GeoMTES – Conceptual model for the energetic reuse of a closed down mine

Conceptual model of seasonal heat storage in abandoned mines

Project: GeoMTES – Conceptual model of a Mine Thermal Energy Storage for the energetic reuse of a mine on the example of the Prosper-Haniel hard coal mine in Bottrop, Germany

Project partner: GZB; RAG AG; delta h

Project sponsor: Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH (PTJ)

Duration: 2014 - 2017


The goal of this R&D project is to create a technically and economically feasible conceptual model for a  Mine Thermal Energy Storage (Geo-MTES) for the energetic reuse of a mine on the example of the Prosper-Haniel hard coal mine in Bottrop, Germany.

At the end of 2018, the last operative hard coal mine in Germany (Prosper-Haniel), is going to be closed down, plugged and abandoned. Large amounts of subsurface infrastructure, resembled mainly by open parts of former galleries and mining faces are going to be flooded after the mine is closed down and therefore have the potential to become an enormous geothermal reservoir for seasonal heat storage. During the summer non used heat from solar thermal power plants, garbage incineration, combined heat and power plants (CHP) or industrial production processes can be stored within dedicated drifts of the mine. During the winter season this surplus heat can be extracted and directly utilized in single construction complexes and in city areas, which are not connected to the existing district heating grid.

For the implementation of such a MTES within a former hard coal mine, the corresponding infrastructure measures and appropriate circulation applications have to be developed. Precondition for this development is the presence of a still active and fully open mine, which is resembled by the Proper-Haniel hard coal mine (accessible till the end of 2018). An investigation of the most relevant geotechnical, hydrogeological and geophysical parameters of the Prosper-Haniel hard coal mine is going to be performed. As a foundation for the implementation of a seasonal heat storage the undisturbed rock temperatures range between 30°C and well over 50°C within the galleries and mining faces that are going to be flooded, after the mine is fully closed down. The total mining area consists of 165 km2 and the subsurface galleries have a total length of 141 km, at a maximum depth of more than 1200 m. Prosper-Haniel is accessible via four vertical shafts and a conveyor system leading into the mine. These open shafts and drifts allow a comparatively easy accessibility and technical feasibility of a MTES.



Zusätzliche Information


Dipl.-Geophys. Gregor Bussmann

Manager Infrastructure and Applications

Room: G1 1-007
Phone: +49 (0)234 32-10794

Gregor Bussmann

Florian Hahn, M. Sc. Mineral Resource Engineering

PhD student

Department: Infrastructure & Applications

Room: G1 1

Tel.: +49 (0)234 32-10865

Florian Hahn