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GLRPPR Sector Resource: Ways to Minimize Water Usage in Engineered Geothermal Systems

Ways to Minimize Water Usage in Engineered Geothermal Systems

To address problems such as greenhouse gas emissions and energy security, the US is considering renewable resources, such as geothermal energy. Hydrothermal systems produce about 3000 MWe domestically; however, electricity may also come from engineered geothermal systems (EGS) with siting issues such as low-permeability rock, limited water, and deep wells. Water use can be reduced with a power cycle that works efficiently with air cooling, using refrigerant mixtures. Heat extraction from the subsurface represents another aspect of geothermal water use because complex fluid-rock interactions affect heat transport and lifetime performance. These factors all contribute to the viability of EGS.


Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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