Content displaying: Representative Technology

Geothermal

Representative Technology

Performance Assumptions by Scenario

Scenario

Rate of Penetration (ft/hr)

Bit Life (hr)

EGS Flow Rate (kg/s)

Conservative (2018)

25

50

40

Moderate

50

100

40

Advanced

100

200

80 flash / 110 binary

Hydrothermal

Hydrothermal geothermal technologies encompass technologies for exploring for the resource, drilling to access the resource, and building power plants to convert geothermal energy to electricity. Technology costs depend heavily on the hydrothermal resource temperature and well productivity and depth, so much so that project costs are site-specific and applying a "typical" cost to any given site would be inaccurate. The 2020 ATB uses scenarios developed by the DOE Geothermal Technologies Office (Mines, 2013) for representative binary and flash hydrothermal power plant technologies.

The first scenario assumes a 175°C resource at a depth of 1.5 km with wells producing an average of 110 kg/s of geothermal brine supplied to a 30-MWe binary (organic Rankine cycle) power plant. The second scenario assumes a 225°C resource at a depth of 2.5 km with wells producing 80 kg/s of geothermal brine supplied to a 40-MWe dual-flash plant. These are mid-grade or "typical" temperatures and depths for binary and flash hydrothermal projects.

The 2020 ATB representative technologies fall in the middle or near the end of the hydrothermal resources cost estimates typically deployed in Regional Energy Deployment System (ReEDS) model runs.

Enhanced Geothermal Systems

As with costs for projects that use hydrothermal resources, EGS resource project costs depend so heavily on the hydrothermal resource temperature and well productivity and depth that project costs are site-specific. The 2020 ATB uses scenarios developed by the DOE Geothermal Technologies Office (Mines, 2013) for representative binary and flash EGS power plants assuming current (immature) EGS technology performance metrics. The first scenario assumes a 175°C resource at a depth of 3 km with wells producing an average of 40 kg/s of geothermal brine supplied to a 25-MWe binary (organic Rankine cycle) power plant. The second scenario assumes a 250°C resource at a depth of 3.5 km with wells producing 40 kg/s of geothermal brine supplied to a 30-MWe dual-flash plant. These temperatures and depths are at the low-cost end of the EGS supply curve and would be some of the first developed.

References

The following references are specific to this page; for all references in this ATB, see References.

Mines, Greg (2013). Geothermal Electricity Technology Evaluation Model (GETEM). https://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2014/02/f7/mines_getem_peer2013.pdf