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SMU geothermal conference
Date:10/28/2009

GREEN GEOTHERMAL TECHNOLOGY PIGGYBACKS ON OIL & GAS PRODUCTION

SMU's renowned Geothermal Laboratory will share the blueprint for generating geothermal electricity from waste water produced by oil and gas wells at a conference on the Dallas campus Nov. 3-4. Late registration is available at check-in Nov. 3.

Volatile petroleum prices, federal tax incentives and technology developments are feeding a surge of interest in co-production of geothermal energy from oil and gas wells. The SMU conference is designed to bring business and landowners together with technical, operational and financial players to help incubate geothermal energy ventures.

The oil crisis of the 1970s fed intense interest in geothermal energy, but the technology available at the time required high heat sources, like California's Geysers Field, or costly exploration work to find and reach hot rock buried deep beneath the earth. Interest in the large capital investment required of old-school geothermal production waned when the price of oil came back down.

But new technology developed in association with SMU research provides the capability to produce electricity using much lower water temperatures and smaller, less expensive, turbines that can easily be transported to locations. The technology delivers a cost-effective, environment-friendly alternative energy not dependent on weather variables.

GEOTHERMAL ELECTRICITY FROM OIL & GAS WELLS: HOW DOES IT WORK?

Hot waste water is an ordinary byproduct of many oil and gas wells a costly nuisance when producers have to dispose of it. But circulating the waste water through a specially designed binary power plant installed at the wellhead can drive a turbine to generate electricity. SMU studies indicate there are thousands of oil and gas wells in Texas that could be economical for geothermal development.

Running the binary pump concurrently with oil and gas production of
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Contact: Kim Cobb
214-768-7654
Southern Methodist University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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