Thermochem currently employs 27 people, including highly qualified scientists with extensive energy project experience. Thermochem has field testing personnel with experience in chemical testing services at well sites, drilling rigs, power plants and remote exploration areas. Thermochem maintains two analytical laboratories (USA and Indonesia) where samples from around the world are shipped for analysis. Both facilities provide a base for field testing activities, with test equipment, instrumentation, safety gear, and spare parts. These facilities also maintain on-site temperature, pressure and flow calibration instrumentation.
Paul Hirtz, is the President of Thermochem, Inc. Paul has worked as a consultant and researcher for the energy industry for the past 25 years. He holds a B.S. in Chemistry from Sonoma State University. Paul is the chairman of ASTM committees E44.15 and E44.40 which develop and standardize chemical testing procedures and materials selection for the energy industry. Paul is an editorial board member for the Geoscience journal Geothermics, and board member of the Geothermal Resource Council. He has published over 25 technical papers related to exploring issues specific to the energy industry, and has obtained patents and exclusive license agreements on several instruments and chemical processes now in use.
Paul is specialized in chemical computer modeling of water and gas chemistry for chemical engineering process studies. He has extensive experience in pilot-plant and full-scale testing for the evaluation and development of new chemical processes. Paul has developed instrumentation and chemical processes such as H2S abatement, scale control, continuous non-condensable gas monitors, two-phase high-temperature wellbore samplers, corrosion mitigation systems, on-line steam quality monitors using conventional and laser-based technology, and the measurement of two-phase flow using chemical tracers.
The corrosion mitigation process (CMF) currently used at The Geysers was first designed and put into commercial service by Paul at the Aidlin Project for Mission Power Corporation in 1989. Subsequently he has developed a new process under DOE and CEC funding, termed Dry Steam Scrubbing (DSS), that will replace the CMF process for direct HCl removal from superheated steam. The Tracer Flow Test (TFT) technique, developed by Paul in 1992, is the primary standard for measuring two-phase flow in geothermal fields worldwide. The steam purity and quality monitoring equipment developed by Paul is also the standard in power plants, and may soon be replaced by a new generation of laser-based fiber optic instruments that are in the testing stage now. As President of Thermochem, Paul continues to direct major research projects and consulting projects for a wide spectrum of energy industries.
Senior Consulting Geochemist
Philip Molling is the senior consulting geochemist to Thermochem, Inc. He has a PhD in Geochemistry from Johns Hopkins University , MS in Economic Geology from Miami University (Ohio) and a BS in Geology from Marietta College. Phil is recently retired from Unocal Geothermal after 16 years and had worked as an exploration/mining economic geologist for Unocal Molycorp for the previous 8 years. His geothermal activities included exploration/assessment of prospects in Sumatra, Central America and South America. He was the primary geochemist at The Geysers for 3 years where he developed a generation/prediction model of HCl production along with other geochemists. He was the chief architect of the most recent geochemical conceptual models for the Tiwi, Mak-Ban (Bulalo), Awibengkok (Salak) and the Wayang Windu geothermal fields. As a development geochemist/geologist for these fields, he helped provide targets for make-up drilling, identify and predict injectate and groundwater breakthrough, develop injection strategies, and finally he developed models to predict/project NCG production.
Working for Unocal Geothermal provided him access to the world’s largest geochemical geothermal database. This has allowed him to perform geochemical analog studies on almost all geothermal fields in the world. He is well-versed in geochemical modeling tools: CHILLER, HCh and Geochemist’s Workbench, as well as, the reactive transport modeling tool, TOUGHREACT.
Phil is currently consulting in the geothermal industry for Thermochem and has recently finished conceptual modeling studies of Geothermal Fields in Kenya and the western USA.
Russell Kunzman is the Senior Chemist for Thermochem, Inc. Russell holds a B.A. in Chemistry from Sonoma State University. He has been with Thermochem for over 20 years, initially as a field chemist, Information Technology manager, Laboratory Director and finally Senior Research Chemist. Mr. Kunzman was previously an analytical chemist with Anatec Laboratories, field instrument specialist with Exlog/Smith Geothermal Division from 1984-1985.
Russell’s analytical expertise is in trace metals analysis by atomic absorption and emission spectroscopy on solid and aqueous samples, and analysis fixed gases, trace hydrocarbon, and sulfur gases by gas chromatography utilizing TCD, FID, PID, ECD, and SCD detectors. He has extensive experience in the development of field methods and laboratories for on-site analysis at power plants.
Russell has developed chemical computer modeling software for the study of vapor/liquid gas and electrolyte reactions. He developed programs for laboratory and field data reduction, many of which are included with products sold by Thermochem. He also developed programs using relational database to enhance quality control by comparison of new data to existing historical data to detect trends in long term monitoring projects. Mr. Kunzman is responsible for the development of instrumentation and software to collect data from field continuous chemical monitors, steam quality systems and down-hole logging sampling tools.
As Senior Chemist at Thermochem, Mr. Kunzman is responsible for all the specialized analytical services that Thermochem offers the energy industry. He maintains the high quality control standards that Thermochem is known for, as evidenced by long-term analytical contracts with major oil companies such as Unocal and Chevron, and top performance in regular round-robin lab comparison studies.
Field Services and Product Manager
Matt Broaddus is the Field Services and Product Manager for Thermochem, Inc. Matt holds a B.S. degree in Biochemistry from University of California, Davis. Matt started with Thermochem in 1994. He was originally hired as a chemist with primary duties in elemental analysis by FAA, GFAA, and VGAA analysis and gas chromatography using ECD, TCD, PID, and FID detectors. His current analytical expertise is in the development of HPLC analysis methods for reservoir tracers used in geothermal injection studies and oil field water flood tracer tests.
Matt became Laboratory Director for PT. Thermochem Indonesia in 1997, where he started-up the new facility and developed all analysis and data reporting procedures. Matt hired, trained, and supervised 6 Indonesian employees. He directed all laboratory testing and field services at multiple geothermal and oil and gas project sites within Indonesia.
Matt has previous experience as a chemist with the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Agency, National Environmental Technology Center. He was involved in the development and implementation of hazardous materials remediation procedures, and characterization of environmental contaminant transport.
As Field Services Manager for Thermochem, Matt provides planning and on-site supervision of field sampling, multi-phase flow measurement and pilot-plant testing projects worldwide, including Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Nicaragua, Guatemala, New Zealand and the USA. He also has continued responsibility for operations at PT. Thermochem Indonesia. As Product Manager, Matt ensures that specialty test instrumentation manufactured by Thermochem meets stringent QC requirements, and incorporates the latest available technology to maintain these products as robust and cost-effective instruments for use in harsh environments. He is also responsible for the on-site training and the maintenance for these products.