Chevron – Here’s Why Chevron and BP Are Investing in Geothermal Energy
Miles below the surface of the earth, there’s an origin of renewable energy that is capable of sustaining all of humanity for the expected future.
(Photo : Getty Images)
Just about 0.1% of Earth’s entire heat content could meet the needs of our energy for 2 million years, as stated by ARPA-E, the government agency that sponsors R&D attempts for improved energy technologies. It’s known as geothermal energy, it is sort of old news in some ways. Since the late 1800s, It’s been used in heating buildings and since the 1900s provide electricity.
The U.S. has the highest installed geothermal capacity in the world, but it is still just responsible for around 0.4% of our total electricity mix. That’s due to the fact that in most places, it’s very high-priced and challenging to auger geothermal wells. There could be a change in a short time, though.
A number of establishments in the geothermal space have obtained traction, like Sage Geoystems, GreenFire Energy, Fervo Energy, and Eavor Technologies over the last few years. While their technologies and methods vary, all are attempting to puzzle out how to gain access to the “heat below our feet” in areas that have traditionally been considered too hard to reach.
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Sources of Geothermal Energy
First used in 1904 in Italy, geothermal in recent years has been a constant – and increasing – energy source. Geothermal energy has developed steadily from about 10GW worldwide in 2010 to 13.3GW in 2018, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
Geothermal energy is the heat that emerges from the earth’s sub-surface. It is can be seen in the rocks and fluids below the earth’s crust and can be discovered as far down to the earth’s hot molten rock, magma.To generate power from geothermal energy, wells are usually dug a mile deep into reservoirs that are underground to gain access to the steam and hot water there, which can then be used in the driving of turbines that are connected to electricity generators.
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Geothermal Power Plant
There are three kinds of geothermal power plant which includes, flash, dry steam, and binary. The oldest form of geothermal technology is dry steam and it removes steam out of the ground and uses it for the direct driving of a turbine. Flash plants use high-pressure hot water into low-pressure, cool water while binary plants move hot water via a secondary liquid with a lower boiling point, which changes to vapor so that the turbine will be driven.
More than 20 countries make use of Geothermal energy. The largest geothermal energy producer in the world is the United States and it hosts the largest geothermal field. Called the Geysers in California, the field extends over 117 square kilometers and made of 22 power plants, with an installed capacity of more than 1.5GW.
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