Z Group Energy (ZGE), head quartered in Coolidge, Arizona is an alternative, clean energy partnership engaged in development and design engineering for sealed geothermal manufacture of supercritical water to be used in electricity generation. Our patented method can produce electricity for about the same cost of natural gas fueled methods with its only emission being clean water.
We filed U.S. Patent application #12/473,237 on May 27, 2009. Our application came under review three years later and on February 26, 2013 we were issued U.S. Patent #8,381,523 B2, entitled: GEOTHERMAL ELECTRICITY PRODUCTION METHODS AND GEOTHERMAL ENERGY COLLECTION SYSTEMS.
Our patented, sealed energy system manufactures supercritical fluids, converting them to steam for use in electricity production at costs comparable to current natural gas fueled production costs. Using H2O as the fluid, our patented system yields zero polluting emissions. Supercritical temperatures are obtained geothermally using hot, dry rock. Our system does not use below-ground water or fluids so NO FRACKING is required. The high costs associated with enhanced geothermal system development are largely eliminated with our sealed system.
ZGE has since learned by example from helpful Japanese Snow Monkeys living high atop their snow-capped mountains, how environmentally friendly, clean and relaxing Geothermal really is. Now it’s for us to teach our Snow Monkey friends how to supercritically, Eco-ffectively keep the reading lamp lit.
Why is our Z Group Energy supercritical system innovative or significant?
The short answer is: $0.025 per kWh. This is energy industry competitive and ZGE’s only emission is clean water.
The long answer is: CLOSED SUPERCRITICAL SYSTEM.
The longer answer is: ZGE tips the geothermal reservoir upside down, storing clean water (or some other non-hazardous fluid) conveniently above- ground (or near ground surface), beyond reach of potentially corrosive or toxic insitu geothermal brines; whereas conventional geothermal technologies tap directly into those potentially problematic below-ground brines usually requiring treatment. This doesn’t allow ZGE to store electricity directly, but does enable cost effective, above-ground storage of supercritically heated water for on-demand electricity production at any time. ZGE harvests heat, not fluid – a ground-breaking (pun intended) breakthrough in geothermal technology.
The longest answer is multi-faceted, but a few primary reasons are as follows:
Our unique, non-partitioned flow, convective Heat Cylinders are sealed. Cool, clean, relatively more dense water is introduced to the tops of the cylinders near the bottom of the Exchange Chamber, sinks down and as it sinks to sufficient depth, is heated to supercritical temperatures, reducing density until rising and is collected in the Exchange Chamber. There can be any number of heat cylinders connected together via an Exchange Chamber or Exchange Chambers, which are large diameter, specialized containers able to safely withstand very high temperature and pressure.
An Exchange Chamber fed by a Pressurized (or non-pressurized, depending on system design) Mixing Container, feeds any number of heat cylinders with feed water (from near the bottom of the chamber); collects heated, supercritical fluid from multiple cylinders; convectively mixes and homogenizes fluid temperatures and pressures received from multiple heat cylinders; then discharges mixed, heated fluid or steam (from near the top of the chamber) to a Pressurized Storage Container for final temperature and pressure adjustment ahead of the phase separator(s) and turbine(s). Under supercritical conditions the heated fluid will be neither liquid or steam, holding enormous amounts of energy conservatively yielding as much as 250% the output of a conventional geothermal power plant.
The term supercritical conditions is particularly noteworthy because several years ago when we developed our cutting-edge, sealed, geothermal technology and our patent was filed and under review, we understood how cost effective our closed system technology would become if below-ground temperatures above 374°C could be reached and stored for thermal energy transfer and conversion to electric energy. This vision was hindered at that time by drilling equipment metallurgy experiencing difficulty at temperatures exceeding 300°C or so.
Advancements in deep-drilling technology since that time (2007-2016) have enabled the 2nd phase of Iceland’s Deep Drilling Project, IDDP-2, in January of 2017, to reach a depth of 4,659 meters, at 427°C and 340 bars. This supercritical Icelandic reality proves in real time, not in tomorrow’s future, that Z Group Energy’s expectation for a closed geothermal system maintaining large, commercially viable quantities of supercritical fluid at storage temperatures maintained in a range near 406ºC, 298 bars, or above are now possible. This reality, in turn suggests as this supercritical expectation comes to fruition, the Z Group Energy closed, supercritical system is one of the most cost effective, least emission producing methods for producing electricity now available.
It should be noted that supercritical energy investigated by Iceland’s IDDP-2 Project is further supported by Italy’s Descramble Project and Japan’s Beyond-Brittle Project. ZGE’s sealed system, non-partitioned flow and Exchange Chamber technology can cost-effectively provide significant efficiency improvements for all three of these projects.
Our enclosed, non-partitioned, convective flow regime utilizing any number of individual heating cylinders for feeding (injecting), heating and harvesting (returning) supercritical heat within each cylinder, sans separate injection/return wells, is revolutionary. More importantly for commercial purposes, any number of these sealed Heat Cylinders can be bundled together via an Exchange Chamber. It is also possible to utilize multiple Exchange Chambers should an enormous production scale be appropriate. This design flexibility aspect makes it possible to size Exchange Chamber(s) at the optimum structural, cost-benefit point maximizing safe, reliable production, while minimizing thermal energy losses. Our 100% innovative Exchange Chamber makes it possible to connect any multiple number of Heat Cylinders together, combining and convectively mixing their variable discharges to a homogenized, dynamically stratified whole; maximizing heated, supercritical fluid storage and production while minimizing potential equipment damaging, temperature/pressure variation feed hiccups. Our Exchange Chamber makes it possible to safely and cost effectively exceed previously possible geothermal electricity generation capacities via dynamically stratified, convectively mixed, supercritical, thermal storage within the Exchange Chamber and Sealed Heating Cylinders. ZGE literally manufactures clean supercritical fluid for electricity production – not by harvesting corrosive geothermal brines from a difficult to control open-geological system, but by simply harvesting heat, dry or wet from our closed, sealed system.
Conventional geothermal technology uses below-ground, insitu liquid reservoirs and brines. The Z Group Energy system tips this upside down (we called it the mushroom initially) by using below-ground hot rock and our Sealed Cylinders as the conventional conductive heat source, but using our above-ground Exchange Chamber as the reservoir. This allows the use of uncontaminated, pure, clean or purified water (or some other non-hazardous fluid) for supercritical heat storage and thermal energy transfer, thereby eliminating any need for using potentially toxic, corrosive, equipment damaging, geothermal brines directly. No fracking is ever required with the ZGE system.
Our cost effective, zero emissions Z Group Energy technology renders the dream of every electric car, truck and train manufacturer an economically viable reality. It revolutionizes the infinite possibilities of our electricity dependent – residential, commercial and industrial 21st century lives. Low cost, clean electricity production via the Z Group Energy sealed, supercritical, geothermal system brings every residential dream; every industrial dream; every transportation dream; every medical dream and every food processing dream across the globe into cost effective, non-polluting, economic reality… and this is why our closed, Z Group Energy sealed, supercritical, geothermal system is innovative and significant.
Why would we as a shared civilization not reserve, conserve and utilize our precious fossil fuels for targeted purposes singularly benefited by such fuels and materials, while simultaneously utilizing a zero-polluting, cost effective electricity production method like supercritical geothermal for other applications?