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Polaris completes drilling program at San Jacinto-Tizate, Nicaragua

Plant in San Jacinto Tizate, Nicaragua (source: PowerEngineers)
Alexander Richter Alexander Richter 10 Aug 2016

Polaris Infrastructure reports on the completion of its drilling program for 2015/ 2016 and the great success of its injection well work-over program, hopeing to see tangible operational results from its San Jacinto-Tizate geothermal power plant in Nicaragua.

In its report on financial results for the second quarter of 2016, Polaris Infrastructure also provided details about the status of its San Jacinto project in Nicaragua.

The company reports the substantial completion of the 2015/2016 drilling program. After commencing in October 2015, the drilling execution portion of the 2015/2016 San Jacinto project drilling program was substantially completed on July 21, 2016. While a more detailed discussion of the 2015/2016 drilling program can be found in our MD&A, highlights are as follows:

  • Drilling of the third and final new production well at the San Jacinto project, SJ 9-4, was completed on July 21, 2016, approximately one week ahead of schedule. As contemplated in the original drilling plan, a total loss of drilling fluids was experienced, indicating a zone of high permeability and the well was completed at a depth of 1,525 metres measured depth. While it is too early to estimate incremental MW contribution, the well has reached over 260°C and was able to successfully flow on its own in a discharge test performed last week, creating optimism with respect to the extent of incremental power generation. We expect to have SJ 9-4 connected to the San Jacinto power plant in late October 2016.
  • The first new production well, SJ 6-3, is in the final stages of thermal recovery. While the well has not yet reached its expected temperature, it is currently connected to the plant and contributing additional steam to improve overall plant generation.
  • Drilling of the second new well, SJ 14-1, was completed in late April 2016, and we anticipate bringing it into service as an injection well for cold condensate, which is a critical component of our overall geothermal fluid management strategy.

It also reports the success of its injection well workover program: Before drilling SJ 9-4, we completed the mechanical workover and acidization of four existing injection wells, with the primary objective being to increase overall reinjection capacity. The injection well workover program was highly successful, with highlights as follows:

  • Achieved approximately 31% increase in injection capacity;
  • Workovers were completed in 57 days, which is 13 days ahead of schedule and approximately $700,000 under budget;
  • Sufficient additional injection capacity was created such that we can accept incremental geothermal fluids from SJ 6-3 and SJ 9-4 as they come on-line, while also taking an in-field injection well, SJ 9-2, out of service. SJ 9-2 is currently heating up, with the aim of converting from an injection well to a production well. Given there is no drilling risk and nominal capital cost associated with the possible conversion of SJ 9-2, any incremental power generation is viewed favourably from a risk-adjusted return on capital perspective.

The company now expects, so Marc Murnaghan, Chief Executive Officer of Polaris Infrastructure, “strong and sustainable steam flows [from the San Jacinto-Tizate Geothermal Power Plant] and [looks] forward to seeing the tangible results of the drilling program in the upcoming quarters.”

Source: Company release on financial results for quarter ending June 30, 2016