Case Study

Developing a tool to reduce the cost of geological exploration

Client | InSituStreTech


InSituStreTech, an EPFL spin-off based in Lausanne, Switzerland, have identified the opportunity to significantly improve geological exploration for geo-energy projects such as Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) or Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).

To overcome the challenges in measuring accurately and reliably in-situ stresses in deep boreholes, the company has developed a system to measure the three orthogonal components of the stress in the rock, with a particular focus on the maximum horizontal stress component.

eg worked with InSituStreTech to establish an outlined set of functional requirements

Understanding the problem

InSituStreTech initially showcased the technology’s viability through successful testing in a laboratory proof of concept. They then approached eg technology for assistance in designing a tool for use in real borehole scenarios. This step aimed to evaluate the technology’s effectiveness under real operating conditions.

To develop suitable design concepts for operation in the harsh environment of deep boreholes, the engineering team at eg technology needed to understand both the critical parameters relating to the operation of the technology, as well as those of the drilling operation process and working environment.

An outline set of functional requirements were established for the tool in collaboration with InSituStreTech, their test site and other project partners to ensure all expertise was imparted and captured for the concept development.

eg brainstorming session

Designing a solution

Layered Stone

eg technology held a series of creative workshops to explore a wide range of ideas and draw from other industry applications, which may be utilised as functional mechanisms within the given geometric and environmental limitations. Further refinement led to the development of two full concepts, which each presented technical feasibility for all parts of the tool insertion, deployment and retrieval process.

Early ideation works well with a broad, multidisciplinary team

End Result

The concepts that eg technology generated are enabling InSituStreTech to refine their technology for integration into deployable hardware and to engineer that for initial testing at the drill test site in Switzerland.

Ultimately, they expect to commercialise the hardware following further testing and development. Working with eg technology to explore a wide landscape of technically feasible concepts has also enabled InSituStreTech to protect a range of embodiments for their technology.

An experienced but fresh perspective can often yield highly innovative, yet pragmatic, solutions.

coal power plant

The implementation concepts eg technology came up with are clever and suited to our application. We have now launched the production of the device for testing in laboratory conditions and more advanced settings. We eagerly await the arrival of the parts!

Alex HorvathInSituStreTech | EPFL

We’re delighted to have helped InSituStreTech progress their technology to the point where they can test and demonstrate it in a real application. This is a perfect example of how our creative thinking and practical experience helps leading innovators commercialise their core technology into the most demanding applications.

Zane van RomundeAssociate Director | eg technology
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Are you ready to develop your product or idea?

For further information on how eg technology can support in getting your technology or ideas to market or to chat with one of the eg team about your product design and development requirements, please get in touch.

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Further examples of our work in MedTech

Every project we work on is tailored to the needs of our clients. This extends to their privacy requirements and as such this selection of case studies includes those which our clients are happy for us to share. For more information, please get in touch.