Small-scale geothermal plant technology explored for Indonesia’s remote areas

Geothermal low-temperature demonstration power plant in Lahendong an ORC prototype from Dürr Cyplan (source: GFZ)
Alexander Richter 20 Nov 2017

Indonesia increasingly sees a realistic use of smaller-scale geothermal power plants in Indonesia for remote areas in the country.

The Indonesian Agency for Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) is examining the application of small-scale geothermal power plant (PLTP) technology to remote areas in Indonesia .

“Actually, geothermal potential exists in many places in Indonesia, should be utilized for the needs of local communities, especially for border areas and remote areas,” said the Head of BPPT, Unggul Priyanto during a working visit to the Lahendong Geothermal Power Plant, or Lahendong Binary Plant, Tomohon, North Sulawesi two weeks ago.

Geothermal energy, said the Head of BPPT Unggul, became an option to replace the diesel energy that is still used in archipelago areas such as East Nusa Tenggara, West Nusa Tenggara, and in Maluku which is still inadequate.

“So far, small-scale geothermal power plants have never been built because they are considered uneconomical, while benefiting archipelagic and border communities,” he said. According to him, geothermal power plants can actually be more economical if all components are produced by companies in the country.

Currently, a small plant with 500 kW (0.5 MW) at the Lahendong plant is sufficient to supply basic electricity for 500 homes.

The joint operation of BPPT, Lahendong Geothermal and PT Pertamina Geothermal Energy (PGE) as the owner of this geothermal well area, he said, also has an important goal in order to improve the mastery of technology by the domestic industry.

Meanwhile, the Head of BPPT Energy Conversion Technology Center, Andhika Prastawa explained that geothermal binary cycle can increase the generation capacity.

Source: Inilah