Turkey's Zorlu Energy's Kızıldere 3 geothermal energy power plant in the Denizli province of Turkey's Aegean region has set the bar high globally in terms of its efficiency and as the largest plant in terms of combined installed capacity at 165 megawatts (MW), Ali Kındap, the general manager responsible for investments, operations and maintenance of Zorlu Energy, said yesterday.
Kındap, in an exclusive interview with Anadolu Agency (AA) during a visit to the Kızıldere 3 plant, said the plant started electricity production at full capacity this year.
The Kızıldere 3 plant has two units, one with 100 MW and the second with 65 MW of installed capacity.
"We already have Kızıldere 1 with 15 MW and Kızıldere 2 with 80 megawatts of installed capacity in operation. With Kızıldere 3, our investment volume for these three plants reached $700 million," Kındap said.
He said Kızıldere 3 has the highest capacity in the world as a power plant located on a single site.
"Geothermal is a domestic and renewable energy source. We are doing our best to make it sustainable. Thus, we try to feed our sources underground with the reinjection of water," he explained.
Kındap stated that Kızıldere 3, with a water temperature of 246 degrees Celsius, has the highest efficiency as ensuring high water temperature increases productivity of the plant.
"In the world, the highest percentage is 15. The reason we have 18 percent efficiency is because we use waste steam in a separate part of the plant. So, it contributes a lot to our productivity," Kındap said. This plant has set a precedent worldwide as the first in the world to use waste ste
"Now a number of investors are using the example of Kızıldere 3 for their power plants," he underlined, adding that this production model devised at the Kızildere 3 is now called a "combined geothermal plant."
This production model is currently called "combined geothermal plant" thanks to Kızıldere 3, he stated.
Kındap also said that Kızıldere 3 plans to meet the energy demand of Turkey's first specially administered greenhouse site to be located next to the power plant. He stated that the huge 600-acre area plans to be operational next year. He added Zorlu Energy wants to expand its geothermal energy capacity.
"As our domestic source, geothermal energy could be used both for electricity generation and heating and cooling. Turkey has 3,000 megawatts of electricity generation potential from geothermal in western Turkey while this amount is 30,000 megawatts for heating-cooling," he said.
Kındap said this potential could replace 9 billion cubic meters of natural gas, which corresponds to $2.2 billion worth of imports, based on current prices.