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Airflow Sciences Awarded $200k to Develop Geothermal Flow Measurement System
A geothermal well or reservoir contains water that heats up naturally underground. A two-phase mixture of steam and water is drawn up to the surface to rotate a steam-powered turbine that generates electricity. After this, water returns back into the reservoir to be reheated. Geothermal sites can have multiple reservoirs, all feeding the same turbine.
Real-time monitoring of each individual reservoir is something that the industry has been struggling to achieve for decades. As more and more geothermal sites have broken ground in the U.S., it is clear that more complete flow data could significantly reduce the cost of the geothermal megawatt-hour. Such data will help sites operate their turbines with greater efficiency, adjusting reservoir flows in real time based on which ones can deliver the highest thermodynamic potential.
Airflow's proposed system will give site managers the ability to know not only the flow rates supplied from each well, but more importantly, the vapor-to-liquid ratio in the supply lines. The result will be a cost-effective, two-phase flow meter with a complete temperature characterization for both the vapor and liquid phase of the fluid. The project also includes the development of a data acquisition protocol, which will automate data collection, furnishing a complete turn-key solution to geothermal providers.
At a time when the U.S. power industry is racing toward carbon-neutrality, Airflow Sciences is wellpoised to take on the technological challenges of the renewable sector. This effort is just one of many sustainable energy projects lining the company's portfolio, some funded by DOE and others funded by industry customers.
"Airflow Sciences is proud to be part of this DOE research focused on expanding geothermal energy utilization,"
About Airflow Sciences Corporation
Airflow Sciences Corporation is a fluid dynamics solutions company. They specialize in the design and optimization of equipment and processes involving flow, heat transfer, combustion, and mass transfer.
Learn more: http://www.airflowsciences.com
About the U.S. Department of Energy
The mission of the Energy Department is to ensure America's security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions. Learn more at energy.gov.
Rob Mudry, P.E.