DEEP begins geothermal power drilling in Sask.
DEEP has begun drilling as part of the final construction engineering for a five-megawatt power facility. Photo courtesy DEEP Earth Energy Production Corp.
DEEP Earth Energy Production Corp. has begun drilling on the first well for its geothermal power facility, located in southeastern Saskatchewan.
This drilling is required as part of the final construction engineering for a five-megawatt (MW) power facility. Final testing results from the drilling program will refine the assumptions made on the reservoir and effectively optimize the design parameters.
This will be Canada’s first geothermal facility and will be a transformative energy innovation for the Saskatchewan, DEEP said in a news release.
This drilling program is supported by a private placement from one of the founding partners of Epoch Energy Development, a geothermal company established to unlock heat energy in Canada. Epoch commercializes geothermal resources in partnership with municipalities, First Nations, resource companies, industry, and food growers. The investment is part of a strategic alliance between DEEP and Epoch.
“We are thrilled to announce these amazing steps forward for the DEEP project,” said Kirsten Marcia, president and CEO of DEEP. “This project will deploy conventional drilling and proven power generating technology that, when paired together, will introduce an entirely unique renewable power resource for the province of Saskatchewan.”
The company's long-term strategy is to build hundreds of megawatts of geothermal power facilities with a vision of a cleaner energy future for our province supported by SaskPower’s goal to reduce emissions from 2005 levels by 40 per cent by 2030. The proposed facility would generate renewable, zero emission, baseload power from a hot (120 C) aquifer. The produced electricity will be sold under an existing Power Purchase Agreement with SaskPower and will generate roughly the power required by 5,000 homes and offset about 27,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, equal to removing 7,400 cars off the roads annually.
DEEP awarded the drilling contract to Horizon Drilling with drilling operations beginning on Nov. 15, 2018. Frontier Project Solutions is providing engineering and project management services. The vertical well is designed for preliminary flow testing of the Winnipeg and Deadwood formations at a depth of 3,500 metres – at the base of the Williston Sedimentary Basin, making it the deepest well ever drilled in Saskatchewan.
“Geothermal is one of the most dependable sources of renewable energy globally and the only renewable that can produce reliable baseload power that runs 24/7,” Marcia said. “The facility will use Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) turbine technology to generate clean baseload power. This is well-established technology that pumps the geothermal fluid through heat exchangers, then transfers that heat to an organic fluid that vaporizes and drives a generator to produce clean electrical power.”
Innovation Saskatchewan provided $175,000 of funding support on the project. Natural Resources Canada provided $1,350,000 of funding to date on the project.
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