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Title: The Nevada Play Fairway Project — Phase II: Initial Search for New Viable Geothermal Systems in the Great Basin Region, Western USA

Abstract

Estimates suggest that the Great Basin region is capable of producing much greater amounts of geothermal energy than the current ~600 MW from ~24 power plants. Because most of the geothermal resources in this region are blind, it is imperative that the favorable characteristics for geothermal activity be synthesized and methodologies developed to discover new robust systems. Nine geologic, geochemical, and geophysical parameters were synthesized to produce a new detailed geothermal play fairway map of a large transect across the Great Basin region (96,000 km2) from west-central to eastern Nevada. These parameters were grouped into subsets to delineate rankings for local permeability, regional permeability, and heat, which collectively defined geothermal play fairways (i.e., most likely locations for significant geothermal fluid flow). The primary objective of this work was to reduce the risks in geothermal exploration and thus facilitate discovery of commercial-grade, blind geothermal fields. Two dozen highly prospective areas, including both known systems and previously undiscovered potential blind systems, have been identified across the region for further analysis, of which several will be selected for detailed studies. Multiple techniques, including detailed geologic mapping, shallow temperature surveys, detailed gravity surveys, LiDAR, geochemical studies, seismic reflection analysis, and 3D modeling, are beingmore » employed in the detailed studies. Initial work on the detailed studies has begun and will proceed over the next year.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [1];  [2];  [3];  [4]
  1. Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology, University of Nevada, Reno
  2. Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology, University of Nevada, Reno; ATLAS Geosciences Inc.
  3. ATLAS Geosciences Inc.
  4. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology, University of Nevada, Reno
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1724099
Report Number(s):
DOE-UNR-06731-07
Journal ID: ISSN No. 0193-5933
DOE Contract Number:  
EE0006731
Resource Type:
Conference
Journal Name:
GRC Transactions
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 40; Conference: Geothermal Resources Council, Sacramento, CA; Journal ID: ISSN No. 0193-5933
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
15 GEOTHERMAL ENERGY; 58 GEOSCIENCES; Geothermal play fairway; geothermal exploration; Nevada; Great Basin; blind geothermal system; geothermal potential

Citation Formats

Faulds, James, Hinz, Nicholas, Coolbaugh, Mark, Shevenell, Lisa, and Siler, Drew. The Nevada Play Fairway Project — Phase II: Initial Search for New Viable Geothermal Systems in the Great Basin Region, Western USA. United States: N. p., 2016. Web.
Faulds, James, Hinz, Nicholas, Coolbaugh, Mark, Shevenell, Lisa, & Siler, Drew. The Nevada Play Fairway Project — Phase II: Initial Search for New Viable Geothermal Systems in the Great Basin Region, Western USA. United States.
Faulds, James, Hinz, Nicholas, Coolbaugh, Mark, Shevenell, Lisa, and Siler, Drew. 2016. "The Nevada Play Fairway Project — Phase II: Initial Search for New Viable Geothermal Systems in the Great Basin Region, Western USA". United States. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1724099.
@article{osti_1724099,
title = {The Nevada Play Fairway Project — Phase II: Initial Search for New Viable Geothermal Systems in the Great Basin Region, Western USA},
author = {Faulds, James and Hinz, Nicholas and Coolbaugh, Mark and Shevenell, Lisa and Siler, Drew},
abstractNote = {Estimates suggest that the Great Basin region is capable of producing much greater amounts of geothermal energy than the current ~600 MW from ~24 power plants. Because most of the geothermal resources in this region are blind, it is imperative that the favorable characteristics for geothermal activity be synthesized and methodologies developed to discover new robust systems. Nine geologic, geochemical, and geophysical parameters were synthesized to produce a new detailed geothermal play fairway map of a large transect across the Great Basin region (96,000 km2) from west-central to eastern Nevada. These parameters were grouped into subsets to delineate rankings for local permeability, regional permeability, and heat, which collectively defined geothermal play fairways (i.e., most likely locations for significant geothermal fluid flow). The primary objective of this work was to reduce the risks in geothermal exploration and thus facilitate discovery of commercial-grade, blind geothermal fields. Two dozen highly prospective areas, including both known systems and previously undiscovered potential blind systems, have been identified across the region for further analysis, of which several will be selected for detailed studies. Multiple techniques, including detailed geologic mapping, shallow temperature surveys, detailed gravity surveys, LiDAR, geochemical studies, seismic reflection analysis, and 3D modeling, are being employed in the detailed studies. Initial work on the detailed studies has begun and will proceed over the next year.},
doi = {},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/1724099}, journal = {GRC Transactions},
issn = {No. 0193-5933},
number = ,
volume = 40,
place = {United States},
year = {2016},
month = {10}
}

Conference:
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