Wednesday, February 20, 2019

USA, California: 20 MW Non-Hydro Geothermal Power Plant Project Moves On

GeoGenCo's Zero Water Geothermal Technology Helps Imperial Irrigation District Achieve Green Energy Goals (News Release)

Mud Volcanoes at the Davis-Schrimpf Seep Field
with the John L. Featherstone geothermal power plant
in the background. Photo Ian Crawford  2013.
GeoGenCo, LLC, of Las Vegas, Nevada, has completed their semi-final designs for their next generation True Geothermal 20-megawatt (MW) power plant in Imperial Valley, CA. GeoGenCo has a 15 MW Power Purchase Agreement with Imperial Irrigation District (IID) and expects to be providing power by June of 2020.

GRC Member Jim McIntosh (Mac), GeoGenCo's CEO and COO states, "The project is identified as True Geothermal because all current geothermal projects require substantial amounts of water or steam as part of their power generation process. and are therefore, more appropriately known as hydro-geothermal since water is a mandatory part of the geothermal process (either in the form of brine or steam) for both the extraction of heat and for the disposal of the residual brine."

True Geothermal does not utilize any water in their power generation process.  Rather than extracting the geothermal fluids, a high-performance heat exchanger is inserted into an existing (but non-performing) geothermal well where only heat is extracted from the geothermal formation, not from water, brine or steam.  While a permit application for approximately six acre-feet of water has been filed, about one third of this water will be utilized for dust control and the other two thirds reserved for emergency fire-fighting purposes. Zero water will be utilized for the power generation process.