To the warmth of the depth under our feet, geothermal energy could be an excellent tool for the energy transitionfrom providing 0.4% of the current world energy More than 20%, 30% or even more than 50% by 2050.
This is the forecast made by Matt Houde, Quaise Energy’s co-founder and project director, at the SOSV Climate Technology Summit 2022, a global venture capital firm held on October 25 and 26.
at a roundtable meeting entitled Is it time for geothermal energy?expert, one of Quaise’s Unique drilling technique to reach hot rock 5,000 to 20,000 meters below the Earth’s surface.
In addition to being clean and globally accessible, Geothermal energy can be used 24 hours a day, unlike solar or wind.. “The most powerful and abundant renewable resource in the world,” said Carlos Araque, Quaise’s CEO and co-founder. “It’s much more than wind, solar, nuclear and all fossil fuels combined,” he said.
In addition, considering the amount of land use per unit of energy produced, the amount of materials needed and the carbon footprint released, geothermal reveals its full potential, although it takes a lot of time and capital to exploit this resource. “You should start playing at $100 million or even $1,000 million,” he says about the distribution.
He’s ahead Demonstrate Quaise deep drilling technology in situAlthough it has already achieved successful results in the MIT laboratory. By the end of this decade, its aim is to generate power from a coal or gas plant converted into geothermal energy.
“Geothermal steam is used instead of steam from a fossil fuel boiler. This decarbonizes the plant in one stroke, and you can do it 10,000 times with other plants.” In an other saying, The oil and gas industry takes advantage by redesigning its workforce, supply chain and regulatory framework.
Geothermal pumps are as simple as “installing an oven or air conditioner”
Another symposium participant was Kathy Hannun, co-founder and president of Dandelion Energy, a company that uses geothermal energy to heat and cool residential homes using technology that does not require deep drilling.
The expert stressed the importance of simplifying complexity to reduce costs so that Installing a geothermal pump is as easy as an oven or air conditioner.
In addition, one of the most important challenges for the industry is improve imaging systems to explore the underground, develop electronic devices that can withstand high temperatures, or advance in air conditioning systems from the most sophisticated homes.
Araque CEO says it’s also important to invest in other parts of the ecosystem that make geothermal power more scalable: not just in core technology, but in permits, licenses, and transmission-related products and businesses.
“The total energy content of heat stored underground exceeds our annual energy needs as a planet by a billion times. Using some of it will be enough to meet our energy needs for the foreseeable future,” Houde said in a press release last year. Thursday.
There is still enough room to dig a depth of 16 kilometers, but as soon as technological development improves, geothermal energy key player in the energy transition.
until date, The deepest well drilled to date is the 12-kilometer-deep Kola borehole.. It took 20 years to complete due to traditional equipment such as mechanical bits could not withstand conditions at these depths.
Quaise technology replaces drill bits for millimeter wave power
Quaise technology changes the game, replacing drill bits with millimeter wave energy that melts and then vaporizes rock to create deeper holes. 15 years in development and MIT proven the ability to drill holes in basalt.
These waves are perfect for “hard, hot, crystalline rocks of depths where conventional drilling is difficult”. They are less effective for softer, shallower formations where conventional drilling is still effective. In the coming years, they will take action to bring geothermal energy to the fore.
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