Our mission is to establish geothermal energy as one of the main renewable energy sources in Scotland and the rest of the UK. This will be accomplished by accessing the abundant geothermal energy of Scotland’s deep geology, which will provide zero-carbon, 24 hour, renewable electricity and heat to communities of industrial, commercial and domestic energy users. When geothermal power is combined locally with other renewables, these communities will be completely self-sufficient and sustainable, which will reduce the strain on the national grid and the environment.
Our ultimate mission is to help Scotland achieve its ambitious 2020 renewable energy targets, by integrating geothermal energy into the renewable energy system to create a sustainable nation free from CO2 emissions.
Geothermal energy has been used for thousands of years in some countries for cooking and heating. It is simply power derived from the Earth's internal heat. This thermal energy is contained in the rock and fluids beneath Earth's crust. It can be found from shallow ground to several miles below the surface, and even farther down to the extremely hot molten rock called magma.
These underground reservoirs of steam and hot water can be tapped to generate electricity or to heat and cool buildings directly.
Historically to produce geothermal-generated electricity, wells, sometimes a mile (1.6 kilometers) deep or more, are drilled into underground reservoirs to tap steam and very hot water that drive turbines linked to electricity generators. The first geothermally generated electricity was produced in Larderello, Italy, in 1904.
Our proposal is to drill to 6000m vertically then 1000m horizontally. We shall then pump fluid down which will return to surface super-heated, in the range 180C – 240C. This water will power a Binary Cycle Turbine to generate electricity and also supply large volumes of heat for both commercial & domestic use.
There are three types of geothermal power plants: dry steam, flash, and binary. Dry steam, the oldest geothermal technology, takes steam out of fractures in the ground and uses it to directly drive a turbine. Flash plants pull deep, high-pressure hot water into cooler, low-pressure water. The steam that results from this process is used to drive the turbine. In binary plants, the hot water is passed by a secondary fluid with a much lower boiling point than water. This causes the secondary fluid to turn to vapor, which then drives a turbine. Most geothermal power plants in the future will be binary plants.
Geothermal energy is generated in over 20 countries. The United States is the world's largest producer, and the largest geothermal development in the world is The Geysers north of San Francisco in California. In Iceland, many of the buildings and even swimming pools are heated with geothermal hot water. Iceland has at least 25 active volcanoes and many hot springs and geysers.
There are many advantages of geothermal energy.
It can be extracted without burning a fossil fuel such as coal, gas, or oil. Geothermal fields produce only about one-sixth of the carbon dioxide that a relatively clean natural-gas-fueled power plant produces. However the system we propose, a closed loop system, produces no CO2 emissions. Unlike solar and wind energy, geothermal energy is always available, 365 days a year. It's also relatively inexpensive; savings from direct use can be as much as 80 percent over fossil fuels.
But it has some environmental problems. One potential concern is the release of small amounts H2S, a gas that smells like rotten egg at low concentrations. Another concern is the disposal of some geothermal fluids, which may contain low levels of toxic materials. These concerns can be managed in a safe environmental manner.
Although geothermal sites are capable of providing heat for many decades, eventually specific locations may cool down.
Friends of the Earth Scotland urged the government to explore the potential of geothermal on a wider scale because of its “near-zero climate emissions”, though the charity cautioned against use of fracking to access heat energy. Richard Dixon, its director, said: “The Scottish government needs to take the lead and a pilot scheme would be very valuable in establishing the potential as well as allowing testing for local environmental impacts.” Our proposed system does not use “Fracking”, which has proved to be politically unpopular in Scotland.
WWF Scotland said the government had to do more to meet its own targets on reducing carbon emissions, almost half of which are caused by heating homes and offices. Sam Gardner, head of policy, said: “No stone can be left unturned in our efforts to find low cost, renewable sources of heat and power.”
The Scottish government aims to generate 11 per cent of heat from renewables by 2020. Figures indicate that it is about half way towards meeting the target. It has acknowledged the need for a pilot project to assess the potential for geothermal energy but nothing is planned yet.
Geothermal Power Ltd. (GPL) is a start-up company. A new company bringing together a team of experts rather than “start up “
Following informal discussions with leading Scottish academics involved in deep geothermal research the GPL drilling team studied the practical and economic issues involved in ultra deep geothermal drilling. Utilising their considerable expertise and experience in extreme drilling environments the GPL team has developed an entirely new concept in well/borehole design for which a patent application is pending.
To date most geothermal wellbore designs use two boreholes with hydraulic fracturing between the holes. This is expensive and inconsistent in results given the dependency on the positioning of the two boreholes relative to one another and the difficulty in joining the 2 holes together at depth.
Other systems use a single completely enclosed borehole resulting in the fluid used, (salt water) never coming into contact with the rock formation.
The GPL system, which as already stated we have applied to patent, uses one borehole for the supply and return of the salt water fluid. Drilling down to +/-6000 metres with a 1000 metre horizontal step out, the fluid used passes between the outer side of the completion casing and the rock formation giving close to 100% thermal efficiency. The system does not require fracturing the rock formation.