What is geothermal energy? Geothermal energy means heat energy, which has high temperature and pressure and stored underground in magma.
The word meaning of geothermal energy is; “geo” means earth or something that belongs to the earth. “Thermal” means heat, temperature. “Geothermal” means heat energy that belongs to the earth.
Geothermal energy has an important place among the renewable energy sources. It is also among the clean energy sources. Because it does not create any pollution and it is achieved from natural energy source heat energy.
Geothermal sources can renew themselves and they do not run out. Because there is no resource consumption for the geothermal energy.
How Does Geothermal Energy Form?
Geothermal energy, which is among the sources that are used for the electricity generation with renewable energy forms in the following way;
Water, which reaches to the earth in the form of rain and snow, reaches the rocks, that are heated with the magma by seizing from the cracks. The water, which reaches the heated rocks, gets hot.
The heated water reaches back to the surface through the different volcanoes and geysers in the different parts of the world. This water, which reaches the surface, is usually around 150 degrees.
This hot water, which reaches the surface, is converted to electricity with the help of some steam turbines. And this is called geothermal energy.
What Are the Usage Areas of Geothermal Energy (Heat Energy)?
The main uses of geothermal energy are;
- It is used to achieve heavy water with hydrogen sulfide,
- It is used for the drying of products and foods such as wood, tree, timber, and fish,
- It is used to obtain aluminum with Bayer’s method,
- It is used for quick drying of foods in the canning industry,
- It is used in salt and sugar production,
- It is used to obtain clean and drinkable water,
- It is used to dry the cement,
- It is used to heat the greenhouses in agriculture,
- It is used for spa treatments,
- It is used for electricity generation.
Geothermal Energy in the World
Geothermal sources are used fairly extensively in the available areas. The main use areas are electricity generation with geothermal plants and spa treatments.
World’s Largest Geothermal Energy Plants
- The Geysers Geothermal Plant is located in California in the USA and it has a total installed capacity of 1.517MW.
- Larderello Geothermal Plant is located in Tuscany in Italy and it has a total installed capacity of 769MW.
- Cerro Prieto Geothermal Plant is located in Mexico and it has a total installed capacity of 720MW.
- Makban Geothermal Plant is located in the Philippines and it has a total installed capacity of 458MW.
- CalEnergy Generation’s Salton Sea Geothermal Plant is located in California in the USA and it has a total installed capacity of 340MW.
Geothermal energy, which has an important place among the renewable energy sources, should be more widespread in all around the world.
In case it will be used efficiently, this resource, which is completely free and sustainable, can prevent external energy dependency in many developing countries. Electricity generation with natural gases should be stopped and electricity needs of developing countries should be met with the natural and renewable resources.