Canada’s Eavor Technologies has begun construction of its demonstration facility (Eavor-Lite™). The wells for this facility began drilling earlier this month. These wells, anticipated to be drilled and connected within two months, are the first step in the construction of the $10 million Eavor-Lite facility - the world’s first truly closed-loop geothermal system.
Courtesy of Eavor
Located near Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, Eavor-Lite will demonstrate and showcase Eavor’s unique and proprietary design elements at a near commercial scale.
The demonstration of its technology at this scale will provide the validation needed to de-risk Eavor’s currently identified commercial opportunities at home and around the world. Several national and international corporate, technical and governmental delegations are making arrangements to visit the demonstration site during its construction and to meet with Eavor’s technical team and partners.
The closed-loop system consists of a large U-tube shaped well at 2.4km depth, with several kilometers of multilateral horizontal wellbores, and a pipeline connecting the sites on surface. Two drilling rigs are operated simultaneously from both sites and used to intersect the multilateral wellbores at depth.
Water is circulated in the inlet well, through the parallel wellbores to extract heat by conductive heat transfer with the rock, and rises up the outlet wellbore at a higher temperature. The density difference between the inlet well and outlet well creates a thermosiphon which completely drives the flow, without any pumping power.
The test facility is designed to measure all relevant performance data and enable optimization of the system. Post completion, the Eavor-Lite facility will continue to provide an ongoing test facility for advanced operating fluids and other processes currently under development.
Eavor’s new solution (Eavor-Loop™) will be the world’s first truly scalable form of green baseload power. Eavor achieves this by mitigating or eliminating many of the issues that have hindered the expansion of traditional geothermal solutions.
As a completely closed-loop system, there is no fracking, no GHG emissions (unlike some geothermal projects), no earthquake risk, no water use, no produced brine or solids, and no aquifer contamination. Eavor’s system circulates a benign working fluid which is isolated from the environment in a closed circuit, much like a massive subsurface version of a traditional radiator. It simply collects heat from the natural geothermal gradient of the Earth, at common rock temperatures.
Eavor-Loop is not intermittent, but instead produces a reliable baseload power. Unlike traditional geothermal, it is not reliant on volcanic-like temperatures in combination with highly permeable aquifers. Eavor™ makes the use of geothermal energy truly scalable and eliminates the major sources of exploratory cost and risk.