GEOTHERMAL ENERGY

 

 

The heat of the Earth is a natural energy source that has always stared after the history of our planet.

How does geothermal energy works? Soil temperature increases as you descend deeper: on average every 100 meters the temperature of rocks increases of 3 degrees


In some particular areas, this natural characteristic of our planet becomes more marked with ground temperatures slightly higher than the average, for example because of volcanic or tectonic activity.


In these hot spots, energy can also be easily recovered in shallow, through geothermal. The vapors coming from the water sources in the subsoil are conveyed towards appropriate turbines used for the production of electricity. The heat generated by the steam can also be reused for heating, greenhouse cultivation and even spas



The main applications of natural steam coming from underground are:

  • generation of electric energy through wheels;
  • geothermal heat is channelled in a piping system in order to serve local activities of district heating.

Cold water is put at depth to power up the production of water vapor from the subsoil and keep it constant (without any fluctuations or peaks). In this way the turbine plant can operate at its full capacity and produce heat continuously.


"Mini-geothermal" is the realization of small home systems that can use the heat in the ground for Heating and Cooling works into the apartments. These plants can be made almost everywhere.

Geothermal plants are technical building devices build up to transform homes in warm places during the winter and cool places during the summer, without using conventional heating or air conditioning.

A mini geothermal system uses drills in the homes subsoil for harnessing the natural heat of the ground. As we already know the warmth of the earth increases with depth and it is always constant throughout the year. The drills are connected to a heat pump and to the hydraulic system to extract the heat or the cool, depending on the needs. Generally, the drills come in depths from 5 meters to 100 meters underground depending on the size of the plant. Then, through a distribution system (underfloor heating systems, radiant panels, air vents, etc.) the "low temperature" heat or the cool will be distributed within the environment.

The geothermal systems are already a reality in many European countries. A heating system or air conditioning system allows considerable savings on your gas bill and produce less pollution.


The amortization of the initial expenditure.


Like all investments in renewable energy a geothermal system requires a very long amortization period concerning the initial expenditure, depending on the size of the plant itself. In the case of the air conditioning or natural cooling systems, the amortization period is shorter.

The installation of geothermal systems for domestic heating or cooling is particularly suitable for modern buildings, thereby without excluding applications for older buildings.

The diffusion of geothermal systems has some obvious economic benefits:

  • it reduces the costs (in the bill) for property owners
  • it reduces oil or gas import in our country
  • it improves air quality such as our environment quality by reducing the impact on health (less private health care costs, lower health care public spending and taxes)
  • the lower CO2 pollution level is consistent with the Kyoto Protocol

These are some of the advantages of renewable resources. Geothermal plants, together with all the other building devices, represent a tangible and immediate answer. (source: ecoage.com)