Geothermal Energy

Have you heard about geothermal energy? A lot of people hearing the term automatically think of a place like Iceland, which is famous for utilizing this form of energy to heat and cool large towns and even huge segments of some cities.

So, what is it? Geothermal energy is exactly as it sounds - it is the thermal or heat energy created by the Earth. Perhaps you are aware that the Earth is a body that was once much hotter and which still has a liquid core. This core gives off a tremendous amount of heat, and this can lead to things such as hot springs, geysers, and ruptures in the "crust" of the earth that allow volcanic activities to occur.

Geothermal Energy
When speaking about the planet's heat in relation to geothermal energy, however, it is normally a relatively controlled release of heat that is being "tapped".

For instance, true energy production from a geothermal source comes about when a producer finds a place in which cool water is seeping into the Earth's crust, encountering areas of intense heat, and rapidly rising back up towards the surface as it is evaporated into steam.

This is the exact same principle that is used in other power plants and it usually spins a turbine and produces electricity. Interestingly enough, energy producers have three reliable systems for using geothermal vents or shafts. They can rely on the dry steam method, the flash steam systems, or a binary cycle system.

Any of these is going to be based firstly on the use of the heat far beneath the ground, and then will have to consider the amount of pressure behind it. If there is enough native pressure, it is usually going to be a dry steam system; otherwise a bit of processing has to happen in order to gain enough energy.

How reliable is geothermal energy? In the United States, there is a single facility in California that is meeting around 60 percent of the electrical demand along the entire North Coast region.

This means that it is an incredibly viable answer to the world's energy issues, but the only "glitch" with geothermal is the simple fact that it does have to be situated near an area where an appropriate "rift" or cleft is available in the crust. So, this means it is not going to be a single solution, but it certainly is one of the most viable and accessible around.

Geothermal energy is one of the least known type of alternative energy. Solar and wind energy seem to be the media darlings when we talk about renewable energy. Be it the radio or the television, these two kinds of renewable energy sources seem to be in the limelight all the time.

Very rarely would you hear the term ‘geothermal energy’ being mentioned with the same kind of respect and regards. There is no real explanation as to why this happens.

Global warming has become a household name today. Unfortunately, it has turned out to be an important political issue rather than being top priority. The availability of fossils fuels is not the same as it was few decades back. With such a danger looming large on mankind, it is obvious that renewable energy has gained a lot of mileage lately. However, it is important that we are aware of all options available to us in this aspect.

The United States of America is the largest geothermal energy producer in the world. This fact is pretty motivating. Eventhough this type of energy does not tend to get its share, stats say that it producer more energy as compared to wind and solar in the United States. Many people have a firm notion that geothermal has its own set of detractions. Well, so does wind and solar.

One of the highlights of the geothermal power plant is the fact that it can produce energy at a constant rate. This aspect is similar to that of a nuclear power plant. On the other hand, solar and wind energy are known to be intermitted type of power sources. However, this by no means states that wind and solar are not important. In order to fight global warming it is important that we have all the three of them working big time.

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Geothermal Energy
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In the past few years, United States has been witnessing a rise in geothermal energy.

Infact, the stats of 2009 indicate a rise in this energy by as much as 46% as compared to the states of 2008. Energy experts believe that geothermal source of energy has indeed got a lot of potential. Many of them also believe that if all goes well in the coming years, United States would produce energy from geothermal which is equivalent to the total consumption of 10 million people. This by all means would be an achievement worth appreciation.

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