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Plasmatorch using water steam as plasma-creation gas

Plasma deep drilling technology is one of several drilling technologies that may be able to replace conventional, contact-based rotary systems. These new technologies include plasma deep drilling, water jet, hydrothermal spallation and laser. Companies that embrace plasma-drilling method include GA Drilling, headquartered in Bratislava, Slovakia.

High-energy plasma

High-energy plasma is a technology that targets deep drilling applications. It addresses issues related to drilling in water environments or boreholes with varying diameters.

Physical principle of electrical plasma

Drilling using electrical plasma

An electric arc is a breakdown of a gas that produces a plasma discharge, resulting from a current flowing through normally nonconductive media such as air or another gas. An arc discharge is characterized by a lower voltage than a glow discharge, and relies on thermionic emission of electrons from the electrodes supporting the arc. The electric arc is influenced by factors such as: the gas flow, inner and outer magnetic fields, and construction elements of the chamber that confines the arc. The development of plasma torches to be used as a source of the thermal plasma demands a deep understanding of the discharge chamber processes.


  1. Higher drilling energy efficiency
  2. Continuous drilling without replacement of mechanical parts
  3. Constant casing diameter
  4. Effective transport of disintegrated rock

See also


  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2006) "The Future of Geothermal Energy"
  2. Celim Slovakia (2011) "Arc Discharge, Plasma Torch (different approaches)"
  3. Pierce, K.G., Livesay, B.J., Finger J.T. (1996) "Advanced Drilling System Study"