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Transcript of Geothermal Energy
A massive energy source is available
No combustion involved = most "green" renewable energy
Tax cuts are available to people who use this energy
lifetime cots for this energy are lower than all others
first installation prices are very high
to get its full potential, big wells need to be dug into the earth
the plants and systems need a lot of gentle care/ maintenance
there is only a portion of the earth where this energy can be very useable
Cannot be used in dense city areas
How it Works
Renewable or Non-Renewable
Geothermal energy is renewable!
It is renewable because the earth is always producing thermal energy in an unlimited fashion ever since the beginning of the earth.
"The amount of heat within 10,000 meters (about 33,000 feet) of Earth's surface contains 50,000 times more energy than all the oil and natural gas resources in the world."
Geothermal energy can be used to make energy to heat your home through heated air.
It can also be used to create electricity.
Cold water is run through the ground which then becomes heated by the earth's thermal energy.
Then, it goes into a system where the hot water is converted into steam which then turns a turbine in an electric generator to create energy.
Cost for an Average System
Installation cost: $30,000 -- $11,000 (tax credit) = $19,000
Annual costs: $3945 (old system) -- $2076 (geo) = $1869 saved
Payback period: $19,000 / $1869 = 10.17 years
Monthly geothermal costs: $173 (power) + $132 (loan) = $305
To capture the energy, pipes are put into the ground about 4-6 feet in depth and are filled with a liquid.
In the pipe, it is sometimes water, and sometimes a special fluid called glycol.
The liquid then gets run through the pipes in the ground, gets heated, then returns to the system.
Next, the warm liquid heats water surrounding a radiator and then a fan draws out heated air from the radiator.
The storage for this energy is in the earth. Since the earth is very large has has a lot of thermal enegy, it is the best place to store that energy.
The only waste of geothermal energy are the filters that are put in to help keep the contaminants out of the air.
Use in Population
This energy resource is not widely used because it costs a lot to purchase and can only be used in certain areas.
In the future it will be more available when prices drop.
Places it Performs Best
This energy performs best in California and Hawaii because those places are the most heated near the surface.
This means that there is even more thermal energy available to be harnessed and more production can be made.