Eine alte Zeche im Ruhrgebiet

a ruhrvalley SME-Project


Geomechanical integrity of heat stores in mines


GeoSmaGriR is short for Smart Solar Geothermal Energy Grid Ruhr. It ddescribes the prototyp of a smart and heat network, that stores seasonal excess heat in disused mines. The goal of the SME-project is to predict the geomechanical behavior of the subsurface.


Starting point

The central aspect of the foundation project “Smart Geothermal Energy Grid Ruhr”, or GeoSmaGriR, is the storage of seasonal excess heat from district heating networks in mining buildings of disused coal mines in the Ruhr region. The seasonal supply of heat in and extraction of heat from underground storage results in a cyclic thermal load on the reservoir rocks, which needs to be studied in order for the heat storage to be used safely.

Our Solution

The reliable geoscientific forecasting of long-term reservoir integrity and the prognosis of geomechanical behaviour of the subsurface during heat storage are indispensable for the safe use of the heat storage facility, and thus the topmost objective of the SME project. For this purpose, fully coupled thermo-hydro-mechanical numerical simulations on a large scale are calculated. The geothermal systems simulations are based on the finite element method and provide information on the heaving and sinking of the Earth’s surface that helps locate possible geomechanically critical spots in the subsurface, as well as the reactivation potential of existing disturbances.

Funding ID


Supported by Federal Ministry for Education and Research

Project Duration

2017 – 2019


Key Areas

  • Development of a concept for the integration of solar and geothermal energy into the heating network
  • Modeling of the mine heat storage
  • Numerical simulations
  • Implementation of software-technical aspects in the overall system
zwei generische Untergrundmodelle zur Vorhersage des geomechanischen Verhaltens vom Untergrund bei Wärmeeinspeicherung
generische Untergrundmodelle zur Vorhersage des geomechanischen Verhaltens vom Untergrund bei Wärmeeinspeicherung, ©geomecon GmbH


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