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Contact Energy, New Zealand, is the second largest electricity generator in the country.

They operate five geothermal power stations across three fields – Ohaaki, Wairakei and Tauhara.

For the last ten years Contact Energy has been on a journey to get resource appraisals, assessment and review more into the 3D space. Seequent has been a key partner in this journey. Leapfrog Geothermal has enabled Contact to become agile in finding answers to they can readily adapt to new information and plan accordingly.


3 min

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Video Transcript

[00:00:00.579](calming music)

[00:00:08.670]<v ->Contact Energy operate across three geothermal fields,</v>

[00:00:11.420]in the Taupo Volcanic Zone, Ohaaki, Wairakei and Tauhara

[00:00:16.330]and we have five geothermal power stations on those fields,

[00:00:19.910]generating about 430 megawatts

[00:00:22.610]of electricity from geothermal.

[00:00:24.540]<v ->We are the second largest generator</v>

[00:00:27.350]of electricity in New Zealand.

[00:00:29.120]<v ->Our operations in New Zealand</v>

[00:00:30.470]have a very very long history.

[00:00:32.430]<v ->Wairakei has been in operation for more than 60 years now,</v>

[00:00:35.420]and still going strong.

[00:00:37.525]2026, is when the Wairakei consents expire,

[00:00:41.300]and Contact is planning

[00:00:42.730]to apply for a renewal of those consents.

[00:00:45.810]<v ->As part of our consent to operate on these fields,</v>

[00:00:48.860]we interact with the regional councils.

[00:00:51.510]In the last 10 years, Contact’s been on a journey,

[00:00:53.690]like the rest of the geothermal industry,

[00:00:55.450]to get their resource appraisal assessment

[00:00:58.460]and review more into a 3D space.

[00:01:00.430]<v ->We find that visuals is always a common language</v>

[00:01:03.480]that everyone understands.

[00:01:05.580]<v ->Seequent offers the Leapfrog geothermal software.</v>

[00:01:08.440]It’s definitely been a big step forward in communication,

[00:01:11.860]to the broader team, both within the company,

[00:01:14.070]but also actually outwardly into the community as well.

[00:01:16.280]<v ->So that’s a critical part of our business,</v>

[00:01:18.870]and being able to visualize things

[00:01:20.850]that you can’t see easily from the surface,

[00:01:24.300]is absolutely essential for us.

[00:01:25.990]<v ->Leapfrog can also give us the opportunity</v>

[00:01:28.014]to simplify some of the concepts we deal with

[00:01:30.750]to actually get people

[00:01:31.590]to interact with them a little bit more readily.

[00:01:34.000]It’s also been a really strong evolution on

[00:01:36.130]how we look at linking understanding

[00:01:38.640]from a geo-science perspective of the subsurface

[00:01:40.880]with our geologists, geophysicists, and geochemists.

[00:01:44.270]<v ->Seequent technology, in essence,</v>

[00:01:45.380]supports all our range of subsurface activities,

[00:01:49.760]both monitoring and both drilling.

[00:01:52.760]<v ->We need to combine multiple types of data,</v>

[00:01:54.700]whether it’s geophysics, MT surveys, microseismic data,

[00:01:59.610]alongside structural geology, and formation imaging,

[00:02:02.810]and fractal orientation to give us that picture.

[00:02:05.390]<v ->We understand the data.</v>

[00:02:06.990]We understand the interrelationships of the data.

[00:02:10.170]We can visualize and understand things

[00:02:12.450]that are going on beneath the ground.

[00:02:14.150]<v ->When you start building a picture,</v>

[00:02:15.930]that is consistent, with a range of datasets,

[00:02:19.040]rather than with one particular data set.

[00:02:21.520]From that point of view,

[00:02:22.353]it help us build concept models more reliable

[00:02:26.150]and more consistent with the whole data.

[00:02:29.650]<v ->Leapfrog lets us bring all those things together,</v>

[00:02:32.500]and also rapidly appraise out to help

[00:02:34.540]with our targeting and well prognosis developments.

[00:02:36.890]<v ->It’s a relatively agile tool.</v>

[00:02:40.580]It help us find quick answers to problems

[00:02:43.920]and they help us adapt quickly

[00:02:46.770]to the new information and plan accordingly.

[00:02:49.670]There’s no such thing as two wells

[00:02:52.460]that are exactly the same.

[00:02:53.620]Every time we plan a new well,

[00:02:55.140]we’re going into a new reservoir area,

[00:02:58.350]and we’re faced with unique challenges.

[00:03:00.230]So, that’s the great thing about geothermal,

[00:03:02.910]and having a tool like Seequent technology,

[00:03:06.220]which help us work with that uncertainty

[00:03:09.100]and the variety of conditions.

[00:03:11.182](calming music)