of downhole geophysical data and shallow regional earthquakes

Electrical resistivity profiles
Natural gamma data
Electrical resistivity and temperature log
Caliper log

Carsten Vahle (Heidelberg) Agnes Kontny
Hot-Spot Related Crustal Magnetization and Magnetic Petrology from Scientific Drillings

Core sample from RN19: 2246.14 to 2246.22 m, natural split

G. Ómar Fridleifsson (Iceland GeoSurvey)
Geology and Hydrothermal alteration in the IDDP drillhole at Reykjanes
Core sample from RN19: 2246.22 to 2246.31 m, split.

Note: all data and materials collected so far from RN17 and RN19 are stored at the Iceland GeoSurvey offices/laboratories in Iceland. Report already available (ISOR-2005/007, 198 p.)

Giovanni Gianelli (NRC, Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources, Pisa) Tonarini, Ottolini
Evaluation of the larger scale distribution of major, minor, and trace elements compositions accompanying the alteration of oceanic crust
Core sample from RN19: 2246.02 to 2246.14 m, natural split.
Drill cuttings from RN17: 400, 650, 750, 1100, 1450, 1550, 1700, 2150, 2800, 3000.

Julia Frolova (Moscow State University) Ladygin, Sokolov, Genshaft, Saltykovsly, Filimonov, Rychagov
Complex Petrological-Petrophysical Analyses of Rocks in Deep High-Temperature Geothermal Systems
Core sample from RN19: 2246.31 to 2246.42 m, unsplit.

Dennis Bird (Stanford; USA central science team group), Schiffman, Reed, Elders, Zierenberg
Drill cuttings from RN17 depths: 350, 400, 500, 550, 600, 650, 700, 750, 750, 800, 850, 950, 1000, 1050, 1100, 1150, 1200, 1300, 1350, 1400, 1450, 1500, 1550, 1600, 1650, 1700, 1750, 1800, 1850, 1900, 1950, 2000, 2050, 2100, 2150, 2200, 2250, 2300, 2350, 2400, 2500, 2550, 2600, 2650, 2700, 2800, 2850, 2900, 2950, 3000, 3050 m.

Core from RN19: 2246.6 to 2246.7, natural split.

Drillhole RN-17 at Reykjanes has been the prime candidate for deep drilling by the IDDP. However a flow test of this well in November 2005 was cut short when it became plugged by rock debris and last week attempts to clean and condition this drillhole failed. A caliper log revealed that there has been extensive caving. We therefore reluctantly conclude that drillhole RN-17 is no longer a candidate for deep drilling by the IDDP. We must therefore now consider alternative “wells of opportunity” at the Reykjanes geothermal field for deepening.

In December 2003, Hitaveita Sudurnesja Ltd (HS) offered one in a series of several production wells they planned to drill as a candidate for deepening by the IDDP, once its production characteristics had been evaluated. HS intended to release this drillhole, or another well of opportunity, to IDDP for deepening, provided enough steam for a 100 MW power plant had been secured before mid-year 2006.

In February 2005 RN-17 was completed to 3.1 km depth, the deepest drillhole in the field, and was then the prime candidate for deepening by the IDDP. Accordingly all daily reports and well reports were written in English and, following the ICDP protocol, made available at the ICDP website, as well as on the ISOR website. ICDP agreed to finance a spot core in this well. However, by the time funding became available RN_17 had already been completed and so the core was collected from the bottom of well RN-19, another “well of opportunity” that was being drilled at that time. In 2005 the IDDP distributed samples of drill cuttings from RN-17 and core from RN-19, for study by the international science team. At the moment several groups in Italy, France, Germany, USA, Russia and Iceland are studying this material as well as drill cutting samples from other wells at the Reykjanes geothermal field. Other teams were waiting for fluid samples from the flow test of RN-17 of last November that ended abruptly due to collapse of the formation, as mentioned above.

Losing RN-17 as a candidate for IDDP deepening is most unfortunate for both Hitaveita Sudurnesja Ltd and the IDDP, while the severe financial loss has all been borne by the HS. However the IDDP will continue as other wells of opportunity are available. At the moment HS and IDDP are discussing and evaluating which of the other wells at Reykjanes can be considered for deepening. Wells RN-16, RN-19 and RN-20 are being evaluated in this respect. IDDP Deep Vision and the PI’s will make a new announcement on this matter once it is finalized.



December 3rd 2005

AGU poster available on .pdf format (423 kb)

Reykjavik Energy, at its board meeting yesterday, formally approved the IDDP funding request of up to 300 Mkr for deepening an IDDP well at Reykjanes, first to 4 km in 2006 and the 5 km in 2007, and to participate in the flow tests in the following two year as requested. At the current exchange rate (61.55 kr/USD) this equals about 4.9 M USD. Now all parties concerned have approved IDDP’s request for similar funds, i.e. Hitaveita Sudurnesja, Landsvirkjun, the Government of Iceland, Orkuveita Reykjavíkur, and ICDP together with the US NSF.

This is a major milestone as funding for the drilling of first IDDP drillhole is now secured. We still expect to seek additional international funding to participate in the elaborate flow test planned for 2008-2009, roughly yet another 4.9 M USD according to our current plan for the flow test as outlined in the feasibility report, which is a technical challenge. That plan however is likely to be re-evaluated as we move along.

The immediate next step is to continue preparing for the drilling to 4 km next year. We need to address the IDDP candidate wells available at Reykjanes and the science program, and to continue selecting and to order appropriate casing material and wellheads. Now we can really get down to addressing the scientific program, secure in the knowledge that it will go forward, and in a reasonable time frame. No matter what is found, the results are going to be significant and exciting for all of us who are interested in the roots of hydrothermal systems.

For those interested in samples from the Reykjanes wells we refer to the August 12th news.


IDDP Funding

The Government of Iceland decided at its meeting on 30th August 2005, to participate significantly in funding the IDDP drilling and flow testing in 2006-2009.
This is a major step forward in our search for domestic and international funds for IDDP.

An updated review on the IDDP project can be found here (á íslensku) and here (in english).

The RN-17 well report is now available under Daily Report on the ICDP website. The report is 198 p. long including appendices. The well RN-17 was drilled and funded by Hitaveita Sudurnesja (HS) as one of many production wells at Reykjanes. RN-17 is a prime candidate as a well of opportunity for deepening in 2006 and 2007 by IDDP. The HS energy company will need to release the candidate well officially to IDDP prior to a final decision on deepening. At present IDDP expects to receive funds for deeping from multiple sources. The funding issue should be clarified soon.

The well RN-17 was completed as a 12 ¼ inch barefoot drillhole, 3082 m deep, cased by cemented 13 3/8 inch steel casing to almost 900 m depth. Upon IDDP deepening, a 9 5/8 inch casing will first be inserted and cemented before deepening with a 8 ½ inch drill bit to 4 km depth. Frequent spot coring is planned in that depth interval, funded by ICDP and the US National Science Foundation. Later in 2007 it is proposed to continuously core this well down to 5 km depth.

Scientists involved in IDDP research can now make a formal request for samples of the drill cuttings available from well RN-17. Such sample requests should be made before November 1st, 2005. Conventional drill cutting samples (125 ml containers) were collected at 2 m intervals. Additional large cutting samples (1000 ml containers) were collected at 50 m intervals. A 2.7 m long dolerite spot core from a neighbouring well, RN-19, was also obtained. See the RN-17 well report for details.


WGC-2005 Poster

poster_wgc_04_05_gof-last.pdf (2.88 mb )


Drilling of RN-17

Daily reports from the drilling of RN-17.