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Empowering geothermal energy

 

Fervo Energy commercialize technology to develop, own and operate geothermal assets as the dispatchable foundation to a 100% clean energy future. Fervo’s technology incorporates proven, cost-effective technologies such as horizontal drilling and advanced fiber optic sensing, to lower the cost and increase the productivity of geothermal development.


FELLOWS

Jack Norbeck and Tim Latimer

Jack Norbeck and Tim Latimer

Tim Latimer began his career as a drilling engineer with BHP Billiton, working in the Permian and Eagle Ford basins. With a growing appreciation of the urgency and importance of climate change, he left the oil and gas industry 2015 to pursue an M.B.A. and an M.S. in environment and resources from Stanford University and learn how to best contribute to the clean energy transition. Latimer has also worked as a consultant for the Boston Consulting Group and for startups Biota Technology and McClure Geomechanics. In addition to being an Activate Fellow at Cyclotron Road, he is a fellow with the Clean Energy Leadership Institute, and was recognized on the Forbes 30 Under 30 Energy list. Latimer holds a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Tulsa and is a proud native of Texas.

Jack Norbeck is a geothermal reservoir engineer with a background in geomechanics and high performance computing. Prior to co-founding Fervo, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the USGS Earthquake Science Center. His experience with the geothermal industry includes working as a reservoir engineer at The Geysers geothermal field, designing well tests at the Raft River geothermal project at Idaho National Laboratory, and collaborating as a visiting scholar with the Geothermal Institute at University of Auckland. Norbeck holds a Ph.D. in energy resources engineering from Stanford University, a M.S. in civil engineering from Colorado School of Mines, and a B.S. in civil engineering from University of Colorado at Boulder

Learn more about what led them to Cyclotron Road in this Backstories episode.

technology

Critical Need
Geothermal energy is an important but currently limited clean energy resource. The biggest barrier to large scale geothermal deployment is exploration risk and insufficient well productivity. Fervo Energy has a novel approach to geothermal drilling that increases well productivity by at least 4X. Fervo’s design incorporates horizontal drilling to dramatically increase reservoir contact of geothermal wells. Additionally, Fervo uses advanced distributed fiber optic sensing to monitor and optimize flow rates to further increase well performance. The Fervo approach lowers the cost of development and opens up a resource for geothermal energy of over 100 GW, up to 20 percent of U.S. electricity supply.

Technology Vision
Fervo Energy has developed advancements in horizontal drilling and real-time flow control using distributed fiber optic sensing. The application of these techniques will increase the potential for economic geothermal power by orders of magnitude. The most important factor in geothermal cost is the amount of useful flowrate per well, and by drilling horizontally and measuring flow potential in real time with high resolution, Fervo’s technology increases flow per well by a factor of four, greatly lowering the cost to development. Fervo has validated its design with advanced physics-based simulation software and is in the process of developing field pilots at multiple locations in the United States.

The inclusion of geothermal—a dispatchable, zero-GHG resource—adds a valuable resource to the clean energy mix. By providing clean power 24/7, 365 days a year, geothermal serves as a compliment to other clean energy resources to decarbonize the most challenging parts of the electricity sector. If successful, Fervo’s technology will enable regions with high quality geothermal resources, like the western U.S., Southeast Asia, the East African Rift, or Central and South America, to achieve high levels of renewable energy penetration at a low cost.

Potential for Impact
Successful commercialization of Fervo's technology would unlock a new class of geothermal resource capable of supporting up to 100 GW of electric power development by 2050.

Fervo Energy is Looking for...

  • Team members - scientist, engineers

Links
Fervo Energy

Contact
tim [at] fervoenergy [dot] com

Press
Bill Gates has added a geothermal startup to his clean energy fund’s first bets

Recognition
TomKat Center innovation grant

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