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Title: Structural Inventory of Great Basin Geothermal Systems and Definition of Favorable Structural Settings

Over the course of the entire project, field visits were made to 117 geothermal systems in the Great Basin region. Major field excursions, incorporating visits to large groups of systems, were conducted in western Nevada, central Nevada, northwestern Nevada, northeastern Nevada, east‐central Nevada, eastern California, southern Oregon, and western Utah. For example, field excursions to the following areas included visits of multiple geothermal systems: - Northwestern Nevada: Baltazor Hot Spring, Blue Mountain, Bog Hot Spring, Dyke Hot Springs, Howard Hot Spring, MacFarlane Hot Spring, McGee Mountain, and Pinto Hot Springs in northwest Nevada. - North‐central to northeastern Nevada: Beowawe, Crescent Valley (Hot Springs Point), Dann Ranch (Hand‐me‐Down Hot Springs), Golconda, and Pumpernickel Valley (Tipton Hot Springs) in north‐central to northeast Nevada. - Eastern Nevada: Ash Springs, Chimney Hot Spring, Duckwater, Hiko Hot Spring, Hot Creek Butte, Iverson Spring, Moon River Hot Spring, Moorman Spring, Railroad Valley, and Williams Hot Spring in eastern Nevada. - Southwestern Nevada‐eastern California: Walley’s Hot Spring, Antelope Valley, Fales Hot Springs, Buckeye Hot Springs, Travertine Hot Springs, Teels Marsh, Rhodes Marsh, Columbus Marsh, Alum‐Silver Peak, Fish Lake Valley, Gabbs Valley, Wild Rose, Rawhide‐ Wedell Hot Springs, Alkali Hot Springs, and Baileys/Hicks/Burrell Hot Springs. - Southern Oregon:more » Alvord Hot Spring, Antelope Hot Spring‐Hart Mountain, Borax Lake, Crump Geyser, and Mickey Hot Spring in southern Oregon. - Western Utah: Newcastle, Veyo Hot Spring, Dixie Hot Spring, Thermo, Roosevelt, Cove Fort, Red Hill Hot Spring, Joseph Hot Spring, Hatton Hot Spring, and Abraham‐Baker Hot Springs. Structural controls of 426 geothermal systems were analyzed with literature research, air photos, google‐Earth imagery, and/or field reviews (Figures 1 and 2). Of the systems analyzed, we were able to determine the structural settings of more than 240 sites. However, we found that many “systems” consisted of little more than a warm or hot well in the central part of a basin. Such “systems” were difficult to evaluate in terms of structural setting in areas lacking in geophysical data. Developed database for structural catalogue in a master spreadsheet. Data components include structural setting, primary fault orientation, presence or absence of Quaternary faulting, reservoir lithology, geothermometry, presence or absence of recent magmatism, and distinguishing blind systems from those that have surface expressions. Reviewed site locations for all 426 geothermal systems– Confirmed and/or relocated spring and geothermal sites based on imagery, maps, and other information for master database. Many systems were mislocated in the original database. In addition, some systems that included several separate springs spread over large areas were divided into two or more distinct systems. Further, all hot wells were assigned names based on their location to facilitate subsequent analyses. We catalogued systems into the following eight major groups, based on the dominant pattern of faulting (Figure 1): - Major normal fault segments (i.e., near displacement maxima). - Fault bends. - Fault terminations or tips. - Step‐overs or relay ramps in normal faults. - Fault intersections. - Accommodation zones (i.e., belts of intermeshing oppositely dipping normal faults), - Displacement transfer zones whereby strike‐slip faults terminate in arrays of normal faults. - Transtensional pull‐aparts. These settings form a hierarchal pattern with respect to fault complexity. - Major normal faults and fault bends are the simplest. - Fault terminations are typically more complex than mid‐segments, as faults commonly break up into multiple strands or horsetail near their ends. - A fault intersection is generally more complex, as it generally contains both multiple fault strands and can include discrete di...« less
Publication Date:
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Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
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Data Type:
Numeric Data
Research Org:
DOE Geothermal Data Repository; University of Nevada Reno
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Geothermal Technologies Office (EE-4G)
Contributing Orgs:
University of Nevada Reno
Country of Publication:
United States
15 Geothermal Energy geothermal; Quaternary Faults; Structural Controls; Blind Geothermal Systems; Temperature; Geothermometry