The U.S. state of Utah is processing an agreement for a new Small Modular Reactor (SMR) to provide baseline and dispatchable power. The SMR bid quotes a price of $89/MWh. But cost overruns will tie the state’s consumers to whatever high prices entail, says Dennis Wamsted at IEEFA. Now a geothermal bid from NV Energy has been presented that offers the same capacity at around $70/MWh. Wamsted explains why the 140MW geothermal project would meet … [Read more...]
Canada to tap Dormant Volcanoes for Geothermal energy
Live volcanoes might be an obvious source of geothermal energy if it wasn’t for the fact they were dangerous. But dormant volcanoes aren’t, yet they still host vast reservoirs of natural heat near the Earth’s surface. So Canada is looking to generate power from Mount Meager and Mount Cayley, two dormant volcanoes north of Vancouver, explains Lizzy Rosenberg writing for the World Economic Forum. Although Canada isn't known for its volcanoes, its … [Read more...]
Deep Geothermal: accessing 500°C for steam turbines. Can it make coal, gas, nuclear redundant?
The concept of “deep geothermal” is very simple. Dig deep enough, like 20km, to access a permanent reservoir of 500°C of heat. There, you generate the steam to power your turbines. The digging of a stable hole and getting the steam to the turbine is the big engineering challenge. But if you find a way that allows you to do it anywhere in the world (i.e. not limiting yourself to existing geological formations), nobody will ever need other … [Read more...]
The Mining industry should simultaneously be testing for Geothermal potential
In Nevada alone, the mining industry drills over 2,000 exploration holes per year. They do so to the depths needed to also verify whether the location is suitable for geothermal energy, so it makes sense for them to assess suitability not just for minerals but for geothermal, explains Ryan Horns writing for NREL. Leveraging that data, knowledge, and expertise will expand the geothermal exploration workforce, increase the rate of geothermal … [Read more...]
German Geothermal: from 1.2TWh to 100TWh by 2050?
The IEA’s Sustainable Development Scenario sees the world's geothermal power generation tripling to almost 300 TWh by 2030. That’s because there’s an almost unlimited supply that can provide power, heating and cooling. It’s also a continuous supply uninterrupted by the weather, unlike solar and wind. The plants are small and quiet. For heating, ground-source heat pumps use significantly less electricity than other technologies. Writing for CLEW, … [Read more...]
36bn GWh: the “limitless” Geothermal from old UK coal mines
The Earth gets hotter by 2.5C to 3.5C with each 100m depth. It’s what makes geothermal energy possible, anywhere. In the UK geothermal could meet the nation’s heat demands for at least 100 years, say Jon Gluyas, Andrew Crossland and Charlotte Adams of the Durham Energy Institute. Properly managed it could last indefinitely. Given that heat does not travel well, geothermal must be developed locally. Fortunately, accessible heat lies beneath or … [Read more...]