“Dry” Geothermal Energy Exploitation

GTherm, the owner of the patent, is negotiating with Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) to develop a 12 MW pilot project.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Within ICE's strategy to develop clean electricity sources, since October 2010 it is negotiating a pilot project to generate electricity by harnessing geothermal energy in the subsoil, a rich resource in Costa Rica.

The system which U.S. company GTherm owns and that would be the one used in ICE´s pilot project, has a great advantage over traditional geothermal plants (EGS - Enhanced Geothermal Systems): they do not need to use large quantities of water.

The SWEGS System (Single-Well Engineered Geothermal System) by GTherm is a closed loop system that requires no water reservoir, the infrastructure stays mostly underground having a low visual effect and the system generates no pollution, producing clean, renewable and sustainable energy.

Carlos Graffigna, president and partner of the firm in Costa Rica, said that negotiations are at an advanced stage, and there is great enthusiasm by ICE for the development of the pilot project. He stressed that Costa Rica is the starting point for expanding the concept of "dry geothermal power" to other countries in the region.

Graffigna also announced the arrival of a delegation of experts from the United States for the presentation of the company and its technology at the National Energy Congress organized by the Chamber of Industry, scheduled for Thursday, February 17.

More on this topic

Nicaragua: $103 Million for Renewable Energy

September 2016

Using an IADB loan electrical substations will be built and a technical feasibility study made for exploitation of the geothermal potential in the field of Cosigüina.

From a statement issued by the Inter-American Development Bank:

Nicaragua will be expanding its levels of renewable energy generation and improving the electricity transmission system through a US $103.4 million financing project from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

Costa Rica: $500 million for Geothermal Plant

December 2015

With a loan from the IDB it is hoped that the state power geothermal projects Pailas Borinquen I and II will be completed and improvements made to the transfer line from Guanacaste and its connection to Central America.

The plan by the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) is to invest the proceeds of the loan between 2017 and 2025, starting with projects under development in Guanacaste, Borinquen Pailas I and II.

Geothermal Project Delayed Due to Lack of Drills

July 2014

The construction of the Borinquen 55MW geothermal plant will not begin until 2018 because the state run electricity company in Costa Rica only has three drilling rigs.

An article on Nacion.com includes a video which reports that the Borinquen project will not start until 2018 because the drills owned by the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) are being used for other projects.

Costa Rica: Geothermal Energy in National Parks

December 2013

Prohibition of geothermal power generation in protected areas would be lifted by the two presidential candidates who are leading the polls.

Johnny Araya of the National Liberation Party (PLN by its initials in Spanish) and José María Villalta from the Broad Front (Frente Amplio) party, said they would allow the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) to explore geothermal energy in the Rincón de la Vieja National Park in Guanacaste.

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