Determining Geothermal Resources in Three Texas Counties
Cover photo: A view of the Milky Way over Phoinix Ranch in Jim Wells and Live Oak counties. ©2022 Rey Garza and Jim Quisenberry
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Keywords

bottom-hole temperature
electricity
geothermal resource
heat flow
thermal conductivity
10 kilometers temperatures
radiogenic heat production
Texas
Crockett County
Webb County
Jackson County

How to Cite

Batir, J., & Richards, M. (2022). Determining Geothermal Resources in Three Texas Counties. Texas Water Journal, 13(1), 27–44. https://doi.org/10.21423/twj.v13i1.7130

Abstract

This project updates the geothermal resources beneath our oil and gas fields, as part of the research for the Texas GEO project for the counties of Crockett, Jackson and Webb. Through additional bottom-hole temperatures from oil and gas wells drilled in the late 1990s to 2019, the number of sites increased from 532 to 5,410. The project improved the methodology to calculate formation temperatures from 3.5 km to 10 km, included thermal conductivity values more closely related to the actual county geological formations, and incorporated radiogenic heat production of formations and the related mapped depth to basement. The project results show deep temperatures as hotter than previously calculated, with temperatures of 150 °C possible for Webb County between depths of 2.6 – 5.1 kms, average 3.3 km; Jackson County between depths 3.0 – 5.4 kms, average 3.7 km; and Crockett County between depths of 2.7 – 8.0 kms, average 4.0 km. Based on the 150 °C temperature desired for electrical production, 677 wells or 11.6 % of them have at least this temperature or higher. The oil and gas industry can be a significant resource for unlocking our ability as a nation to extract the geothermal heat resource.

https://doi.org/10.21423/twj.v13i1.7130
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