Premier proposes a Geothermal energy storage project

Bakersfield-based Premier Resource Management LLC (Premier) is proposing a geothermal energy storage project in Antelope Hills in Kern County, California. The system will gather energy from the sunlight using an array of parabolic mirrors. This will heat the groundwater when sunlight is available and store the energy in an underground reservoir to be used when power is needed.

Premier is part of the initiative launched by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to explore novel means of capturing excess energy production using geothermal reservoirs, with a focus on hybridizing solar power with geothermal reservoir thermal energy storage.

Through this partnership, Premier is working with federal scientists to develop the technology towards an initial 100-USD demonstration project set to debut no sooner than 2025. The demonstration project is sought to produce 10 MW of electrical power for five hours every night.

The company is planning to construct 60-acre solar arrays and a series of tanks for separating and cleaning the water. Energy will be stored in 37 geothermal wells. The system would then be connected to a nearby substation and power transmission lines owned by Pacific Gas and Electric Co.

A unique characteristic of the project in Western Kern is that it aims to utilize the infrastructure of a depleted oil and gas reservoir. If the concept can be expanded across oil fields in California, the technology can help supply a substantial share of the power demand of the state during peak demand.

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