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U.S. DOE announces $18.8m funding opp. for low-temp geothermal R&D

Website of the DOE's Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO) - screenshot
Carlo Cariaga 5 Feb 2020

The U.S. Department of Energy is offering funding for research projects geared towards low-temperature geothermal utilisation and discovery of hidden hydrothermal systems.

The U.S Department of Energy has announced an $18.8 million funding that will go towards six innovative research and development initiatives aimed towards two topic areas:

  1. Exploration RD&D: Hidden Geothermal Systems in the Basin and Range; and
  2. Advanced Energy Storage Initiative (AESI): Bi-directional Energy Storage Using Low-Temperature Geothermal Applications

The first topic aims to build on the success of the Geothermal Technologies Office’s Play Fairway Analysis (PFA) initiative. The PFA technique is a method for discovering hidden hydrothermal systems in the Basin & Range region of the western U.S using known geologic factors associated with geothermal systems.

By reducing the uncertainty of discovering geothermal systems in such settings, development and investment in the area can become more attractive.

The second topic aims to enhance the resilience of energy systems through the use of Reservoir Thermal Energy Storage (RTES) technology particularly in low-temperature geothermal systems. Deep-Direct Use (DDU) for space heating is being considered as the best application of this technolgoy, as excess thermal energy during summer could be stored as a reserve for winter heating.

Interested applicants may submit a letter of intent until February 28, 2020, 5 PM. Only those who have submitted the letter will be eligible for full applications, which will be accepted until April 6, 2020, 5 PM.

Source: U.S. Department of Energy