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The future of Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) – does it lie in China?

AltaRock Energy signing EGS cooperation agreement in China (source: AltaRock)
Alexander Richter 1 Nov 2018

Seeing the future of EGS in China, AltaRock Energy has signed a partnership agreement to cooperate on moving from traditional EGS, to SuperHot and ultimately to directed-energy drilling.

Following up on discussions with Aaron Mandell, co-founder and CEO of AltaRock on the future of EGS, published last week, he also described that a key element to deploying the deep geothermal development is to do so in China.

With China as the leading user of coal, to have a meaningful impact on decarbonizing the grid, China needs to play a major role. This is the reason why AltaRock Energy entered into a cooperative agreement with China Coal, the world’s largest coal power company, to begin replacing coal-fired generation with geothermal.

Under this U.S.-China partnership, we have agreed to cooperate on the development of technology that will be used to repurpose coal facilities for advanced geothermal. The first part of this initiative will involve an analysis of the geothermal resources in the areas where coal plants are operating (feasibility, cost, risk assessment, etc) and then quickly move to a commercial demonstration.

AltaRock will supply technology and provide support services through AltaRock China, an entity that has been established to service the local Chinese geothermal market. As we progress our technology strategy from traditional EGS, to SuperHot and ultimately to directed-energy drilling, this partnership will ensure there is active cooperation between the U.S. and China and that all our development efforts are done with an eye towards ultimately commercializing the technology in China. “AltaRock views this as critical to the longterm success of geothermal.”, so Aaron Mandell.