Geothermal energy potential in Texas alone

Maria Richards
SMU Geothermal Laboratory
Dallas, Texas
[email protected]
Matthew Hornbach
Faculty - Earth Sciences
[email protected]
Cathy Chickering Pace
Project Specialist
[email protected]
Research and Outreach information
Geothermal Energy exists
Geothermal energy potential in United States
Based on our research for
The energy below the United States is 10 times
the installed capacity of coal-fired power plants
Geothermal energy potential in Texas alone …
Research by
Bruce Cutright of UT Austin, BEG:
A "Giant" oil field contains
> 500 million barrels of oil.
World-wide there are 932 fields.
Convert that to Joules for power comparison …
The Texas Gulf Coast = 3,100 "Giants" in stored thermal energy.
Companies are working today to extract the
hot brine & dissolved methane!
Temperature Maps
6.5 km
(21,000 ft)
Temperature from oil/gas wells
SMU Corrected
Blackwell, Richards and Stepp, 2010. SECO Geothermal Report
How deep is the Barnett Shale?
• Barnett Shale is ~ 5,000 to 8,500 ft
• Ellenburger formation is below with
bottom depths to ~13,000 ft
• The hottest well recorded is
510°F @ 23,800 ft, east of Victoria, TX
Why Consider Geothermal Energy?
1. Geothermal is Reliable Power
2. Geothermal heat pumps Reduce Power Plant Loads
3. Geothermal energy promotes National Security
4. Geothermal energy is Environmentally Friendly
5. Geothermal equipment is Small in Footprint size
6. Geothermal supports Local Economic Development and Job Creation
7. Geothermal is Versatile (heat pumps to power plants)
8. Geothermal can Overlap with other resources
9. Geothermal Energy is Widely Available
10. Geothermal products increase U.S. Exports Market
United States leads in Geothermal Power Production
 Over 3,400 MW in US; 124 projects in development
 Over 12,000 MW world-wide; 700 projects in development
 76 countries use geothermal power!
Geothermal Energy Association, 2014 statistics and chart
Geothermal Energy is a long-term Solution
Geothermal Energy is available today
Afternoon Session will cover…
1. Geothermal Heat Pumps for homes and business
2. Conversion of oil and gas wells to geothermal production
3. Where the hottest resources are in Texas
4. Current available technologies for Geothermal and
Waste Heat to Power

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