Geothermal Lost Circulation and Cementing Techniques Panel Discussion

Date/Time: Wednesday, August 31, 2022 - 9:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Track: Technical Panel
Room: Naples 3-4
Log in to Add to My Schedule


This panel discussion will kick-off with a presentation from Bill Rickard, also the session's moderator, focusing on state-of-the-art options.  

The purpose of the one-hour panel discussion with one hour of audience questions is to determine the current state of the art and prepare panel discussions for a follow up meeting to produce an industry consensus on how to best deal with these issues that have been endemic in the geothermal drilling industry since its inception.

  • Loss circulation is a major problem encountered while drilling a geothermal well. Standardization of the treatment of partial to total loss of circulation using techniques other than setting loss circulation cement plugs would be a boon to the industry
  • Lost circulation cementing or the treatment of lost circulation using cement plugs which are set with different methods based on the losses and using different additives with cement
  • Casing cementing techniques – discussion of the different of casing cementing methods with the main purpose of getting cement back to surface
    • Running the casings as long string or as a tie back, pumping cement through the drill pipe and using stage collars for cement placement while cementing long casing strings.
    • The different of cement formulations like foamed cement to reduce the density of the cement
  • When cement does not return to or stay at surface is during the primary cementing job, a top out cement job is needed to fill the annulus with cement to surface, while ensuring water is not trapped in the annular space

The goal of the discussion will be to answer questions about the bullets above and determine which are most important in reducing drilling time and cost without sacrificing the quality of well completions. The object is to answer the question, what can we do in a collaborative effort to improve the drilling performance while reducing costs and how can we best do this within the structure of GR, our premier industry association.

A short report will be prepared and distributed to all parties that are interested. The moderator will draft the report for review by the panel members. I will attempt to include industry drilling department and service company representatives on the panel and limit the panel to a half dozen participants.


  • Mark Chastain – CalEnergy
  • Adam Miller – Calpine
  • John Tuttle – Sinclair
  • Hao Nguyen – Halliburton Cementing
  • Hamid Najafi – Resource Cementing
  • Matt Stiasny – Ormat