kernenergien | solar sutainable strategy

Geothermal Power

As a result of radioactive processes in the interior of the earth, a heat flow rises to the earth crust and is many times bigger than today’s energy demand of the world. But the heat flow is not used for human purposes and is almost completely lost to the universe.

The heat of each rock layer and underground water reservoirs can also be used for district heating, industrial heat and for electricity production. The main advantages lie in the almost inexhaustible potentials all over the world as much as in the stability of the energy supply. Geothermal power plants can provide a huge part of the base load.

Two main principles of geothermal energy production are dominating. On one hand, hot water or steam is pumped from the soil to the power plant. On the other hand, water from the surface is pumped down in order to heat up and raise to the top again. For Middle Europe the earth heatens up by 3 °C for every 100 m depth.

The Hot-Dry-Rock method is using the second principle. It is used for the electricity production of several hundred MW. The drilling goes down to 5000 m depth in order to gain the heat of the rocks. Through special turbines electricity is produced or district heating systems are served.

The picture shows the earth temperatures in 5000 m depth. Further basic information can be found on Wikipedia.

[inline:1] [inline:2]