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02/27/2014

R&D Funding Opportunity and EGS Field Observatory

Source:  Mack Kennedy

Two Major EGS Initiatives:

The Energy Department today announced two opportunities that will advance Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) in the U.S.: a $10 million funding opportunity announcement for research and development, and a notice of intent to issue a funding opportunity for an EGS field lab called the Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE).

To generate renewable power around the clock, EGS projects produce energy from intensely hot rocks buried thousands of feet below the surface. EGS systems initially lack the permeability or fluid saturation found in naturally occurring geothermal systems. The U.S. Geological Survey has estimated this vast, untapped thermal resource is between 100 and 500 gigawatts, enough to continuously power millions of American homes.

EGS R&D Funding Opportunity. This funding opportunity will support up to ten, three-year, collaborative research and development projects focused on applying innovative technologies to obtain and process high-precision data to better characterize and target potential EGS sites. EGS research advances the Department’s goal of proving next-generation clean energy technologies by driving down the costs of commercial-scale EGS projects to eventually produce cost-competitive, renewable electricity for American homes and businesses. In pursuit of this goal, the Department supports transformative research focused on removing obstacles to commercial EGS development to help industry better access, create, and sustain engineered reservoirs. Read the full FOA on Exchange at register today for an informative webinar.

FORGE Notice of Intent. The Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy is a first-of-its-kind effort that will promote transformative and high-risk/high-reward science and engineering focused on addressing critical barriers to EGS. FORGE will enable testing of new technologies and techniques, with a central focus on EGS optimization and validation. In addition, the new initiative will include a robust instrumentation, data collection, and data dissemination effort to capture and share in real-time a higher-fidelity picture of EGS creation and evolution processes than any prior geothermal demonstration in the world. It will also provide a collaborative and inclusive platform for advancement of EGS via participation from geothermal and other subsurface stakeholders. Finally, FORGE will allow for the highly-integrated comparison of technologies and tools in a controlled and well-characterized environment. Critical knowledge obtained at FORGE will inform the development of a methodology for reproducing large-scale, economically-sustainable heat exchange systems. The full text of this Notice of Intent is available on Exchange.

The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) accelerates development and facilitates deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and market-based solutions that strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality, and economic vitality. EERE supports innovative technologies that reduce both risk and costs of bringing geothermal power online. Learn more about the Department's efforts to develop geothermal energy.

Should you have any questions or need further information please contact:

Mack Kennedy @ x6451 or Karen Yamamoto @ x4161