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Deep Geothermal

A sustainable method to heat buildings, industrial processes and greenhouses is using the heat generated by the Earth's core. This heat is formed by the degradation of radioactive material transported to the Earth's crust by heat conduction. The core temperature drops to the cortex. The figure below shows a schematic profile with temperatures related to depth. Geothermal systems are mainly 1.5 to 3 kilometers above the crust. The normal temperatures at these depths vary between 45°C and 100°C.

Diagram of the Earth.
Figure: Diagram of the Earth

In the crust the average geothermal gradient is 30°C / km, representing an increase of 1°C every 30 meters of descent.

To use the renewable heat, it must be transported to the surface of the Earth. Used to transport hot water that is present in the groundwater that contain water (aquifers). Water is pumped to the surface where heat is extracted. For the exploration of geothermal energy is economically interesting is that the aquifer be possible to extract a significant amount of hot water. Due to the high yields required are not all aquifers are adequate.

The geothermal water contains many dissolved salts in general. Because of this the water cannot be disposed of in the surface waters (rivers, lakes, ...) or a sewage system. After extraction of heat the cooling water is re-injected into the same aquifer from which it was extracted. This has the additional advantage that the pressure drop in the aquifer will not increase over time.

Basic scheme of a deep geothermal system at high temperature.
Figure: Basic scheme of a deep geothermal system at high temperature.

Example Projects

Geothermal power plant in The Hague (Netherlands)Geothermal power plant in The Hague (Netherlands)

Deep geothermal for heating of 4,000 homes

Geothermal power plant in The Hague (Netherlands)

Deep geothermal for heating of 4,000 homes

Steps already taken:
- Feasibility study.
- Pre-design.
- exploration permit.
- detailed geological study.
- Engineer detailed reservoir and wells.
- Application for permits required
- Conducting surveys (2010).

Drilling on siteTesting of well
Drilling on siteTesting of well
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