Mol, 16 July 2015 – As the most visible phase of the deep geothermal energy project at the Balmatt site starts at the end of this month, VITO invited local inhabitants for an Info Day on the further course of the project. One year after the demolition of the cooling tower and chimneys of the Electrabel plant and the clearing of the site, the second phase will start in August: the first drilling. VITO announced the timing of the project, from the launch of the drilling rig at the end of July and the start of the first drilling in August to the evaluation of the first drilling and the decision to perform a second drilling. Furthermore, VITO informed the neighbours about the planned roll out of the heating network surrounding the Balmatt site. For questions, visitors could turn to a team of VITO experts in the field of sustainable energy, closely involved in the Balmatt project. Around 150 people dropped by and showed a lot of interest in the project, as did the regional press. VITO is keeping them informed of the next steps, also via facebook.com/balmattsite.

At the Balmatt site in Mol, hot water from a few kilometres below the surface will be used for the production of sustainable energy for domestic and industrial use. At first, VITO will use the energy to heat its own VITO buildings. At a later stage, the possibility exists that other nearby companies and homes may also join by means of a heating network. In order to realise this, a drilling in the deep subsurface must be performed. For this, a temporary 60 m high drilling rig will be installed in August. The drilling rig will create 2 wells up to a depth of approx. 4 km.

A drilling to such depths is a valuable research project, unique in Flanders. The drilling will  be carried out by the THV Balmatt Drilling, founded by the German drilling company Daldrup & Söhne AG and Smet Group from Dessel. Both companies are experts in soil drilling.

The results of the exploratory drilling are expected by December 2015 and are crucial for the further course of this pilot project. If the drillings are finished, the drilling rig will be removed and we will be able to pump up hot water from the first well, and pump it back into the second well.

More info on the Balmatt project

More info on deep geothermal energy:


Photos Info Day


More photos on the Balmatt Facebook page


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