For this job, GeothermEx services included evaluating geothermal potential across the entire volcanic cordillera of western Nicaragua. As one of the first steps, all previous reports and analyses found in the public domain were evaluated, along with documents held by various agencies. This was followed by extensive field work, which included training local personnel to complement the GeothermEx team.
Together, the in-country team made detailed assessments of each of 10 different geothermal resource areas using a wide range of methods, including field geology, mapping, water and gas sampling, fluid chemistry analysis, and geophysical surveys. To evaluate the generation potential of areas with limited resource information, a customized program was designed to estimate subsurface heat content based on recent volcanic activity.
The final result of the project was an 11-volume report that prioritized the Nicaraguan geothermal sites in terms of their development potential. In total, the 10 areas were estimated to have a combined potential of 1.5 gigawatts of geothermal power. The team also produced a detailed map of the country annotated with specific geothermal data, along with a comprehensive database of fluid chemistry information.
This work led to the establishment of concession limits and conditions for the development of Nicaragua’s geothermal resources, as well as assessing the technical and economic feasibility of increasing geothermal power production in Nicaragua. The 11-volume report now serves as a guide for government agencies and private geothermal developers throughout the country.
For more information, read the Nicaraguan Geothermal Master Plan.