First Decade Of Geothermal Development In Yangbajain Field, China

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Journal Article: First Decade Of Geothermal Development In Yangbajain Field, China

The electric use of geothermal energy in China on a trial basis began in the early 1970s. Since then a total of nine small-scale pilot units, with the exception of Yangbajain, using underground thermal water for electricity generation, have been constructed in different parts of China. All of these localities are already covered by regional electric grids; these units cannot be run safely, steadily and continuously, so it is not possible to attach great importance to these miniplants. Based on their operating experience and thermodynamic and economic analyses in the present technological conditions, it appears that a geothermal water with temperature well below 100°C is favorable only to non-electric uses, except in remote areas with an extreme shortage of conventional energy sources (Liu, 1985). At present the State and local governments take only the Yangbajain geothermal field seriously. The significant achievements in Yangbajain have certainly been made possible by a number of conditions (Wu et al., 1985): a serious lack of oil and coal, and a great difficulty in developing the Xizang hydropower resources, for which an enormous capital investment is evidently needed; hydrothermal resources are present all over the Xizang plateau, usually at relatively shallow depths and consequently more convenient for exploration and exploitation; a willingness on the part of geothermal experts from the hinterlands of China to explore this new energy resource. In addition, the scientific significance of the geothermal phenomena in Xizang Plateau is of considerable interest to many geoscientists and engineers.

Wu Fangzhi, Tong Wei, Liu Shibin and Zhang Zhifei

Published Journal 
Geothermics, 1986



Wu Fangzhi,Tong Wei,Liu Shibin,Zhang Zhifei. 1986. First Decade Of Geothermal Development In Yangbajain Field, China. Geothermics. (!) .