Fervo Energy’s ‘Project Red’ Results Are a Historic Breakthrough for Geothermal Energy – What Comes Next?

Fervo Energy announced the results from their ‘Project Red’ pilot in northern Nevada (Norbeck and Latimer, 2023; Ma, 2023). The results are spectacular. For nearly 50 years, the goal of Enhanced Geothermal Systems (aka, Hot Dry Rock) has been to convert low permeability, hot formations into economically viable geothermal reservoirs (Murphy et al., 1977). Success has been elusive. During stimulation, flow tends to localize into a small number of flowing fracture pathways. This limits the flow capacity and heat sweep efficiency of the resulting reservoir.