Going “Green” for Geothermal Energy


ElectraTherm, Inc.’s Texas partner, Gulf Coast Green Energy, will employ ElectraTherm Green Machines to make clean electricity at two projects funded by the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America. The first of those projects will make power from heat captured in geothermal brine, a common byproduct of drilling for oil. ElectraTherm Green Machines can convert low temperature (200 degree F) geothermal heat into electricity for on-site consumption, or to sell power to the grid. The ElectraTherm Green Machine can produce power from a wide array of heat sources including industrial waste heat, stationary engines, biomass, and solar thermal installations. Recently, interest in geothermal applications has taken center stage.

“Generating electricity from geothermal sources is ideal because it harnesses local energy sources and provides a secure domestic energy supply with stable output,” said Bill Olson, ElectraTherm’s senior vice president of business development.

“Given the modularity and scalability of ElectraTherm’s technology, the company plans to introduce geothermal systems from the current 50 kW size up to 500 kW. ElectraTherm’s smaller units can economically address smaller geothermal resources—including the tens of thousands of oil and gas wells in the US and Canada alone. ElectraTherm’s larger units can be installed in parallel to rapidly construct multi-megawatt plants for larger geothermal resources.”According to a study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, if 40% of the geothermal heat was tapped under the United States, it would meet demand 56,000 times over. MIT said an investment of $800 million to $1 billion could produce more than 100 gigawatts of electricity by 2050, equaling the combined output of all 104 nuclear power plants in the US.

Original Article by North American Clean Energy at http://www.nacleanenergy.com/?action=article&id=8034