Google and Fervo to develop next-generation geothermal technologies

Google and Fervo to develop next-generation geothermal technologies Google logo (source: flickr/ Robert Scoble, creative commons)
Carlo Cariaga 3 Dec 2021

The next-generation technologies that Google and Fervo are developing aim to make geothermal resources more productive

Earlier this year, we reported on the partnership between Google and Fervo Energy to use geothermal energy to produce carbon-free power to the grid that serves Google’s data centers and infrastructure throughout Nevada. In a release, Google Director of Energy Michael Terrell announced that the next-generation geothermal project is about to begin.

As part of their partnership, Google and Fervo Energy will jointly develop the use of AI and machine learning for geothermal energy production. By using fiber optic cables, Fervo can assess well performance by collecting real-time temperature and pressure data. This can help identify more productive zones. The project is still in its initial phase but has shown signs of early success.

With the help of AI and machine learning, Google and Fervo hopes to increase the productivity of geothermal wells and possibly tap into previously uneconomical geothermal energy sources. This will position geothermal energy to better serve energy demands and fill in the gaps of more intermittent renewable energy sources.

Terrell also highlighted how Google has made great strides reducing emissions from their data centers. Five of the global data centers of Google have attained almost 90% CO2-free energy in 2020 as announced by CEO Sundar Pichai during this year’s Earth Day.

Source: Google Cloud Official Blog