Turkey’s Geothermal Energy Potential: Updated Results


E. Didem Korkmaz Basel, Umran Serpen and Abdurrahman Satman

Key Words:

Turkey, identified apparent capacity, volumetric reserve estimation, resource potential, temperature distribution map.

Geo Location:



Stanford Geothermal Workshop




Field Studies



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There are 276 geothermal occurrences including nearly 110 fields having at least one drilled well known to exist in Turkey with surface temperatures ranging from 22.5oC to 220oC according to both MTA 1996, MTA 2005 reports and private knowledge records. Most of these occurrences are mainly located along the major grabens at the Western Anatolia, the Northern Anatolian fault zone and Central and Eastern Anatolian volcanic regions. The surface temperatures in 80 of the occurrences are above 60oC, in 13 of them above 100oC and in 8 occurrences above 140oC. All the data given by MTA inventory and also the data available for the fields studied in the literature and as well as by our department in various projects are evaluated and used to estimate the identified apparent capacity. The identified apparent capacity is given in terms of maximum flow rate and the weighted flow rate temperatures. Total identified geothermal apparent capacity is about 4800 MWt (based on a reference temperature of 15 oC) and 4500 MWt (based on a reference temperature of 20 oC). According to our analysis, nearly 75% of these fields’ current apparent capacities are lower than 5 MWt.

A total of 55 potential geothermal fields are evaluated using volumetric reserve estimation method employing existing geological, geochemical and geophysical data. Seventeen geothermal fields with high temperatures (over 100oC) are suitable for electric power generation and the rest 38 are suitable for non-electric usages. According to Monte Carlo simulation results 17 fields have 710 MWe (cumulative probability; P10) power generation potential. Presently with the existing four power plants, Turkey’s installed capacity of electricity power is 80 MWe. This amount is expected to reach 100 MWe by the end of 2010 with additional two power plants. The estimated recoverable thermal energy of the other 38 geothermal fields evaluated for direct utilization is 2988 MWt for 15oC reference temperature. The estimated recoverable thermal power of the investigated 55 fields is 23566 MWt for a reference temperature of 15 oC. The results of this study in terms of identified apparent capacity, power generation potential and thermal energy potential are discussed.

Also results on heat content based on measured temperature gradient data throughout Turkey are presented. Our results so far reveal that the geothermal resource potential of rocks shallower than 3 km is 3±1x1023 J.

Moreover, subsurface temperature distribution maps constructed using geo-statistical methods are given for detecting hot areas of Turkey and local regions.

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