Description: New York State`s geothermal energy potential was evaluated based on a new resource assessment performed by the State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY-Buffalo) and currently commercial technologies, many of which have become available since New York`s potential was last evaluated. General background on geothermal energy and technologies was provided. A life-cycle cost analysis was performed to evaluate the economics of using geothermal energy to generate electricity in upstate New York. A conventional rankine cycle, binary power system was selected for the economic evaluation, based on SUNY-Buffalo`s resource assessment. Binary power systems are the most technologically suitable for upstate New York`s resources and have the added advantage of being environmentally attractive. Many of the potential environmental impacts associated with geothermal energy are not an issue in binary systems because the geothermal fluids are contained in a closed-loop and used solely to heat a working fluid that is then used to generate the electricity Three power plant sizes were selected based on geologic data supplied by SUNY-Buffalo. The hypothetical power plants were designed as 5 MW modular units and sized at 5 MW, 10 MW and 15 MW. The life-cycle cost analysis suggested that geothermal electricity in upstate New York, using currently commercial technology, will probably cost between 14 and 18 cents per kilowatt-hour.
Date: July 25, 1996
Creator: Manger, K. C.
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Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department