Next-generation geothermal energy scaling worldwide at an unprecedented rate

Geothermal energy has become one of the fastest-growing non-mainstream clean energy technologies in the world, according to S&P Global Commodity Insights. While conventional methods for harnessing geothermal power have been limited by geographical and geological constraints, next-generation technologies have innovated to unlock virtually unlimited potential.

Over the past three years, the rise of start-up companies and substantial investments from major energy players underscores the rapid growth of next-gen geothermal. These advancements have raised over $630 million in funding and garnered support from leading global energy companies.

S&P’s infographic showcases various types of next-generation geothermal systems, including Advanced Geothermal Systems (AGS) like Eavor-Loop™, which utilize closed-loop systems to negate the need for hot aquifers. Other unconventional systems include Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) and Superhot Rock Systems (SHR).

These next-gen geothermal applications offer a range of benefits, including reliable energy storage, retrofitting of oil and gas wells, de-risking conventional geothermal attributes, and even coproduction of critical minerals.

While conventional hydrothermal geothermal systems have their limitations, delivering up to 16GWe (110GWth), the infographic describes next-generation geothermal as having virtually boundless potential.

Funding activity in the geothermal sector has seen significant growth in recent years. Venture capital investments (Series A and B funding) in global geothermal start-ups surged in 2021 and 2022, surpassing $200 million, while total funding (including seed, growth, debt, and crowd-funding) was well over $250 million.

Three of Eavor’s accomplishments made the overarching list of milestones for next-gen geothermal, including breaking ground in Geretsried for its first commercial project, the successful completion of the Eavor-Deep™ demonstration in New Mexico, and the contract with the U.S. Air Force to develop Eavor-Loop™ technology at the Joint Base San Antonio facility in Texas.

The surge in funding and advancements in next-generation geothermal technology highlight a promising trajectory for the industry. With increased investment and innovative solutions, the accessibility of scalable, reliable, and sustainable energy solutions like the Eavor-Loop™ gains greater potential to be implemented worldwide.

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