Geothermal power plants use water naturally heated by the earth to generate electricity. Geothermal energy is clean, renewable, and helps reduce carbon emissions related to power generation. But harsh conditions in geothermal wells cause many downhole pumps to fail prematurely. Typical geothermal well environments feature:
In 2018 and 2019, Novomet engineers used decades of knowledge and experience gained through deploying electrical submersible pumping (ESP) systems in harsh oil and gas wells to begin developing a cost-effective geothermal pumping system. This newly adapted geothermal ESP system featured heat-resistant, corrosion-resistant pumps and permanent magnet motors, which consume less electricity and produce less heat than downhole induction motors. Geothermal fields in Turkey provided the challenging conditions needed for Novomet to pilot its geothermal pumping systems. After initial development and lab simulations, Novomet engineers began installing and testing geothermal ESPs in wells across Turkey.
Novomet geothermal ESP systems performed well despite the harsh conditions. After seeing how successful the first systems were, Novomet began standardizing the design so it could be offered as a new line of pumps. Because of the massive volume of water required in geothermal operations, Novomet made additional design improvements, including high-volume, high-performance pumps and high-power permanent magnet motors. The result is the high-temperature, high-flow Geyser geothermal ESP.
In November 2019, three more Geyser geothermal ESPs were installed in Turkey. These systems have the ability to produce fluid at the rate of 10,000 m3/day (2.6 million gal/day) and they are powered by highly efficient 660-kW permanent magnet motors. These three systems are still running perfectly and bring the total count of Geyser ESP systems in operation in Turkey to 21. Despite geothermal fluid temperatures ranging from 155–195°C (311–383°F) Geyser systems have now been in operation for more than 380 days.
Because Novomet ESP designs are more efficient than competing systems, Geyser ESPs have also reduced the electricity required to pump a cubic meter of water in geothermal operations. The closest competing geothermal pump in Turkey uses 1.25 kWh per cubic meter of produced water, while Novomet Geyser systems consume only 0.9 kWh to lift the same volume of water. This reduces ongoing power consumption and costs by 28%, further supporting the goal of reducing carbon emissions.
Finding cost-effective, alternative energy sources remains a high priority for countries and companies alike in a joint effort to curb the increase in global average annual temperatures. Geyser ESP systems not only support sustainable geothermal energy initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but they also reduce energy consumption by lowering the power required to produce geothermal fluids. Novomet is an active supporter of the Paris Agreement and is proud to join other technology-forward companies in the hunt for alternative, green energy solutions.