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DOE Geothermal Energy Program. John T. Finger Geothermal Research Department Sandia National Laboratories 1

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Doe geothermal energy program

DOE Geothermal Energy Program

John T. Finger

Geothermal Research Department

Sandia National Laboratories1

1Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a Lockheed Martin Company, for the U. S. Department of Energy under contract DE-ACO4-94AL85000.


World interest is heating up
World Interest is Heating Up

1. United States: 2850 MWe

2. Philippines: 1909 MWe

3. Italy: 785 MWe

4. Mexico: 755 MWe

5. Japan: 547 MWe

World Total: 8500 MW


Two kinds of geothermal application

Direct Use

(30-acre Greenhouse, NM)

Power Generation

(The Geysers, CA)

Two Kinds of Geothermal Application


Heat and power for the 21 st century

Greater Than 20 MW

Less than 20 MW

Heat and Power for the 21st Century

Installed:

Over 2800 MW (electric)

Over 500 MW (heat)

60 MWt

102 MWt

28 MWt

200 MWe

69 MWt

40 MWe

51 MWt

30 MWt

2500 MWe

114 MWt

22 MWt

54 MWt

30 MWe


Why a federal geothermal program
Why a Federal Geothermal Program?

  • Energy

    - Balance national energy portfolio

  • Economics

    - Capture domestic and international markets

  • Environment

    - Limit impacts of power production

Mission: To work in partnership with U.S. industry to establish geothermal energy as an economically competitive contributor to the U.S. energy supply.


Program structure

National Laboratories

Core research

Exploration

EGS

Geoscience and Supporting Technologies

Innovative subsystems

Diagnostics while drilling

GeoPowering the West

Advanced Plant Systems

Geothermal System

Drilling Research

Energy Systems Research

Near-term technology development

Field Verification

Industry Support

Industry Partnerships

University Research

U.S. Industry

Program Structure


Geothermal program goals
Geothermal Program Goals

GeoPowering the West

Program Goal

Technology

Double the number of States with geothermal electric power facilities to eight by 2006.

Reduce the levelized cost of generating geothermal power to 3-5 cents/kWh by 2007.

Supply the electrical power or heat energy needs of 7 million homes and businesses in the United States by 2010.

Supply 10%of electricity used in the western states by 2020.

Capacity

Deployment


Geopowering the west
GeoPowering the West

  • Announced January 2000

  • Initiative to dramatically increase the use of geothermal energy in the United States

  • Increase focus on direct use

  • Technology is increasingly competitive

  • 300 communities in 10 states with viable resources within 5 miles


Guiding principles

Regionally-Based

Focus on Priority Areas

Leverage Resources and Replicate Results

Coordinated Activities

Guiding Principles


Why Is Industry Ready Now?

  • Green Power / Deregulation

  • Improved Economics

  • Smaller, Lower-Risk Projects


Major technical issues
Major Technical Issues

  • Reservoir location and characterization

  • Reservoir enhancement

  • Fluid treatment in power plants

  • High-cost drilling and completion


Federally supported research
Federally Supported Research

  • Universities

  • Industry partnerships

  • Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)

  • National Labs


University programs
University Programs

  • Earth and Geosciences Institute - University of Utah

  • Geothermal Lab - Southern Methodist University

  • Stanford Geothermal Program

  • Geo-Heat Center - Oregon Institute of Technology



Small business innovation research
Small Business Innovation Research

  • Phase I - 4 projects; $377k funding; high-temperature logging tools and transducers

  • Phase II - 5 projects; $3.7M funding; expert systems, high-temperature electronics


National labs
National Labs

  • NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory) – Power plants

  • INEEL (Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory) – Reservoir characterization

  • Sandia National Laboratories – Drilling research


Nrel focus
NREL Focus

NREL aims to make geothermal power plants, primarily using low- to moderate-temperature resources, operate more efficiently and with less maintenance. This effort includes development of different power-cycle technologies and new materials.


Nrel program areas
NREL Program Areas

  • Condensation of mixtures

  • Heat exchanger linings

  • Air-cooled condensers

  • Non-condensable gas removal


Ineel focus
INEEL Focus

INEEL work in geophysics and geoscience is directed toward improved location and definition of geothermal reservoirs. It is particularly important to understand orientation of and flow patterns through large fracture systems in the reservoir.


INEEL Program Areas

  • Resource Identification and Assessment

    • Exploration

    • Fracture Analysis

  • Resource Productivity and Sustainability


Sandia focus
Sandia Focus

  • Sandia works to reduce the cost of drilling and completing geothermal wells. This is critical for increasing power on-line, because the well field (production and injection) can represent up to 50% of a power project’s capital cost.

  • Geothermal drilling is expensive, compared to oil and gas drilling, because the rocks are hot, hard, abrasive, and fractured, and often contain corrosive fluid. The number of geothermal wells drilled each year is small, so there is little incentive for industry to develop geothermal drilling technology.


Sandia program areas
Sandia Program Areas

  • Diagnostics-While-Drilling: real-time, high-speed data from downhole

  • High temperature electronics: better measurements for drilling and reservoir evaluation

  • Hard-rock drill bits: penetrate faster, last longer

  • Lost circulation: mitigate or prevent loss of drilling fluid to the formation


Program accomplishments
Program Accomplishments

PDC Bitsreduced drilling costs

  • Generated > $200m annual sales & economic impact for oil & gas applications

  • Contributed to savings > $200k/well & world-record performances: ROP > 2,200 ft/hr; Single bit run > 22,000 ft; Cumulative run > 180,000 ft

HT Electronics  better measurements for

drilling and reservoir evaluation

Develop downhole logging and drilling tools that provide reliable, accurate data under geothermal conditions

  • Silicon-on-Insulator components

  • Thermal batteries

  • Complete logging assemblies


Program accomplishments1
Program Accomplishments

Slimhole Drillinglower exploration costs

  • Demonstrated 30-55% savings:

  • Showed production correlation (Sandia field tests; Well data)

Lost Circulation Controlsafe, efficient drilling

  • Developed monitoring instruments, now commercialized, for mud properties & flow rate:

    • Mud Density Meter

    • Rolling Float Meter


Program accomplishments2

Advanced Direct Contact Condensers (FY1999) Improves efficiency of flashed and dry steam power plants by as much as 5%

CaP Cement (FY2000) Used in harsh, hostile environments (hypersaline brine, high CO2 content, high acidity, up to 320°C)

Program Accomplishments

R&D 100 Awards

Southeast Geysers Effluent Pipeline

  • Extends reservoir lifetime by 7 to 10 years, improves output by >50 MW

  • Jointly funded by industry, State, Federal, and local agencies


Research needs
Research Needs efficiency of flashed and dry steam power plants by as much as 5%

  • Cheaper drilling

  • Better reservoir exploration and identification

  • Better reservoir evaluation and management

  • More efficient power plants for lower temperatures


Geothermal energy potential
Geothermal Energy Potential efficiency of flashed and dry steam power plants by as much as 5%

Electric Generation Potential

  • Top 3 States:

    • Nevada

    • California

    • Utah

  • Other High Potential

  • States:

    • Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Hawaii, New Mexico, Oregon, and Wyoming


Geothermal basics
Geothermal Basics efficiency of flashed and dry steam power plants by as much as 5%

Geothermal energy

uses the Earth’s

natural heat for some

useful purpose.

Because the center

of the Earth is so hot, almost any location could provide energy if we drill deep enough, but there are only limited locations where hot rock comes near enough the surface for this to be economical.


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