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production of electricity from geothermal energy click to hear : production of electricity from geothermal energy

Hot water contained in the ground near a volcano, geyser or thermal source is piped to the surface by drilling to extract steam and produce electricity.
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generator production well geothermal field confined aquifer lower confining bed magma chamber upper confining bed separator turbine injection well steam water water-steam mix high-tension electricity transmission voltage increase cooling tower condenser

generator click to hear : generator

Turbine-powered rotating machine that converts mechanical energy into electric energy to direct it toward a transmission network.

production well click to hear : production well

Borehole dug into the ground to allow the hot water contained in the aquifer to be pumped to produce electricity.

geothermal field click to hear : geothermal field

Area of Earth’s crust where a pocket of hot confined water is close enough to the surface to be exploited.

confined aquifer click to hear : confined aquifer

Layer of porous sedimentary rock between two impermeable layers where water accumulates at a temperature between 150°C and 400°C.

lower confining bed click to hear : lower confining bed

Layer of impermeable rock that transmits heat from the magma chamber to the aquifer.

magma chamber click to hear : magma chamber

Pocket of magma (molten rock emerging from Earth’s crust) that constitutes a heat source; it transmits its thermal energy to water.

upper confining bed click to hear : upper confining bed

Layer of impermeable rock that covers the confined aquifer.

separator click to hear : separator

Device that separates water from steam, which it recovers to operate the turbine; the water is reinjected into the aquifer.

turbine click to hear : turbine

Steam-powered machine whose wheel transmits mechanical energy to the generator and causes it to rotate.

injection well click to hear : injection well

Borehole that is drilled into the ground to return water to the aquifer, where it is reheated after its heat has been extracted.

steam click to hear : steam

Gaseous state of water; steam pressure operates the turbine.

water click to hear : water

Liquid made up of hydrogen and oxygen that becomes steam at 100°C; the water transfers Earth’s internal heat.

water-steam mix click to hear : water-steam mix

Hot water extracted from the aquifer; as it rises to the surface, it is partially turned into steam.

high-tension electricity transmission click to hear : high-tension electricity transmission

Using high-voltage lines to transmit electricity over long distances reduces the strength of the current and, as a result, energy losses.

voltage increase click to hear : voltage increase

At the outlet end of the power plant, the transformer increases the voltage; this reduces energy losses during transmission over long distances.

cooling tower click to hear : cooling tower

Device that cools the condenser’s hot water on contact with the air; some of the water evaporates and the rest is reinjected into the condenser and the aquifer.

condenser click to hear : condenser

Circuit that cools the steam from the turbine and condenses it into water.