University of Oklahoma collaborates with other scientists to improve geothermal well drilling efficiencies

Published: Sunday, August 25, 2019 By: Jack Money Source: NewsOK

Thermally activated smart shape memory polymers could help plug drilling-related problems with geothermal wells.

Saeed Salehi, a professor of petroleum and geological engineering at the University of Oklahoma’s Mewbourne College of Earth and Energy, is leading a team of researchers at OU and two other universities investigating the polymers’ potential.

Specifically, the team members are working with shape memory polymers that make up something they have named smart lost circulation materials.

The polymers, Salehi said, react to geothermal temperatures to expand into rock fractures near the bore of a well that is being drilled to tap that energy.

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