Geothermal energy is a naturally occurring, renewable energy source that can be used for both heating and electrical production. That’s all there is to it.
How do you generate geothermal energy?
Geothermal power stations come in three primary varieties:
- Dry steam – For many years, these plants have been utilized. They work with hydrothermal liquids, which are nearly steam-hot. The generator is powered by the stream and generates electricity. The condensed steam is returned to the reservoir as cool water, ready for further heating. The commercial geothermal tax credit offers businesses additional refunds and incentives, reducing the cost of geothermal investments.
- Flash steam – These days, these are the most prevalent kinds of geothermal plants. They function by applying high pressure to heated fluids, which makes the fluid to flash—or turn—into vapor very quickly. A turbine is pushed by the hot steam to produce power.
- Binary cycle – The only power plant built to produce geothermal energy at a lower temperature is this one. This indicates that these plants are more suited for placement anywhere in the planet, not just in regions with exceptionally high subterranean temperatures. Low-temperature fluids interchange with another fluid (also known as a binary fluid) using a heater. The extra fluid turns into steam because it has a lower boiling point than water. This then powers a turbine, just like the other plants, which in turn powers a generator to produce electricity.
What is the use of geothermal energy?
Countries located close to tectonic plates, where the earth’s surface (plates) shift frequently, heavily utilize geothermal energy. These nations—New Zealand, Iceland, and Italy—have the warmest subterranean temperatures.
That being said, geothermal energy is still used in the UK. The ability to use low boiling point technology, such as binary cycle plants, allows us to harness the power beneath the surface of the earth in various parts of the world.
And because geothermal energy never shuts off, ground-source heat pumps are a frequent way that we use it in the UK. In the UK, these are used to power the heating and air conditioning systems in residential and commercial buildings.
Instead of burning gas or oil to generate energy, a heat pump transfers heat from one location to another. Because these kinds of devices are becoming more inexpensive, their use is growing in popularity. Companies using this kind of technology are making it possible for us to reach our goal of net zero.
How can geothermal energy be used by businesses?
Since geothermal energy makes up such a minor portion of the UK energy supply, installing geothermal heat pumps on their own is the primary way for businesses to utilize geothermal energy.
Purchasing a commercial heat pump could reduce your carbon footprint, lower your energy costs for your company, and increase your appeal to eco-aware clients.
Are there any drawbacks for companies using geothermal energy?
It’s costly to install: Heat pumps can cost anywhere from £4,000 to £35,000, depending on the type of system installed and the size and scope of your company. This can be a significant upfront expense for business owners.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution – because of the intricacy of heat pumps, commercial buildings cannot be fitted with a standard fitting. Since each business has distinct heating and cooling requirements, the system will be exclusive to that establishment. This implies that a custom solution utilizing a ground source heat pump or an air heat pump is required.
You might need planning permission – If you install a heat pump unit that exceeds 0.6 cubic meters, you might need permission to build the infrastructure. And getting planning permission can be a time-consuming process. But, if you do get permission, the rewards will likely pay off in the long run once you pay off your initial investment.
You might not be able to relocate – Once a custom heat pump is installed, the ground-based infrastructure is created. Therefore, you will probably have to leave it behind if you relocate. This implies that it’s just truly appropriate if you are certain that your company won’t relocate.