When one thinks of geothermal, steaming Yellowstone National Park pools come to mind. Those geothermal resources occur near volcanoes and mountain regions. Sedimentary geothermal is the heat created by thousands of feet of sediment that have filled up basins in the western and central United States over geologic time. These sedimentary basins are often areas of historic and current oil and gas development, where we can recycle spent oil and gas wells for geothermal electrical generation.
The heat from the water in these basins can be used to generate electrical power subject to some minimum temperature and flow rate thresholds. The heat can also be directly used for district heating in urban and suburban areas.
The map above is utilizing an SMU well temperature dataset and EIA transmission grid data. It shows wells which produce water at least 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Each dot represents thermal electrical potential.
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