Tuesday, September 10, 2019

New Zealand: Commercial Extraction of Silica from Geothermal Brine Plant Begins Construction

Construction begins on new ‘green mining’ geothermal project (News Release)

The first soil has been turned to mark the beginning of construction of a world-first commercial-scale plant to extract valuable minerals from geothermal fluid.

Geo40's commercial demonstration plant at Ohaaki.
Geo40 has developed the technology to extract silica and other valuable minerals from geothermal fluid once it has been used for geothermal power generation and before the fluid is reinjected back into the underground geothermal reservoir.

In July, Geo40 was awarded $15 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to enable its demonstration plant on the Ohaaki geothermal field to be scaled to a commercial plant.

In addition to the silica extracted from geothermal fluid, Geo40 is also developing the technology to extract other minerals, including lithium. Laboratory research in the USA, Japan and recently in New Zealand has confirmed that over 90 per cent of lithium from the Ohaaki geothermal fluid can be extracted and Geo40 will look to test this technology in its commercial demonstration plant in late 2019.

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From the Global Geothermal News archives: