Welcome to Hot Rock Energy
Hot Rock Energy otherwise known as Geothermal Energy is a term that is increasingly used to describe the process of extracting heat from rocks that have been heated by centuries of radiogenic activity several kilometers underground.
Australia "the lucky energy" country is one of the world's leaders in Hot Rock Energy research and development as a result of Australia's almost unique combination of abundant, relatively shallow, massive, horizontally fractured, richly radiogenic granite lenses covered by thick sedimentary layers acting as thermal insulators.
The potential rewards for Australia of having almost limitless, emission free, base load electricity were well recognised by our last Labor Government and several members of parliament who actively promoted funding for research and ongoing development. This recognition seems to have been lost with the current LNP government. Interest is being generated overseas and a 2007 paper, excerpted here, encapsulates many of the benefits that apply to both the USA and Australia.
Currently Australia has dozens of non-listed and ~ 7 ASX listed Hot Rock Energy / Geothermal companies and while the market cap of most of the ASX listed companies is below AUD$20m, a great deal of attention was and perhaps will again be focused on being the first company to bring a commercial development on-stream.
As Australia has hotter, shallower hot rocks than those in the USA and other countries and as the amount of energy available for "mining" is said to equal several hundred years of demand, it is reasonable to suggest that this new, very green, renewable energy source makes Australia a very lucky country.
Geoscience Australia’s Onshore Energy Security Program
The Geothermal Energy Project
"if a low estimate of 1% were taken, Australian geothermal sources could provide
26,000 years of energy supply."
The Hon Martin Ferguson Minister for Resources and Energy
Following the launch of the $50 million Geothermal Drilling Program
"The industry has a significant role to play in securing Australia's energy future"
"The potential of the geothermal industry in Australia is truly staggering"
The largest geothermal countries by installed global capacity (2010) are United States (29%), Philippines (18%) and Indonesia (11%).