Assessment of Geothermal Resource Potential at a High-Priority Area on the Utah Testing and Training Range–South (UTTR–S) [electronic resource]
- Washington, D.C : United States. Dept. of Energy. Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy ; Oak Ridge, Tenn. : distributed by the Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Dept. of Energy, 2012
- Idaho National Laboratory. Researcher
- United States. Dept. of Energy. Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. Sponsor
- United States. Dept. of Energy. Office of Scientific and Technical Information. Distributor
- Richard P. Smith, PhD., PG Author
- Robert P. Breckenridge, PhD. Author
- Thomas R. Wood, PhD. Author
- Field investigations conducted during 2011 support and expand the conclusion of the original Preliminary Report that discovery of a viable geothermal system is possible in the northwestern part of the Utah Testing and Training Range-South (UTTR-S), referred to henceforth as Focus Area 1. The investigations defined the southward extent of the Wendover graben into and near Focus Area 1, enhanced the understanding of subsurface conditions, and focused further geothermal exploration efforts towards the northwestern-most part of Focus Area 1. Specifically, the detailed gravity survey shows that the Wendover graben, first defined by Cook et al. (1964) for areas north of Interstate Highway 80, extends and deepens southwest-ward to the northwest corner of Focus Area 1. At its deepest point, the intersection with a northwest-trending graben there is favorable for enhanced permeability associated with intersecting faults. Processing and modeling of the gravity data collected during 2011 provide a good understanding of graben depth and distribution of faults bounding the graben and has focused the interest area of the study. Down-hole logging of temperatures in wells made available near the Intrepid, Inc., evaporation ponds, just north of Focus Area 1, provide a good understanding of the variability of thermal gradients in that area and corroborate the more extensive temperature data reported by Turk (1973) for the depth range of 300-500 m. Moderate temperature gradients in the northern part of the Intrepid area increase to much higher gradients and bottom-hole temperatures southeastward, towards graben-bounding faults, suggesting upwelling geothermal waters along those faults. Water sampling, analysis, and temperature measurements of Blue Lakes and Mosquito Willey's springs, on the western boundary of Focus Area 1, also show elevated temperatures along the graben-bounding fault system. In addition, water chemistry suggests origin of those waters in limestone rocks beneath the graben in areas with temperatures as high as 140 C (284 F). In conclusion, all of the field data collected during 2011 and documented in the Appendices of this report indicate that there is reasonable potential for a viable geothermal resource along faults that bound the Wendover graben. Prospects for a system capable of binary electrical generation are especially good, and the possibility of a flash steam system is also within reason. The next steps should focus on securing the necessary funding for detailed geophysical surveys and for drilling a set of temperature gradient wells to further evaluate the resource, and to focus deep exploration efforts in the most promising areas.
- Geophysical Surveys.
- Geothermal Exploration.
- Geothermal Resources.
- Geothermal Systems.
- Gravity Surveys.
- Steam Systems.
- Temperature Gradients.
- Temperature Measurement.
- Water Chemistry.
- Geothermal Energy.
- Dugway Proving Grounds
- Geothermal Resource Potential
- Hill Air Force Base
- Utah Testing And Training Range
- Publication date
- Published through SciTech Connect.
- Richard P. Smith, PhD., PG; Robert P. Breckenridge, PhD.; Thomas R. Wood, PhD.
- Funding Information